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To rule by ritual : the theorization of ritual psychology in the bamboo texts of Guodian Ashton, Clayton Howard 2017

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Abstract  This study examines the development of a theory of ritual psychology in Chinese political thought during the Warring States period (c. 450 - 221 BCE), as found in four Confucian bamboo manuscripts from the Guodian corpus which were discovered in 1993 in a tomb that had been sealed in c. 300 BCE. These four texts, called here the Ritual Authority manuscripts, provide new evidence of a political theory that applied ritual practices to the management of the state, with implications for our understanding of both the development of the Confucian tradition and of the formation of the early Chinese empire.  The introduction surveys how the concept of ritual has been framed in studies of Chinese history, and argues that this new evidence of a conscious theorization about ritual psychology should compel us reexamine this topic. Chapter One makes use of the insights offered by the cross-disciplinary field of Ritual Studies to create a working definition of “ritual” as an academic term of analysis, and then examines a range of primary sources from the Warring States period in order to reconstruct the discursive field of meaning encompassed by the Chinese term li, or “ritual propriety,” which was the focus of this theorization. Chapter Two considers the implications of the previous chapter’s insights by examining how ritual practices rely on a sense of historical authority, which embroils these practices in a larger tension between tradition and innovation. Chapter Three examines the development of theories of political authority in the Warring States period, and shows how these presented a fundamental challenge to the Confucian emphasis on ritual practices. Chapter Four turns to the Ritual Authority manuscripts from Guodian and closely examines how they reveal an attempt to incorporate a theory of ritual iipsychology into a defence of traditional ritual practices. This study finally concludes by considering the larger implications of this intellectual innovation, and suggests several possible directions of future research based on this research. 
iiiLay Summary  The present work examines the development of political theories from early China (approximately 450 - 221 BC). More specifically, it attempts to understand how and why certain political theorists at this time believed that ritual practices should be used as a tool by these early governments to manage and control their people. The discovery of texts that had been sealed in a tomb in approximately 300 BC have offered historians new evidence that political theorists at this time had developed a theory that people’s moral character and emotions were affected by the performance of basic rituals of respect. The evidence of this insight into human psychology has implications for our understanding of how the early Chinese state was formed, and this study suggests that ritual practices should be taken seriously as one of the tools used by early rulers and government administrators to manage China’s first empires. 
ivPreface This dissertation is original, unpublished, independent work by the author, C. Ashton.
vTable of Contents Abstract ii ...............................................................................................................Lay Summary iv .....................................................................................................Preface v .................................................................................................................Table of Contents vi ................................................................................................Acknowledgements viii ..........................................................................................Dedication x ...........................................................................................................Introduction 1 .........................................................................................................The Ritual Authority Manuscripts 4 ........................................................................The “Discovery” of Ritual 11 ..................................................................................Ritual in China 12 ....................................................................................................Structure and Methodology 23 ................................................................................Chapter 1: Theories of Ritual and Propriety 27 ......................................................Defining Ritual 32 ...................................................................................................Ritual Practice 39 .....................................................................................................Ritual Propriety 50 ...................................................................................................Mores and Public Order 51 ......................................................................................Courtesy and Etiquette 59 ........................................................................................Transgressing the Norms 66 ....................................................................................Conclusion 73 ..........................................................................................................Chapter 2: Reforming the Rites and Changing Conventions 76 ............................The Historiography of Li 83 ....................................................................................Social Customs 99 ...................................................................................................Innovation and Cultural Technology 108 .................................................................Conclusion 119 ........................................................................................................Chapter 3: Authority and the Law 122 ...................................................................Theories of Authority 126 ........................................................................................Constructing Walls and Securing Locks 133 ...........................................................Punishments and Prohibitions 141 ...........................................................................viThose Who Would Shepherd the People 149 ...........................................................Conclusion 158 ........................................................................................................Chapter 4: The Ritual Authority Manuscripts 163 .................................................The Human Way 167 ...............................................................................................The Great Constancy 174 ........................................................................................Ritual Psychology 192 .............................................................................................Political Trust and Genuine Emotions 205 ..............................................................Communication and Instruction 211 ........................................................................Conclusion 220 .......................................................................................................Bibliography 228....................................................................................................viiAcknowledgements  This dissertation represents only one small part of the time spent in my PhD program, but it offers a unique opportunity to try and express my gratitude to some of the people whose support made these years both possible and worthwhile.  