The Chinese Aesthetic Tradition

The Chinese Aesthetic TraditionLi Zezhou (b. 1930) has been an influential thinker in China since the 1950s. Before moving to the U.S. in the wake of the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989, Li published works on Kant and traditional and contemporary Chinese philosophy. The present volume, a translation of his Huaxia meixue (1989), is considered among Li’s most significant works. Apart from its value as an introduction to the philosophy of one of contemporary China’s foremost intellectuals, The Chinese Aesthetic Tradition fills an important gap in the literature of Chinese aesthetics in English. It presents Li’s synthesis of the entire trajectory of Chinese aesthetic thought, from ancient times to the early modern period, incorporating pre-Confucian and Confucian ideas, Daoism, Chan Buddhism, and the influence of Western philosophy during the late-imperial period. As one of China’s As one of China’s major contemporary philosophers and preeminent authority on Kant, Li is uniquely positioned to observe this trajectory and make it intelligible to today’s readers.

November 2009 / ISBN 978-0-8248-3307-7 / $50.00 (CLOTH)

Jon Shirota Reading and Talk at Kapiolani Community College

Shirota at KCC

Ethics and the State in Meiji Japan

Making a Moral SocietyMaking a Moral Society: Ethics and the State in Meiji Japan, an innovative study of ethics in Meiji Japan (1868–1912), explores the intense struggle to define a common morality for the emerging nation-state.

“Richard Reitan argues that modern Japanese ethics—and particularly the creation of an ethics of a ‘Japanese spirit’ or ‘Japanese national character’—arose in the context of the Meiji movement for civilization, as Japan attempted to become more like Europe in order to recover its sovereignty and equality with western states. His is a thoughtful and original contribution to the historiography of Japan and valuable account of the rise of ‘national morality.’ The book demonstrates an admirable command of the material, great clarity with which Japanese concepts are explained, and an argument of nuance and subtlety. Making a Moral Society will not only be of interest to scholars of Japanese history, religion, and culture, and scholars of ethics, nationalism, and modernization generally, but will also be useful in graduate seminars and advanced undergraduate courses.” —Douglas Howland, University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee

November 2009 / ISBN 978-0-8248-3294-0 / $48.00 (CLOTH)

Short Stories by Modern Korean Women Writers

Questioning MindsAvailable for the first time in English, the ten short stories by modern Korean women collected in Questioning Minds: Short Stories by Modern Korean Women, translated by Yung-Hee Kim, touch in one way or another on issues related to gender and kinship politics. All of the protagonists are women who face personal crises or defining moments in their lives as gender-marked beings in a Confucian, patriarchal Korean society. Their personal dreams and values have been compromised by gender expectations or their own illusions about female existence. They are compelled to ask themselves “Who am I?” “Where am I going?” “What are my choices?” Each story bears colorful and compelling testimony to the life of the heroine. Some of the stories celebrate the central character’s breakaway from the patriarchal order; others expose sexual inequality and highlight the struggle for personal autonomy and dignity. Still others reveal the abrupt awakening to mid-life crises and the seasoned wisdom that comes with accepting the limits of old age.

Hawai‘i Studies on Korea
November 2009 / ISBN 978-0-8248-3409-8 / $24.00 (PAPER)

More November Events!

Tuesday, November 10, 11:30-1:00, UH-Manoa Bookstore
UH Bookstore will host a multi-author book signing event, which will include UH Press authors Carlos Andrade (Ha‘ena), Ann Shea Bayer (Going Against the Grain), James Brandon (Kabuki’s Forgotten War), and Michi Kodama-Nishimoto, Warren Nishimoto, and Cynthia Oshiro (Talking Hawai‘i’s Story).

Wednesday, November 11, 2:00-3:30, Hawai‘i Okinawa Center
Readings from Uchinanchu: A History of Okinawans in Hawaii. Light refreshments will be served, free parking available. This event is co-sponsored by the Hawai‘i United Okinawa Association and UH’s Center for Oral History, Center for Okinawan Studies, and Center for Japanese Studies. For more information, contact the Center for Oral History (phone: 956-6165; email:

Saturday, November 14, 9:00-12 noon, Oahu Urban Garden Center
“Second Saturday at the Garden” will feature landscape architect and horticultural expert Paul Weissich, who will answer questions and sign copies of Small Trees for the Tropical Landscape (also available for purchase).

And don’t forget… also this month:
UH Press authors signing at the Daughters of Hawai‘i Annual Book Day
book launch for Chinese Pioneer Families of Maui, Molokai, and Lanai
talks, signings, and performances celebrating novelist and playwright Jon Shirota

UH Press Now Distributing Shanghai Press

University of Hawai`i Press is pleased to announce it is now a North American distributor for Shanghai Press and Publishing Development Company, a mainland China publisher of fine books in English for general readers. Highlights include:

–full-color photo essays on Tibet, the Great Wall, the Yangtze, Shaoxing (hometown of Lu Xun, the father of modern Chinese literature), the legendary 20th-century Beijing opera star Mei Lanfang;

–full-color guides to Shanghai’s colonial Western architecture, Qufu (Confucius’ birthplace), China’s most famous cultural and natural sites;

–full-color introductions to Chinese civilization, tea, popular customs, classical furniture and home decor, architecture, calligraphy, brush painting, Beijing opera;

–the Cultural China Chinese-English Reader series, featuring abridged, bilingual editions of Chinese fiction and nonfiction for language students;

–colorful children’s books illustrating Chinese fables and idioms.

For a complete list of titles, please click here.