Three Disciplines at One Table (2012)

A discussion between Prof. Ken Takashima, Prof. Michael Puett and Prof. Lothar von Falkenhausen

In the discussion led by Lothar von Falkenhausen, three eminent scholars of Early Chinese history meet. Three fields of specialty are involved: early material culture and archaeology (von Falkenhausen), early Chinese philology and oracle bone inscriptions (Kenichi Takashima) and early intellectual history (Michael Puett). Together, the three scholars debate on the Shang and Zhou dynasties: while Ken Takashima focuses on divinatory texts of the 13-11 centuries B.C. and their diction, Michael Puett considers the Western terms of “Fate, Freedom and Prognostication” in the context of Early China. In cooperation with both, Lothar von Falkenhausen attempts better to understand and classify the divinatory material objects of early Chinese archeology.