First, I would like to thank my family. My parents, Murray and Susan, have been supportive from the very beginning of my pursuit of this unlikely career. They also remain a constant source of inspiration both in my professional life and in terms of the kind of person I am still trying to be. My partner Susanne has been an endless source of patience, support, friendship, love, and hijinks. Without her, this would not have been possible (nor half as much fun). My two brothers and their families have offered me their homes, advice, jokes, and support throughout these many years and I hope that I am able some day to repay in kind even a fraction of what they have done for me. For now, I can only say thank you to David, Andrea, Elliot and Simon; and Andrew, Cara, Katie and Mia.  Second, I would like to thank my friends. Evan Smith and Naomi Wallis-Ryder have been like a second family, opening up both their home and their refrigerator to me. When I needed it, they have travelled to the ends of the earth just to keep me company. Christopher Lovins has been both 친구 and 前輩  (friend and mentor), and I can’t imagine my years in graduate school without him. Patrick Colp and Joanna Maksay have been a lifeline of generosity and friendship, and because of them Vancouver always felt like a home. I would also like to thank Wayne Kreger, Jennifer Lundin Ritchie, Robban Toleno, Casey Collins, Kyle Thompson, Nathan Brine, Michelle An, Gary Wang, Guy Shababo, Bri Hair, Adam Barnett, Willis Munroe, Tae Yeon Eom, Rachel Freeman, and Kristin Jarvis.  I would also like to thank the many teachers and professors who have helped and instructed me during my time in graduate school. First, my dissertation committee, whose guidance made this project possible (but who are blameless for its many shortcomings). This includes my supervisor, Ted Slingerland about whose scholarship I can only say, “The more I look up at it the higher it seems,” Bruce Rusk whose brilliant mind is always several steps ahead of everyone else in the room, and Michael Puett who has a sage-like ability to teach and inspire everyone he encounters. Josephine Chiu-Duke was an incredible source of encouragement and instruction during my comprehensive examinations, and if I can claim to know anything about early Chinese history it is because of her. I would also like to thank John Beatty, Peter Nosco and Matthew Bedke for participating in my final dissertation defence. I am indebted to many others, including Stefania Burk, Don Baker, Ross King, Alison Bailey, Carla Nappi, Jessica Main, Glen Peterson, Kate Swatek, Paul Crowe, Leo Shin, Tom Selover, and Tim Brook. I would also like to thank the people I met during my brief stay at the University of Aarhus, including Anders Klostergaard Petersen, Jesper Sørensen and Armin W. Geertz, as well as those I met during my time at Peking University and the National Academy of Chinese Theatre Arts. viii I would like to thank the administration staff of the Department of Asian Studies at UBC, who not only keep the department running while patiently answering my endless questions, but have more importantly been a source of friendship and laughter during my time here. This includes Lyndsay Bocchinfuso, Shirley Wong, Jasmina Miodragovic, Pamela Francis, Oliver Mann, Maija Norman, Stephanie Lee, William Strausser, and Lonnie Chase.  Finally, I would like to thank the many undergraduate students I have had the opportunity to meet during my time teaching at UBC. They have made this time particularly enjoyable and worthwhile.  My doctoral research was made possible by funding from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) of Canada. 
ixDedication For my parents, Murray and Susan. For everything. 
xIntroduction  The unification of China under the Qin 秦 state in 221 BCE remains a convenient bookend to demarcate China’s imperial era from its pre-imperial history, even if the reality is not so neat. The Qin empire would be short lived, collapsing into civil war in 206 BCE, not long after the death of its first emperor, Ying Zheng 嬴政. And yet, China would soon be brought together again under the Han 漢 (206 BCE - 220 CE), a second empire whose relative stability, though not free of internal conflicts, would stand in stark contrast to the centuries of disunity that had preceded it. Before this, the region had been defined by intensifying interstate conflicts that had resulted from the fall of the Western Zhou 周 capital in 771 BCE. The Zhou king’s legitimacy would continue to recede until it came to a conclusive end in the fifth century BCE with the rise of large, warring territorial states whose rulers no longer felt beholden to the political norms of the Zhou state or the authority of the ruling family and their descendants. This era, called in hindsight the Warring States (Zhanguo 戰國) period (c. 450 - 221 BCE), was a time of intense conflict but also of famously creative ferment, giving rise to a new kind of total war defined by large conscript armies but also to new technologies, philosophies, and political institutions.  From one perspective, the Qin and Han unification can be understood to represent the culmination of these centuries of creativity and change. For the historian of early China who wishes to understand the ideas and institutions that made possible this early empire, it may be especially valuable to consider the “long century” from about 350 to 221 BCE. During this time, the military stakes were raised as a smaller number of very powerful states came to dominate the 1region, and developments in the intellectual world were also intensified by emerging methods of logic, concepts of the body, and new ways of writing. The full scope of what made possible the management of this large, centralized empire involved a complex nexus of military and civil institutions, methods of propaganda and communication, knowledge production, and intellectual innovations. In his study of Chinese political culture, Yuri Pines has noted that in order to understand the developments that led to the enduring stability of the Chinese empire, we must examine the dynamic process of how the intellectual concepts of political theory were actually put into practice.  