The Northern Lights Confucius Institute presents a lecture by Monika Gaenssbauer

The Reception of Daoism in the German-language Context

Lögberg 103, April 6th from 3:00 – 4:15 pm

The Reception of Daoism in the German-language context is an interesting field of cultural exchange and cultural transfer movements.

Monika’s talk will provide some insights into different modes of reception. The scholar of Chinese Studies Karl-Heinz Pohl once described Daoism as a “plaything of the Zeitgeist in the West“. Jesuit missionaries already dealt with Daoism as early as the 16th Century. In the late 19th and early 20th Century Daoist works were translated into German by many different authors. Richard Wilhelm’s and Martin Buber’s  translations of Daoist works still enjoy great popularity among their German-language readership but have also been sharply criticized by scholars of Chinese Studies such as Hans-Georg Möller. Another philosopher who was profoundly influenced by Daoism was Martin Heidegger. In the end the talk tries to present a way of dealing with the Zhuangzi from a perspective of literary study.

Monika Gaenssbauer is currently a fellow at the International Consortium for Research in the Humanities at Erlangen University and Honorary Professor for Translation at the Open University of Hong Kong. From 2009-2015 she was Deputy Chair of Chinese Studies at the Institute for Near Eastern and East Asian Languages and Civilizations at Erlangen University. She completed her M.A. in Chinese Studies and political science, earned her PhD in 1996 at Bochum University and her post-doctoral degree (Habilitation) in Chinese Studies 2008 at the University of Erlangen.