The Armpit Sage V. the Golden Barbarian: Zhen Luan's Response to the Taoist Conversion Narrative
Date of Graduation
Master of Arts in Communication
This work examines a single line of argument from a medieval Chinese dispute between the supporters of Taoism and Buddhism. Western rhetorical scholars have generally ignored Chinese argumentation. It seems that the Western understanding of China as a rigidly hierarchical society has lead to the conclusion that argumentation has not played a noteworthy role in Chinese culture. This thesis challenges that conclusion by examining a medieval Chinese dispute over the origin of Buddhism. A single text is selected and evaluated using Fisher's narrative method. Results seem to indicate that the Chinese have engaged in argument as a means of critical decision-making and that with sufficient knowledge of Chinese history and culture those arguments are comprehensible to Westerners.
© Paul Hood
Hood, Paul, "The Armpit Sage V. the Golden Barbarian: Zhen Luan's Response to the Taoist Conversion Narrative" (1998). MSU Graduate Theses. 322.