This means considering the realm of ideas together with the realm of 1institutions and political practices. Designing new institutions and practices of government that could accomplish the increasingly complicated task of administrating large territorial states would require the construction of a conceptual toolbox with which these complexities could be worked out in abstract terms. This conceptual toolbox would include, in part, new ways of thinking about human nature, the body, psychology, political authority, culture, and social customs. The borrowing of ideas and productive debate led to novel ways of making use of these ideas and applying them to political institutions.  It is the contention of this study that among these many developments, one particularly compelling and notable conceptual innovation would emerge regarding the nature of ritual. New developments in scholarship have recently been occurring in studies of both ritual and early Chinese thought that — taken together — present an opportunity to examine this conceptual development and to draw fresh insights from such an examination. The emerging field of Ritual Studies has opened up conversations between disciplines, helping to render the concept of ritual  Yuri Pines, The Everlasting Empire: The Political Culture of Ancient China and its Imperial Legacy 1(Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2012).2into a term of rich analytical value, while in the field of early Chinese thought the most important development has without question been the sudden influx of new textual discoveries. Texts written on silk, bamboo or wood have been found that date from both the late pre-imperial and early imperial periods. These texts have offered new evidence of the political and religious world of this early period, including insights into the development of theories of ritual and arguments for how ritual practices should be incorporated into political philosophy.  One well-known dynamic from Chinese political theory is what Scott Cook describes as the tension between suasive and coercive approaches to rulership, more famously known as the persistent debate between the relative value of “rule by virtue” (yi de zhi guo 以德治國) versus “rule by law” (yi fa zhi guo 以法治國).  While the suasive approach, favoured by Confucian 2thinkers, would emphasize the role of moral charisma and instruction in managing the state, the coercive strand would emphasize the application of harsh punishments and rewards based on codified penal regulations. We have recently been offered a window into the development of this particular debate with the discovery of the Guodian 郭店 manuscripts, a major corpus of  Warring States archaeological texts that were discovered in Hubei Province, China, in 1993. As Cook notes, the Guodian manuscripts have allowed us to better understand how this particular debate between coercive and suasive rulership developed over time. What the present study suggests, however, is that there is a deeper insight yet to be made from a study of these manuscripts, one that is only revealed with an appropriate focus on the way that the specific concept of li 禮, or “ritual propriety,” occupies the centre of this suasive theory of government  Scott Cook, “The Debate over Coercive Rulership and the ‘Human Way’ in Light of Recently Excavated 2Warring States Texts,” Harvard Journal of Asiatic Studies 64.2.3practice. It is argued here that this insight can only be fully fleshed out when this examination of li makes full use of the academic tools offered by the field of Ritual Studies. This study asks what conclusions the historian might draw if they were to take ritual seriously not simply as the specific practices within a narrowly construed system of religion or philosophy, but as a pervasive phenomenon within human societies — and as something which can be recognized by historical actors as something with a strategic value in the world. This means placing ritual next to other conceptual and institutional phenomenons such as “bureaucracy” or “law,” which are perhaps more recognizable features in early state development.  This approach is prompted particularly by the discovery within the Guodian manuscripts of a set of ideas that have focused on the necessary role of ritual practices within a larger approach to the problem of political authority. This larger approach is represented by four specific manuscripts that present the argument that political practice needed to proceed on the basis of a thorough understanding of human psychology. The Ritual Authority Manuscripts  The field of early Chinese history has recently been reinvigorated by the archaeological discovery of early texts, including examples of legal and administrative documents, mantic texts, military theory, and political and religious essays. These works have added new voices and ideas to the collective body of historical writings, unfiltered by the editorial processes and historical 4vagaries that shaped the received corpus of early China. They also present their own difficulties.  3The bamboo texts in particular have offered challenges to interpretation due to the state in which they were found. The binding straps that had originally kept together the thin bamboo strips on which these texts were written had disintegrated long before these texts were recovered, leaving scholars with the challenge of carefully piecing these together again into discrete and correctly ordered bundles. Because these texts were written prior to the standardization of the Chinese script, there have also been philological challenges in reading some of the content. Some of these texts have been archaeologically excavated, while others have arrived on the black market, their authenticity and archaeological context uncertain, which has raised both methodological and moral questions.  These black-market texts have nevertheless become a major part of this new 4development in early Chinese studies, and it has become clear that any full account of this period will need to take into account the insights from all of these sources.  As these texts now settle into their position as important tools of inquiry into this creative and foundational period of Chinese history, we are finally reaching a point where the significance of the ideas to be found within them can be fully considered. This is especially true of the Guodian manuscripts, which have been the focus of considerable philological scholarship. Scott Cook’s publication of a complete study and translation of these manuscripts has made these works available to a wider readership, and has brought the major research and textual issues  For discussions specific to the nature of textual production and authorship, see Edward L. Shaughnessy, 3Rewriting Early Chinese Texts (New York: State University of New York Press, 2006), William G. Boltz, “The composite nature of early Chinese texts,” in Text and Ritual in Early China, ed. Martin Kern (Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2014), Matthias Richter, The Embodied Text: Establishing Textual Identity in Early Chinese Manuscripts (Leiden: Brill, 2013), and Dirk Meyer, Philosophy on Bamboo: Text and the Production of Meaning in Early China (Leiden: Brill, 2012). Paul R. Goldin, “Heng xian and the problem of studying looted artifacts,” Dao 12.2 (2013).45together into a single location.  