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This article explores the failures of modern approaches to Chinese thought among both Euro-American and Chinese scholars of classical learning in China. What to date has been called Chinese intellectual history usually has been a less technical version of the history of Chinese philosophy, especially Confucianism. Despite important exceptions, there have been many subjective elements in the prioritizing of Confucian philosophy in Chinese intellectual history—at the expense of Daoism, Buddhism, and Islam, not to mention popular culture or women's history, even when rhetorically denied. This essay explores how study of the history of classical learning in China might proceed after the challenge of postmodern theory.