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Engineering

The Crafting of the 10,000 Things: Knowledge and Technology in Seventeenth-Century China epub ebook

by Dagmar Schäfer

The Crafting of the 10,000 Things: Knowledge and Technology in Seventeenth-Century China epub ebook

Author: Dagmar Schäfer
Category: Engineering
Language: English
Publisher: University of Chicago Press (May 15, 2011)
Pages: 352 pages
ISBN: 0226735842
ISBN13: 978-0226735849
Rating: 4.6
Votes: 796
Other formats: azw mobi lit lrf


Schäfer brings Song and his book out of the narrower history of Chinese technology to integrate him into the broader field of Chinese history as well as the global history of science beyond East Asia.

Schäfer brings Song and his book out of the narrower history of Chinese technology to integrate him into the broader field of Chinese history as well as the global history of science beyond East Asia. For these and other qualities, the History of Science Society awarded this book their 2012 Pfizer Award for most outstanding book on the history of science. Just as Song’s Works of Heaven opens up the world of craftsmen’s knowledge in seventeenth-century China, Schäfer’s The Crafting of the 10,000 Things arguably exemplifies an illuminating approach to the craft of writing on the global history.

Among the numerous guides and reference books that appeared during this period was a series of texts by Song Yingxing (1587–1666?), a minor local official living in southern China. Finally, Schäfer places Song’s efforts in conjunction with the work of other Chinese philosophers and writers, before, during, and after his time, and argues that these writings demonstrate collectively a uniquely Chinese way of authorizing technology as a legitimate field of scholarly concern and philosophical knowledge.

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When it was first rediscovered in Japan early last century, modernist Japanese, Chinese, and Euro-American scholars hastily assimilated.

In The Crafting of the 10,000 Things, Dagmar Schäfer probes this fascinating text and the legacy of its author to shed new light on the development of scientific thinking in China, the purpose of technical writing, and its role in and effects on Chinese history. A brilliant and subtle investigation of the philosophy of technology in early modern China. When it was first rediscovered in Japan early last century, modernist Japanese, Chinese, and Euro-American scholars hastily assimilated Song Yingxing’s Tiangong kaiwu to the accruing literature on the allegedly ill-fated history of science and technology in late imperial China.

the university of chicago press chicago and london.

Knowledge and Technology in Seventeenth-Century China (University of Chicago Press, 2011), Dagmar Schäfer introduces us to the world of scholars and craftsmen in seventeenth-century China through…

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The Crafting of the 10,000 Things is open to any readers who enjoy intellectual adventures. Peter C. Perdue Technology and Culture. Schäfer brings Song and his book out of the narrower history of Chinese technology to integrate him into the broader field of Chinese history as well as the global history of science beyond East Asia. Dagmar Schäfer uses the remarkable work of the Ming scholar and minor official Song Yingxing to bring together the philosophical values of tradition and innovation among the Ming intellectual elite with the material culture of jade, silk, farming, and many other crafts.

Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2011. How we measure 'reads'. Cite this publication. April 2001 · Journal for the History of Astronomy.

Dagmar Schaefer introduces us to the world of scholars and craftsmen in seventeenth-century China through the life and work of Song Yingxing (1587-1666?).

The Crafting of the 10,000 Things. In her elegant work of historical puppet theater The Crafting of the 10,000 Things: Knowledge and Technology in Seventeenth-Century China (University of Chicago Press, 2011), Dagmar Schaefer introduces us to the world of scholars and craftsmen in seventeenth-century China through the life and work of Song Yingxing (1587-1666?). A minor official in southern China, Song has earned a major reputation among scholars of Chinese history for writing the Tiangong kaiwu, a work on practical knowledge that covers topics ranging from salt-making, to gunpowder, to metallurgy.

Dagmar Schäfer, however, is the first to examine the philosophical foundations of Song’s work. He himself did not practice a craft, and he reaffirmed the proper role of the craftsman in society: inferior to the scholar and farmer, but superior to the merchant. In this book, she shows that Song had an unorthodox metaphysical perspective that motivated his technical description, and she analyzes Song’s connection to the confusing social and economic changes of late-sixteenth and early-seventeenth China. Her study is a brilliant and subtle investigation of the philosophy of technology in early modern China.

The last decades of the Ming dynasty, though plagued by chaos and destruction, saw a significant increase of publications that examined advances in knowledge and technology. Among the numerous guides and reference books that appeared during this period was a series of texts by Song Yingxing (1587–1666?), a minor local official living in southern China. His Tiangong kaiwu, the longest and most prominent of these works, documents the extraction and processing of raw materials and the manufacture of goods essential to everyday life, from yeast and wine to paper and ink to boats, carts, and firearms.

            In The Crafting of the 10,000 Things, Dagmar Schäfer probes this fascinating text and the legacy of its author to shed new light on the development of scientific thinking in China, the purpose of technical writing, and its role in and effects on Chinese history. Meticulously unfolding the layers of Song’s personal and cultural life, Schäfer chronicles the factors that motivated Song to transform practical knowledge into written culture. She then examines how Song gained, assessed, and ultimately presented knowledge, and in doing so articulates this era’s approaches to rationality, truth, and belief in the study of nature and culture alike.  Finally, Schäfer places Song’s efforts in conjunction with the work of other Chinese philosophers and writers, before, during, and after his time, and argues that these writings demonstrate collectively a uniquely Chinese way of authorizing technology as a legitimate field of scholarly concern and philosophical knowledge.

Offering an overview of a thousand years of scholarship, The Crafting of the 10,000 Things explains the role of technology and crafts in a culture that had an outstandingly successful tradition in this field and was a crucial influence on the technical development of Europe on the eve of the Industrial Revolution.

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