Pages: 252Book format: B5Year of Publication: 2008Publication date: 26.09.2008
Japanese Philosophy is the first book to assert the existence of a Japanese philosophy prior to Nishida Kitaro in the early twentieth century. Because of Western military and economic dominance since the seventeenth century, the cross-cultural comparison of non-Western philosophy has generally gone in one direction-comparing Chinese, Indian, and other thought systems with Western philosophy. For various reasons, Japanese scholars did not follow the Chinese lead after 1920 in acknowledging that some of their own literary tradition should be classified as "philosophy." In spite of this, the authors argue that it is useful to compare cultures, and that one way of comparing cultures is to compare their philosophies-and therefore that it is worth treating certain parts of Japanese literature as philosophy, especially those parts that are similar to what has long been classified and treated as philosophy in India and China. By doing so, and by providing an overview of Japanese philosophy from the seventh century to the present, the authors contribute to a greater cross-cultural understanding between East and West.