For this reason, the Guodian texts are an especially valuable 5resource for discussing the insights from archaeological texts both within the field of early Chinese studies and to a wider academic audience.  6 The Guodian manuscripts had been sealed in a tomb in the ancient state of Chu 楚 around the beginning of the third century BCE.  The corpus includes both distinct versions of important 7canonical works in the received tradition, as well as texts that were previously unknown. The presence within this corpus of texts of a version, in three different bundles, of passages from the received Laozi text captured the most initial attention due to the insights this discovery could afford into our understanding of this influential work from the Chinese philosophical tradition. However, attention was soon also garnered by another text, which the editors of the 1998 publication of the manuscripts titled Xing zi ming chu 性⾃自命出 “Human nature emerges from the mandate.”  The attention in this case was due to this text’s discussion of human nature, a 8concept important to the development of Confucian thought.  Although they have received less attention, there were also three other texts within this corpus that appeared to share certain characteristics in common with Xing zi ming chu. These  Scott Cook, The Bamboo Texts of Guodian: A Study and Complete Translation (Ithica: East Asia 5Program, Cornell University, 2012). There is also now a monograph on the topic: Kenneth W. Holloway, Guodian: The Newly Discovered 6Seeds of Chinese Religious and Political Philosophy (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009). Sarah Allan and Crispin Williams date it to somewhere in the vicinity of one two two decades earlier 7than 300 BCE, “An Account of the Discussion,” in Sarah Allan and Crispin Williams (eds.), The Guodian Laozi: Proceedings of the International Conference, Dartmouth College, May 1998 (The Society for the Study of Early China, 2000), 113-184. Jingmenshi bowuguan, Guodian Chu mu zhujian 郭店楚幕⽵竹簡 (Beijing: Wenwu, 1998). No title was 8provided on any of these original four manuscripts, and the titles provided were all based on textual passages from the contents of the documents. For the purpose of avoiding confusion, I retain these titles throughout this study.6include the texts whose titles, also given by the editors of the 1998 publication, are Liu de 六德 (“The Six Virtues”), Zun deyi 尊德義 (“Honouring Virtue and Rightness”) and Cheng zhi 成之 (“Bringing to completion”).  The bamboo slips of all four of these manuscripts were of the same 9length, measuring at 32.5cm, and the space between their original binding straps were also the same distance of 17.5cm. The script of these four manuscripts also appear to have been written in the same calligraphic “style,” with Liu de and Xing zi ming chu having also been written in the same hand.  In addition, the texts have significant terminological and ideological overlap. 10 Considering these four texts together is to assert that they share in common a unified vision, with ideas and arguments that work together as part of the same strand of thought.  It 11cannot be definitively claimed that these four manuscripts constitute a single “corpus” in the sense that they were always placed together as a unit,  or that that these four works should be 12considered intellectually aligned to the exclusion of the rest of the Guodian manuscripts. However, their ideological unity and material similarities provide sufficient justification for  The text now referred to as Cheng zhi had originally been called Cheng zhi wen zhi 成之聞之, but a now 9accepted re-organization and re-reading of the text’s bamboo slips has resulted in this shortened title. Matthias Richter, “Tentative Criteria for Discerning Individual Hands in the Guodian Manuscripts,” in 10Rethinking Confucianism: Selected Papers from the Third International Conference on Excavated Chinese Manuscripts, Mount Holyoke College, April 2004, ed. Wen Xing (San Antonio: Trinity University, 2006), 133. The text Yucong I 語叢⼀一 also very likely belongs within this same “school" of thought, but is being 11considered separately because of significant differences in style and materiality. The other text whose content might lead a reader to consider it together with these manuscripts would be Wu xing 五⾏行, a text which also deals with many similar themes, but whose particular views on the nature of human physiology suggests it be considered, at least tentatively, distinct despite some overlapping concerns. For a full discussion of Wu xing, see Mark Csikszentmihalyi, Material Virtue: Ethics and the Body in Early China (Leiden: Brill, 2004). In fact, the presence of Xing zi ming chu in the Shanghai Museum collection without the other three 12manuscripts suggests that this may not have been the case. This text can can be found in Ma Chengyuan (ed.), Shanghai bowuguan cang Zhanguo Chu zhushu v.1 上海博物館藏戰國楚⽵竹書 (⼀一) (Shanghai: Shanghai gu ji chubanshe, 2001).7considering them together as a unit, and a close reading of the texts only seems to further verify the reasoning behind this decision. The issues of authorship, audience and textual production are more complex, and there are many questions yet to be answered about the nature of early Chinese manuscripts and the purposes and methods of their production and reproduction. For now, it may not make sense to expect specific works to be collected together into meaningful bodies of work in the sense that we have come to expect from the textual traditions that arose in the Han empire, particularly after the editorial labour of scholars like Liu Xiang 劉向. The production of texts appears to have existed alongside other forms of knowledge production and transmission, including oral transmission, teacher-student interactions, and communities of shared practice. The reading of these texts together is based on the view that these four works together represent the core ideas of a single and consistent political view.  The views presented in these texts can be categorized under the umbrella of “Confucianism,” a term that I will be employing in this study in spite of some very strong arguments that could be made against it.  