Chinese Theology and Translation: The Christianity of the Jesuit Figurists and their Christianized Yijing

1st Edition

Sophie Ling-chia Wei

Published October 22, 2019
Reference - 152 Pages - 11 B/W Illustrations
ISBN 9781138481503 - CAT# K348879
Series: Routledge Studies in Asian Religion and Philosophy


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This book uncovers the Jesuits’ mystic theological interpretation in the translation of the Book of Changes (the Yijing) in their mission in China.

The book analyzes how Jesuit Figurists incorporated their intralingual translation of the Yijing, the Classical and vernacular use of Chinese language and the imitation of Chinese literati’s format, and the divinization of Yijing numbers into their typological exegesis.

By presenting the different ways in which Jesuit Figurists Christianized the Yijing and crafted a Chinese version of Jesus and Christian stories onto the Chinese classics, this book reveals the value of Jesuit missionary-translators. The Chinese manuscripts the Figurists left behind became treasures which have been excavated and displayed in this book. These treasures reveal the other side of the story, the side not much shown in past scholarship on the Figurists. These handwritten manuscripts on the Christianized Yijing are a legacy which continues to impact European understanding of Chinese history and civilization in later centuries.

A first analysis of these manuscripts in Chinese, the book will be of interest to scholars working on the history of Christianity in China, Translation Studies, and East Asian Religion and Philosophy.

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