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The Sage and the PeopleThe Confucian Revival in China$
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Sebastien Billioud and Joel Thoraval

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780190258139

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190258139.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 12 May 2021

A Modern Anti-Intellectualism

A Modern Anti-Intellectualism

The Body, the Child, the People

(p.76) 3 A Modern Anti-Intellectualism
The Sage and the People

Sébastien Billioud

Joël Thoraval

Oxford University Press

Chapter 3 attempts to characterize the Confucian revival in its educational dimension. It posits that in the 2000s a prevailing feature of such a revival was its anti-intellectualism. Such an anti-intellectualism should not be understood as the absolute refusal of theory or speculation but as an inversion of priorities: transformative dimensions of education took precedence over the mere acquisition of knowledge. The chapter is structured in three sections. First, it shows the importance ascribed to the body in Confucianism-inspired educative enterprises. Second, it focuses on pedagogy and methods aiming at shaping children and, in the most radical cases, at “producing” a new generation of sages. Third, it shows that the first phase of the Confucian revival had broad popular roots and maintained a cautious distance with the elites, though the situation is changing in the 2010s.

Keywords:   Confucian education, anti-intellectualism, jiaohua, body, music, children, elites, grassroots scholars, Yidan xuetang

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