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Histories of thought and comparative political theory: the curious thesis of "Chinese origins for Western knowledge," 1860-1895

Jenco, Leigh K. (2014) Histories of thought and comparative political theory: the curious thesis of "Chinese origins for Western knowledge," 1860-1895. Political Theory, 42 (6). pp. 658-681. ISSN 0090-5917

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Identification Number: 10.1177/0090591714537079

Abstract

How is cultural otherness any different from the historical otherness already found in our existing canons of thought? This essay examines an influential Chinese conversation that raised a similar question in struggling with its own parochialism. Claiming that all “Western” knowledge originated in China, these Chinese reformers see the differences presented by foreign knowledge as identical to those already authorizing innovation within their existing activity of knowledge-production. Noting that current academic theory-production treats the otherness of past authors in a similar way, I argue that we must broach something like a China-origins claim if we are to see typically marginalized (“non-Western”) thought as part of what disciplines our thought, rather than serves simply as its target of inclusion. Doing so, we blur self/foreign binaries and enable future innovation of thought on radically new terms.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2014 SAGE Publications
Divisions: Government
Subjects: J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
J Political Science > JQ Political institutions Asia
Sets: Departments > Government
Date Deposited: 17 Mar 2015 10:01
Last Modified: 20 Jan 2020 05:32
URI: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/61241

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