HOLIC 2010

The first International Conference on the History of Logic in China took place on November 24-26, Amsterdam, 2010.
The conference webpage: http://www.sciencehistory.asia/history-logic-china
The conference poster is here.

Johan van Benthem – University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands & Stanford University, USA
Fenrong Liu – Tsinghua University, China
Jeremy Seligman – University of Auckland, New Zealand

Public Lectures, 24 November 2010
- Fenrong Liu, Tsinghua University, China
Chinese Logic and Philosophy: Reconstruction or Integration?

- Rens Bod, Universiteit van Amsterdam
Towards a World History of the Humanities: The Impact of China

The public lectures were organised in cooperation with the Academisch-Cultureel Centrum SPUI25. Please click here for the abstracts of the lectures.

Workshop, 25–26 November 2010

Do different cultures embody fundamentally different styles of thinking? An emphasis on rigorous explicit logic has often been considered a hallmark of Western culture, dating back to Greek Antiquity. But things are more complex, and cultures sometimes have surprising similarities beyond their standard images. In fact, logic started independently, roughly around the same time, in Greece, India, and China. What does this tell us about analogies in thinking across human beings and their cultures? How do we or should we perceive it? The aim of this workshop is to get clearer on these issues.

The workshop brings together experts in Chinese logic and Western logic, comparing themes and insights in these two traditions in detail. While focusing on the School of Mohism in the Pre-Qin period, the workshop will also study logical contributions by other schools, for instance, Confucianism. Basic concepts and reasoning patterns will be extensively explored at the workshop, linking up with modern logical notions and theories. We will also discuss how ancient Chinese logic developed, even into the 20th century, and study how this affects current ways of thinking. While the main emphasis of this event is scholarly, it also touches on major scientific and cultural issues today.

For the programme, please click here.

The institutions involved
Leiden University, University of Amsterdam, and Tsinghua University

Studies in Logic, Special issue on History of Logic in China, Volume 4, Number 3, 2011.
The table of content of the special issue is the following:

  • The History of Logic in China: An introduction (Fenrong Liu, Jeremy Seligman and Johan van Benthem)
  • A Reading of the Guōdiàn 郭店 Manuscript Yǔcóng 語叢 1 as a Masterpiece of Early Chinese Analytic Philosophy and Conceptual Analysis (Christoph Harbsmeier)
  • Models of Reasoning in Ancient China (Fenrong Liu, Jeremy Seligman and Johan van Benthem)
  • Basic Concepts of Mohist Logic (Thierry Lucas)
  • Aristotelean and Mohist Conceptions of Logic and Language (Karel L van der Leeuw)
  • Valid Reasoning in Ancient China from the Perspective of Modern Logic (Wujin Yang)
  • A New Interpretation of Reasoning Patterns in Mohist Logic (Jincheng Zhai)
  • Five Questions on the History of Chinese Logic: a First Glimpse


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