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Virginia Commonwealth University
HIST 201
James Scow

10/22/12 Culture and Curiosity: Did Chinese culture impede Chinese expansion? Chinese writing does not allow for easy alphabetization Vocabulary: • Technical specialty vs. a desire to obscure o Is technical vocab. needed to say something specific or is the person just desiring to obscure what they say Language, Thought and Science in China • Why China did not break out o Ambiguity of terms  Chinese language is not concrete, it is ambiguous o Chinese though includes a lack of abstraction  There is a level at which Chinese language doesn’t get away from the particular to the general; the difference between the dog and a dog o Focuses on Chinese examples only  Only Chinese examples come up o The Arabic comparison (no scientific revolution there, either)  Arabic is a little easier to pin down, a little bit more focused and less ambiguity in their language Chinese scholars did not look much at foreign learning Premodern Chinese scholarship did not have strict rules against copying from previous writers Thought Modes • “When the Chinese desire to create symmetry and balance is set to work on all these
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