D. Virtue East & West > Special Journal Edition of DAO: "Virtue Ethics and Confucian Ethics"

Springer's leading East/West comparative journal, Dao has a recent special edition on the topic "Virtue Ethics and Confucian Ethics," guest edited by Special Section Editor: WANG Qingjie. Volume 9, Number 3 (2010).

My old teacher, George Rudebusch, contributes to another edition of tis jurnal with "Yu, Confucius, and Ren," in which he discusses Yu's book on the comrison of Confucian and Aristotelian trditions. Rudebusch writes that, "Chinese thought have proposed to understand it in terms fundamentally alien to traditional Western philosophy. This book breaks a new path. While there are differences in culture, language, genre, and principle between East and West (as there are also, of course, such differences within the East and within the West!), these differences do not rule out the possibility of a shared approach to the theoretical project of seeking to understand what is good for human beings and a shared approach to the practical project of trying to live excellent lives."

Many other fine contributions are below:

The “Manifesto” of New-Confucianism and the revival of virtue ethics
Jiyuan Yu
In 1958, a group of New-Confucians issued “A Manifesto for a Re-Appraisal of Sinology and Reconstruction of Chinese Culture.” Equally in 1958, the British philosopher Elizabeth Anscombe published her classical paper “Modern Moral Philosophy.” These two papers have the same target — modern Western morality — and the solutions they proposed respectively. Yet Anscombe’s paper did not mention Confucianism, and the “Manifesto” ignored Aristotelian tradition of virtue. Furthermore, from 1960s to 1990s, the revival movement of Confucianism and the revival movement of Aristotelian ethics have not had much dialogue. This paper seeks to explain this phenomenon by comparing these two historically important documents. In particular it tries to understand why the “Manifesto” fails to see the similarities between Aristotle and Confucius.

Mingyuan Gu Pages 169-190(2006)
The Confucian understanding of emotions and their ethical importance confirms and exemplifies the contemporary Western renewed understanding of the nature of emotions. By virtue of a systematic conceptual analysis of Confucian ethics, one can see that, according to Confucians, the ethical significance of emotions, lies in that an ethical life is also emotional and virtues are inclinational. And a further exploration shows that the reason for the ethical significance is both that emotions are heavenly-endowed and that there exists a union of emotions and reason in Confucian ethics. This will constitute a challenge to the so-called mainstream ethical theories which have been popularly engaged in seeking justifications for abstract moral rules.

A Confucian View of Personhood and Bioethics
Erika Yu & Ruiping Fan
This paper focuses on Confucian formulations of personhood and the implications they may have for bioethics and medical practice. We discuss how an appreciation of the Confucian concept of personhood can provide insights into the practice of informed consent and, in particular, the role of family members and physicians in medical decision-making in societies influenced by Confucian culture. We suggest that Western notions of informed consent appear ethically misguided when viewed from a Confucian perspective.
Keywords Confucianism - Bioethics - Informed consent - Personhood - Public policy

Lai Chen, Virtue "Ethics and Confucian Ethics," p
Abstract This essay focuses on the unity of several virtues in pre-Qin Confucians.Confucius maintains the proper application and coherence of such virtues as benevolence,wisdom, trustworthiness, straightforwardness, courage, and firmness. Further, Confucius
takes benevolence and nobility as characteristic of human being. Particular attention is paidto the distinction and relationship between virtuous characters and virtuous actions.
Keyword Virtue ethics . Confucius . Virtuous characters . Virtuous actions

Virtuous Decision Making for Business Ethics
Chris Provis
In recent years, increasing attention has been given to virtue ethics in business. Aristotle’s thought is often seen as the basis of the virtue ethics tradition. For Aristotle, the idea of phronēsis, or ‘practical wisdom’, lies at the foundation of ethics. Confucian ethics has notable similarities to Aristotelian virtue ethics, and may embody some similar ideas of practical wisdom. This article considers how ideas of moral judgment in these traditions are consistent with modern ideas about intuition in management decision making. A hypothetical case is considered where the complexity of ethical decision making in a group context illustrates the importance of intuitive, phronēsis-like judgment. It is then noted that both Aristotelian and Confucian virtue ethics include suggestions about support for moral decision making that are also consistent with modern theory. There has been a significant development of virtue ethics in recent decades. The followingdiscussion first considers the possible light that virtue ethics might shed on the study of ancient Confucian ethics and examines the Confucian theory of virtue from the perspectiveof virtue ethics; secondly, a limited comparative discussion between Confucius Lunyu (Analects) and Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics will be made, with the former as representative of the Confucian theory of virtue and the latter as representative of Greek philosophy.
July 20, 2012 | Registered CommenterGuy Axtell