In this Book

buy this book Buy This Book in Print
summary
Accounts of the seventeenth-century Jesuit Mission to China have often celebrated it as the great encounter of two civilizations. The Jesuits portrayed themselves as wise men from the West who used mathematics and science in service of their mission. Chinese literati-official Xu Guangqi (1562–1633), who collaborated with the Italian Jesuit Matteo Ricci (1552–1610) to translate Euclid’s Elements into Chinese, reportedly recognized the superiority of Western mathematics and science and converted to Christianity. The writings relegate Xu and the Chinese to subsidiary roles as the Jesuits' translators, followers, and converts. Imagined Civilizations tells the story from the Chinese point of view. Using Chinese primary sources, Roger Hart focuses in particular on Xu, who was in a position of considerable power over Ricci. The result is a perspective startlingly different from that found in previous studies. Hart analyzes Chinese mathematical treatises of the period, revealing that Xu and his collaborators could not have believed their declaration of the superiority of Western mathematics. Imagined Civilizations explains how Xu’s West served as a crucial resource. While the Jesuits claimed Xu as a convert, he presented the Jesuits as men from afar who had traveled from the West to China to serve the emperor.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. pp. 1-7
  3. restricted access
    • Download PDF Download
    contents
  1. Contents
  2. pp. vii-viii
  3. restricted access
    • Download PDF Download
    contents
  1. 1. Introduction
  2. pp. 1-32
  3. restricted access
    • Download PDF Download
    contents
  1. 2. Science as the Measure of Civilizations
  2. pp. 33-50
  3. restricted access
    • Download PDF Download
    contents
  1. 3. From Copula to Incommensurable Worlds
  2. pp. 51-76
  3. restricted access
    • Download PDF Download
    contents
  1. 4. Mathematical Texts in Historical Context
  2. pp. 77-130
  3. restricted access
    • Download PDF Download
    contents
  1. 5. Tracing Practices Purloined by the Three Pillars
  2. pp. 131-194
  3. restricted access
    • Download PDF Download
    contents
  1. 6. Xu Guangqi, Grand Guardian
  2. pp. 195-256
  3. restricted access
    • Download PDF Download
    contents
  1. 7. Conclusions
  2. pp. 257-264
  3. restricted access
    • Download PDF Download
    contents
  1. Acknowledgments
  2. pp. 265-270
  3. restricted access
    • Download PDF Download
    contents
  1. Appendix A: Zhu Zaiyu’s New Theory of Calculation
  2. pp. 271-278
  3. restricted access
    • Download PDF Download
    contents
  1. Appendix B: Xu Guangqi’s Right Triangles, Meanings
  2. pp. 279-290
  3. restricted access
    • Download PDF Download
    contents
  1. Appendix C: Xu Guangqi’s Writings
  2. pp. 291-304
  3. restricted access
    • Download PDF Download
    contents
  1. Bibliography
  2. pp. 305-366
  3. restricted access
    • Download PDF Download
    contents
  1. Index
  2. pp. 367-374
  3. restricted access
    • Download PDF Download
    contents

Additional Information

ISBN
9781421407128
Related ISBN
9781421406060
MARC Record
OCLC
867739455
Pages
288
Launched on MUSE
2013-08-13
Language
English
Open Access
No
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.