The primary justification for using this term is that it 13continues to be a recognizable and familiar term to an audience that does not have an expert understanding of early Chinese history. For the purposes of this study, Confucianism should be understood as referring to a perceived tradition and strand of thought belonging to those identified, by themselves or by others, as the Ru 儒 — the “literati,” “classicist,” or “ritualist”  For a discussion of the problems with religious “isms” more generally, see Robert Ford Campany, “On 13the Very Idea of Religion (In the Modern West and in Early Medieval China),” History of Religions 42.4 (2003). Campany’s discussion focuses on early medieval China specifically, but his discussion is valuable for this problem more generally. For a discussion of the way that later narratives have shaped our impressions of these pre-imperial “schools” of thought, see Mark Csikszentmihalyi and Michael Nylan, “Constructing Lineages and Inventing Traditions through Exemplary Figures in Early China,” T’oung Pao 89.1 (2003).8scholars whose knowledge was focused on the cultural traditions of the Central Plains culture of early China. These thinkers established a pedagogical and textual legacy directly inspired by and aligned with the late Spring and Autumn (Chunqiu 春秋) period (771 - c. 450 BCE) thinker Kong Qiu 孔丘 (d. c. 479 BCE), now known to the English speaking world by his latinized title Confucius. Self-identified Ru in early China share in common a focus on preserving and extolling the cultural traditions of the so-called “Three Ages” (Sandai 三代) — the three successive states that held some form of hegemonic or legitimate authority over the Yellow River Valley region. These are the semi-mythical Xia 夏,  the historical Shang 商 (c. 1554 - 1046 14BCE) and most importantly the Zhou (1045 - 256 BCE).  15 What these four specific texts share in common is an overarching argument that political practices must be based on a specific understanding of human psychology, and that the only way to correctly and ideally employ this understanding is to make use of the cultural traditions of the Zhou. Shared arguments, ideas and terminology all connect these works together in a way that is difficult to deny. The importance of ritual and music in particular is asserted in ways that are consistently connected to arguments about the limitations of coercive forms of authority that rely on punishments and rewards. Another consistent view is regarding the tension between family relationships and the public relationships of the political sphere. I have titled these four texts together the “Ritual Authority manuscripts” on the basis of the fact that they turn to ritual practices to describe and justify their larger theme, which is directed towards explaining how  There is no historical data to verify the existence of a Xia state, but it may possibly be connected to the 14archaeologically attested  “Erlitou” ⼆二⾥里頭 culture (c. 1900 - 1555 BCE). See Li Feng, Early China: A Social and Cultural History (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013), 41-65. Dates from Li Feng, Early China, xx.159cultural traditions can be employed to cultivate and assert political authority. As will be discussed below, the prominence of a concept of ritual propriety (li 禮) in Chinese history is a well established fact, but the significance of this focus on ritual has yet to be fully fleshed out. Because the Ritual Authority manuscripts employ a conceptual understanding of ritual psychology in order to explain the power and purpose of the concept of li, they offer the possibility of a new and much deeper understanding of the role that the concept of ritual has played in both the development of the early Chinese state and the character of the later empire.  The Ritual Authority manuscripts appear to represent be the last surviving attempt in the Warring States period to defend a cosmologically rooted Confucian worldview, in which the traditions and practices of the Zhou state could be linked in some way to Heaven’s direct agency in the world. This provides an essential link in our understanding of the development of the ideas of late Warring States thinker Xunzi, whose instrumental view of human cultural institutions otherwise seems a historically abrupt viewpoint. In this way, the Ritual Authority manuscripts may also provide an example of a religious tradition being slowly adapted into what might be described as a “secular” system of ethics, specifically in the sense that Xunzi would identify the Confucian worldview as a fully human construction, justified by its instrumental value to society. This reveals how certain ritual practices can, in some ways, become unmoored from their cosmological justification, a process that appears to be a feature of both the early Chinese and recent Western “discoveries” of ritual as an abstract concept. For this reason, the Ritual Authority manuscripts are a particularly useful place to begin problematizing the full significance of ritual’s place in the Chinese empire. In these texts we can find a clearer picture of how the theorization of ritual psychology came to be formed. 10The “Discovery” of Ritual  In this study it is argued that the Ritual Authority manuscripts demonstrate the development of a theorization of the psychology underlying the performance and conduct of li, or ritual propriety. That a concept describing a much narrower set of inherited cultural norms and ritual traditions would be employed to fill the explanatory gap created by this “discovery” of an abstract quality should not surprise us. This is very nearly a mirror image of the historical and intellectual process through which the concept of “ritual” also came to be used to fill an explanatory gap within Western intellectual circles much more recently. The timing of this focus on ritual in the West, which occurred in tandem with the development of the academic fields of religious studies and anthropology, is not a coincidence. It seems likely that the encounter with a wide variety of cultural “Others” during the ages of exploration and early colonialism resulted in an intellectual demand for a concept that could be used to describe some universal feature of human culture. It is not a difficult conceptual leap from Catholic liturgy to other cultural practices that involve some or all of the features that we now put under the heading of ritual: rehearsed, repetitive or symbolic actions whose causal relationship with their ultimate goal is opaque. We can imagine that similar leaps have been made before.  