Description: Among the world's major religions, and as one of the five religions officially recognized in the People's Republic of China, Taoism is undoubtedly the most incompletely known and most poorly understood. This new four-volume collection from Routledge meets the need for an authoritative anthology to enable users to navigate and make sense of the subject's large body of scholarship. Edited by Russell Kirkland, a leading expert in the field, this new Routledge title is a 'mini library' of foundational and the very best cutting-edge work. The efflorescence of Taoist Studies among scholars of the late twentieth century arose from, and further stimulated, a different set of interpretive perspectives. The present collection is devoted to the new studies - historical and textual - that have begun bringing the activities of Taoist men and women, throughout Chinese history, into the limelight of scholarly attention. Taoism includes a full index and a comprehensive introduction, newly written by the editor, which places the collected material in its historical and intellectual context. It is an essential work of reference and is destined to be valued by scholars and advanced students as a vital research tool.
Contents: VOLUME IPart 1: Overviews of the Taoist TraditionPart 2: Hermeneutical Issues and New PerspectivesPart 3: Continuities and Transformations of Elements of 'Classical' Taoism During Imperial TimesPart 4: The Formation of the Daoist 'Canon' and the Importance of Scripture in DaoismPart 5: Early Taoist Social InstitutionsVOLUME IIPart 6: Taoist Cosmology and Concepts of 'Nature'Part 7: Interplay Among China's Religions and Value-SystemsPart 8: New Models for Spiritual PracticePart 9: Activities of Taoist Women in Imperial TimesPart 10: Taoism, Literati, and the StateVOLUME IIIPart 11: Taoist Music, Art, and ArchitecturePart 12: Contributions to Chinese MedicinePart 13: New Methods of Disseminating Taoist Teachings and Practices in Late-Imperial TimesVOLUME IVPart 14: New Traditions and Taoist Identity in Late-Imperial TimesPart 15: Modern Urban TaoismPart 16: Monastic Life TodayPart 17: Prospects for the Twenty-first Century