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Feature Reviews 37 Hermann-Josef Röüicke. Die Fährte des Herzens: Die Lehre vom Herzensbestreben (zhil&) im Grossen Vorwort zum ShijingWM.. Marburger Studien zur Afrika- und Asienkunde, series B, vol. 12. Berlin: Reimer, 1992. 210 pp. Paperback. Die Fährte des Herzens (The path of the heart) is not a long book (its main text runs for only 150 pages), but it is a dense one that demands careful reading. Its goal is a systematic understanding ofthe earliest attested Chinese poetic theory, that ofthe "Great Preface" to the Shijing, and its quest leads through analyses of passages drawn from many fundamental texts: the Shang shu, Zuo zhuan, Lun yu, Liji, Meng zi, and Xun zi, in addition to the Shijing and its commentaries. Röllicke lets the texts and their interrelations set the agenda. It is no exaggeration to say that the whole book with its panoply ofreferences is meant as a footnote to three sentences from the "Great Preface": "Poetry [is] that to which the strivingof -the-heart goes. What is in the heart [is] the striving-of-the-heart; what is expressed in words [is] poetry. Emotions [are] agitations within, and [they] take shape as words" f£S;££8r£lÈ ° ftbMfe ' ^BfSIi ° If»Î»fôRf ° ' Previous writing about the Shijinghzs seen in the poetological writings of the Warring States and Han periods little more than supporting material for the Confucian pedagogy that drew historical and moral lessons from the Odes. As long as that pedagogy held sway, there was no reason to make its presuppositions the subject ofspecial scrutiny. But when scholars of unquestioned ability such as Zheng Qiao ffät (1103-1162) and Zhu Xi ^M (1130-1200) began to reject the old "Prefaces" and "Commentaries" in favor of a direct reading of the Odes themselves , the practice of"teaching through the Odes" (shijiao f#ÉS0 became an object of controversy and scholarly attention in its own right. As a rule, to discuss the method of the "Prefaces" is implicitly to measure it against its rival, the reading that dispenses with the "Prefaces." The focus of Die Fährte des Herzens, however, is on "what the poetology accompanying the Shijing asserts that the poems say, not [on] . . . what the poems themselves say." In contrast to the Shi jingiconoclasts, Röllicke aims at formulating "a different point ofview, one whose concern is with the Chinese philosophy ofpoetry" (p. 147). By making "poetology"—the theory ofthe origin and effects of poetry—and not poetics or hermeneutics, the subject ofhis book, Röllicke has created a new specialization. The benefit of concentrating on the pure philosophy© 1995 by Universityv t,r r r ? r IT .,. n of poetry is that Röllicke can show how many and complex are the strands bindof Hawai ? Pressriir ing the disparate passages in which poetological ideas are found. The passages he discusses are all familiar to students of Chinese poetry—too familiar, if anything: 38 China Review International: Vol. 2, No. 1, Spring 1995 ^rWiS ' fê-M$ ' ^lìkJC^m ' WMWi&, and so forth have since long ago been worn down to the state oflabels, slogans, or passwords (are you f^rW^ or irrUHìI?). Zhu Ziqing's 7^|f| admirable essay Shiyan zhi bian RfH;£$# (1945) was a first attempt at sorting out the phrase book and at charting the unsuspected shifts in meaning that some of the slogans had undergone between the early Spring and Autumn period and the Six Dynasties, when poetic technique first came into its own as a topic of learned discussion. Röllicke takes Zhu as his guide to the ancient practice offu shi guan zhi KïPtlSïÈC, "reciting poetry [to a superior ] in order to reveal one's thoughts." One ofthe most valuable parts of Die Fährte des Herzens (pp. 57-82) is quite literally an expansion of one section ofZhu's essay. Where Zhu had simply collected a series of Zuo zhuan and Guo yu passages that exemplified fu shi, expecting their meaning to be transparent, Röllicke expects more from the examples—and may get it, if the reader will grant him his method. When, in 546 b.c.e., Zi Dashu of the state ofZheng...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1527-9367
Print ISSN
1069-5834
Pages
pp. 37-44
Launched on MUSE
2011-03-30
Open Access
No
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