In early China, the recognition of this “abstract quality” underlying certain social interactions and behaviours would also produce the need for a term that could provide the explanatory power necessary to describe it. The availability of new ideas about human nature provided the intellectual framework through which to conceptualize a theory of ritual psychology. In this case, the conceptual leap from a term that described the inherited ritual 11traditions and aristocratic norms of the Central Plains cultures to a more robust concept that included this “abstract” quality and its implications for moral psychology is also not difficult to imagine. What is particularly notable about the Chinese case, however, is that this “discovery” would become a major feature of an ideology dedicated to offering political solutions to a society perceived to be in decline. Ritual in China  The concept of “ritual” (li 禮) has occupied a prominent place in the social and political history of China to a degree that demands attention. Li is arguably a heavily-laden term, representing a broad set of issues relating to personal conduct, filial respect, and ancestral veneration. It also implicitly contains beliefs about the inherently hierarchical structure of human society and the need for a ruler to manage and maintain the state’s moral order. Ritual practices were a major focus of the imperial state’s claims to legitimacy, and the empire was tasked with keeping a close eye on astrological signs, maintaining regular sacrifices to Heaven and sustaining the vast logistics of the ancestral cult throughout its territory.  16 A rich body of ethical, religious and philosophical thought which focused on the importance of ritual has long stood at the centre of Chinese intellectual life. With the incorporation of Confucian texts into the imperial state’s civil service examination system, li was assured a place at the very centre of discussions of ethics and politics until at least the end of the imperial government structure in the early twentieth century. This means that this history of ritual  Robert Campany, for example, notes that the Chinese empire can be described as being “among other 16things, a religious system for the maintenance and control of relations with divine powers,” Making Transcendents: Ascetics and Social Memory in Early Medieval China (Honolulu: University of Hawai’i Press, 2009), 198.12as a focus in Chinese thought and politics is thoroughly entangled with the fortunes of Confucianism, at least since the Warring States period. Confucian thought formed the framework within which the conceptualization of ritual would take shape and be transmitted, and this would also cause this particular concept of ritual to become tied to the intellectual and religious commitments that defined the Confucian worldview. Because of this, the study of ritual in China has largely taken place under the broad heading of the study of Confucian thought. Contemporary attempts to find a meaningful definition of Confucianism have also, in some cases, shifted away from a narrow focus on the intellectual content of Confucianism as a scholarly and philosophical tradition and towards including ritual practice as both a defining feature of this tradition and as a powerful means of transmitting the tradition well into the twenty-first century.  In this sense, Confucianism is not only the tradition that helped shape the history of ritual in China, but is also a tradition largely defined by imperial China’s ritual practices. Studies of Confucianism are, for example, now looking at the history of the Confucian temple as a locus for commitment to the tradition and as a source for the creation of the state cult of Confucius, revealing how these specific ritual practices became intertwined with the imperial state itself.  17The end of the imperial state apparatus in 1911 created a disjunction between Confucianism and the state, raising questions about what would actually constitute a Confucian tradition in a post-imperial China. The re-invention of Confucianism after 1911 China tended to focus on the intellectual and moral traditions of the core early texts of the tradition, and on the “religious” and  See, for example, Thomas A. Wilson. "The Ritual Formation of Confucian Orthodoxy and the 17Descendants of the Sage,” The Journal of Asian Studies 55.3 (1996). For a diachronic study of religious and political dimensions of the Confucian temple, see Julia K. Murray, “‘Idols’ in the Temple: Icons and the Cult of Confucius,” The Journal of Asian Studies 68.2 (2009). 13“philosophical” components that could be found within them. In contrast to this, scholars have more recently argued that this presents a misleading narrative of the history of the Confucian tradition. We can see arguments now that ritual has been a more stable constitutive element of this tradition than any specific ethical precept or textual tradition. For example, Anna Sun has argued that “ritual has been the fundamental element that holds this tradition together through thousands of years of fractions and discontinuities,” and that “Confucian rituals have been and will possibly remain the most salient component of this complex tradition, from the time of Confucius’ teaching to the dawn of the twenty-first century.”  In their innovative sociological 18research, Sebastien Billioud and Joel Thoraval have investigated the ways that Confucian rituals have been a major feature of a modern resurgence of interest in this tradition, particularly as a point of overlap and contention between a grass-roots “popular” Confucianism (minjian rujia 民間儒家) and the state-organized ceremonies that celebrate “tutelary figures of Chinese civilization” for the purposes of laying claim to political legitimacy.  What this new work shows 19is that ritual not only occupies a place of central prominence within the Confucian tradition, but is also one of its defining features.  The difficulty of extricating the concept of ritual from the history of Confucianism as an ethical tradition has had the effect of hiding in plain view an issue that deserves more focus than it has so far received. This issue is regarding the question of why it was the case that ritual practices would come to be so richly conceptualized in the first place as an object of such  Anna Sun, Confucianism as a World Religion: Contested Histories and Contemporary Realities 18(Princeton: Princeton UP, 2013), 7. Sébastien Billioud and Joël Thoraval, The Sage and the People: The Confucian Revival in China 19(Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2014).14urgency and concern. How and why this came to be is itself an extraordinary fact, and one that has yet to be fully examined. Its significance has bearing on precisely how we understand ritual to have played a role in Chinese political and social history. The formation of Confucianism also serves as an important early historical example of ritual acquiring a theoretical framework and serving as a key component of early political theory. If we shift our focus away from the question of what influence Confucianism had on the formation of the early Chinese state, we are able to ask the equally important question of what role ritual specifically had in this formation. This shift in focus also makes it possible to draw on the vocabulary and methodological toolkit of the burgeoning field of Ritual Studies.  As Yuri Pines has noted, the “unique role played by ritual in Chinese society” is finally beginning to attract some attention; however, in his view the studies that have looked at this question have been limited and have employed a “theoretical framework” that has proven “inadequate.”  In his own influential research, Pines has argued that the Zuo zhuan 左傳, a 20historiographical work detailing the events of the Spring and Autumn period, provides evidence which allows us to trace the development of the concept of ritual in this early pre-Confucian time-period.  As will be discussed in Chapter Two of this study, there remains some question as 21to whether or not the Zuo zhuan can indeed be taken as an authentic source of history for this early time period, but at the very least Pines’ work should be taken seriously as a call for a deeper investigation into this “unique role” played by ritual in Chinese society. His approach  Yuri Pines, “Disputers of the Li: Breakthroughs in the Concepts of Ritual in Preimperial China,” Asia 20Major 13 (2000), 2. In making this point, Pines draws on James Laidlaw, “On Theatre and Theory: Reflections on Ritual in Imperial Chinese Politics,” in Joseph P. McDermott (ed.), State and Court Ritual in China (Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1999).  Yuri Pines, Foundations of Confucian Thought: Intellectual Life in the Chunqiu Period (722-453 BCE) 21(Honolulu : University of Hawai'i Press, 2002).15represents a serious attempt to investigate how ritual-political norms came to be conceptualized by Spring and Autumn statesmen as a solution to the mounting political crises of the Eastern Zhou, a necessary first step towards seriously considering the question of how ritual came to occupy such an important place in Chinese society in a way that is not entirely limited to the study of Confucian thought.  Ultimately, Pines deliberately avoids raising questions about the broader implications of this putative historical development, preferring to engage in an “internal” study of the development of ritual within early China that does not employ a Western ritual theoretical framework. This wariness in making use of the theoretical insights of Ritual Studies is understandable, and it would be a mistake to assume that the correct approach to investigating the significance of the conceptualization of ritual in early China would simply involve the application of a set of theoretical terms from contemporary ritual scholarship to early China. One possible danger of such an approach would be the careless insertion of particular cultural assumptions from Western studies of religion into early China. The obvious advantage of Pines’ “internal” approach is that it largely avoids any such dangers. It must also be noted that the field of Ritual Studies does not provide a toolset to “decode” specific cultural and historical examples of ritual. If anything, the recent collaborative and interdisciplinary work of this new area of research has shown the opposite: that “ritual,” as a constructed tool of analysis, remains in need of further refinement. Nevertheless, for reasons to be discussed below, I believe that the advantages of applying concepts from Ritual Studies outweigh any supposed disadvantages.  It should also be noted that there are some indications that scholarship is beginning to more explicitly draw on the concepts of Ritual Studies. One example is the work of K.E. 16Brashier, who has made use of the insights from performance theory to study the place of ancestral memory in early China.  More relevant to this study is the work of Michael Puett, who 22has written extensively on the concept of ritual in early China, and also the work of Ori Tavor who has noted the theorization of ritual practices as a "corporal technology.”  In light of this 23recent scholarship, now would seem to be the moment to begin fully addressing the question of how the study of ritual theory contributes to our understanding of how li emerged to become such a prominent theme in Chinese religious and political life.  Towards this goal of being more explicit about our assumptions regarding ritual, the application of ideas from Ritual Studies offers at least two advantages. First, Ritual Studies has provided a new means for interdisciplinary conversation about the topic of ritual.  The 24relationship between the study of ritual in early China and the field of Ritual Studies needs to be a dialectic, with insights from both areas contributing to each other. Second, although internal studies of ritual in early China are necessary and do not “need” the terminology of ritual studies in order to provide important insights into this topic, they also cannot fully escape the problem of importing cultural and methodological assumptions into their conclusions. The danger of a study of the Chinese conceptualization of ritual that does not adequately problematize the concept of  K.E. Brashier, Ancestral Memory in Early China (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Asia Centre 22for the Harvard-Yenching Institute, 2011). For just one example of Michael Puett’s writing on the subject see his article on the “Liyun” (禮運) 23chapter of the Record of Rites as an example of early Chinese theories of ritual: “Ritualization as Domestication: Ritual Theory from Classical China,” in Ritual Dynamics and the Science of Ritual Vol. 1, ed. Axel Michaels (Weisbaden: Harrossowitz Verlag, 2010). See also his contributions to Seligman et al., Ritual and its Consequences Ritual: An Essay on the Limits of Sincerity (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008). For Ori Tavor’s work, see “Xunzi's Theory of Ritual Revisited: Reading Ritual as Corporeal Technology,” Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 12.3 (2013). For an insights into the formation of Ritual Studies, see Ronald L. Grimes, Beginnings in Ritual Studies 24(Columbia, S.C.: University of South Carolina Press, 1995).17ritual is that it risks uncritically appropriating assumptions about ritual into its analysis. This problem can be seen when we examine the standard narrative of how li first came to acquire its significance as an ethical concept in early China. To find what we might call a consensus view on the place of ritual in early China, one place to look would be a popular undergraduate textbook on Chinese history. In Valerie Hansen’s The Open Empire: A History of China to 1600, the concept of ritual first appears in reference to Confucius: In his concept of ritual (li), Confucius also introduced something new. His contemporaries used the term to refer to specific rituals, but Confucius recognized an abstract quality common to them that applied to the forms of all social interactions. If men could learn to employ this quality, he taught, society could be reformed. The word ritual may today suggest the rigid following of fixed forms that deny the individual an opportunity for self expression. But to Confucius, ritual offered the individual the best opportunity to develop his own humaneness (ren), an essential quality also translated as “benevolence,” “goodness,” “exemplary humanity,” and “manhood-at-its-best.”  25Hansen’s description manages to be both succinct and thorough, and provides ample space for considering the implications of these claims. There are four distinct elements to Hansen’s description that should be considered separately: (1) the Chinese term li 禮 can be translated as “ritual”, (2) that Confucius was able to identify an “abstract quality” within all rituals that went beyond the description of specific rituals, (3) that for Confucius, ritual offered an opportunity for both self-expression and the development of interior moral virtues, and finally (4) that Confucius' claims were novel, which suggests a clean distinction between ritual as a set of practices and its later overt theorization by Confucius and his followers.  The relationship between “ritual” and li is the first issue. To some extent this is mainly a problem of translation, and in specific instances in which someone is writing about  Valerie Hansen, The Open Empire: A History of China to 1600 (New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 252000), 70.18Confucianism or Chinese ritual practice it is understandable that a convenient and recognizable term like “ritual” should be employed to convey the meaning of li, if accompanied with some additional qualifications to clarify precisely what ritual means in this context. In some cases, “ritual” or “the rites” may be used as a translation,  while other writers may prefer to employ the 26narrower term “ritual propriety”  to indicate the normative component of li and the fact that it 27can refer to etiquette and deportment. Still others may seek to avoid the problem altogether by maintaining use of the Chinese term li in order to avoid the connotations of any specific English term, or else to allow for the shifting semantic range of the term over time.  There are clear 28advantages to this approach, as it makes it possible for li to be defined and discussed in “native” terms of discourse without presuming that the concept’s full range of meaning can be contained by a single English term. Unfortunately, when it comes time to define and discuss li, it becomes difficult to do so without making reference to the suite of terms that often do fall under the heading of ritual, such as ceremony or rites. At the very least this indicates that regardless of one’s particular choice of translation, some sort of conceptual analysis of what constitutes “ritual” and how this relates to the full semantic range of li is required.  For example, Philip J. Ivanhoe explains that “the basic structure of moral life was a constellation of 26such obligations defined by a set of rituals and social practices known as the ‘rites’ (li 禮).” Philip J. Ivanhoe, Ethics in the Confucian Tradition (Indianapolis: Hackett, 2002), 1. Pines, Foundations of Confucian Thought, also uses the term “ritual” to translate li. One example is David Schaberg, A Patterned Past: Form and Thought in Early Chinese 27Historiography (Cambridge,  Mass.: Harvard University Asia Center, 2001). This is the approach taken by Masayuki Sato, although he notes that in recent years, the term “ritual” 28has been used as the dominant translation of li due largely to the greater meaning attributed to this term since the nineteenth century, in addition to the fact that Western scholars have of late begun to “ponder the philosophical meanings of rituals”, Sato, The Confucian Quest for Order: The Origin and Formation of the Political Thought of Xun Zi (Leiden: Brill, 2003), 166.19 The second issue is regarding Confucius’ recognition of an “abstract quality” within the concept of li. A similar wording is employed by Masayuki Sato who, in his study of the intellectual origins of thought of late Warring States thinker, Xunzi, suggests that “contrary to the general impression, the concept of li had reached a fairly high level of abstraction before Xun Zi’s articulation.”  Sato presents an analysis of the ways that the concept of li underwent 29semantic change, noting that the “theoretical conceptualization of li seems to have been a product of the rise of analytical discourse by the Jixia Academy thinkers,”  the mid to late 30Warring States scholars who debated and taught at schools supported under the auspices of the King of Qi 齊. In his insightful and thorough analysis, Sato comes very close to drawing out this fact of li acquiring a theoretical framework as a discrete issue of investigation, but his interest in this particular study is dedicated to elucidating the intellectual context within which Xunzi developed his own syncretic Confucian theory of li. As early as 1992, Robert Campany also pointed to Xunzi in his own call for an approach that took this thinker seriously as a ritual theorist on terms comparable to Émile Durkheim.  Clearly, the Confucian concept of li acquired 31a theoretical framework at least in the work of Xunzi, whose essay, “Discourse on Ritual” (Lilun 禮論) is devoted explicitly to the discussion of and apologia for li. However, as Hansen points out in her summary, some sort of abstract component to li was already being at least implied in the thought of Confucius, and, as Sato demonstrates, this abstract quality continued to be developed throughout the Warring States period.  Sato, Confucian Quest, 235.29 Sato, Confucian Quest, 235.30 Robert Campany, “Xunzi and Durkheim as Theorists of Ritual,” in Discourse and Practice, ed. by 31Frank Reynolds and David Trace, 197-231 (Albany : State University of New York Press, 1992).20 The third claim of Hansen’s is regarding the potential that ritual presents for Confucius for self-expression as well as for interior psychological moral development. This is a topic richly explored in the field of Confucian ethics,  and also the key insight that is offered by the Guodian 32manuscripts being examined in the present study. That Hansen feels the need to contrast Confucius’s view on ritual with the “rigid following of fixed forms” is also telling, and raises further questions about how to negotiate the meaning of li with the implications attached to the concept of ritual. This connects to what Geir Sigurðsson describes as the “modern opprobrium of ritual,” noting an expectation that “Westerners will find the notion of ‘ritual propriety’ rather unattractive, hinting as it does at formal, stagnant, predetermined behavior.”  Hansen’s claim 33suggests that Confucius saw something beyond these rigid and fixed practices, and discovered the capacity for these prescribed actions to affect people’s interiority.  This point especially may 34be an indication of the importing of assumptions about what constitutes “ritual,” and the very possibly anachronistic “opprobrium” derived from this view. As Seligman et al. also note, there is the additional danger of importing a Christian, and, more narrowly, Protestant set of assumptions into our reading of ritual activities.  35 This is so vast a field that only a few examples can be provided here. For English language scholarship, 32the reader is directed to David S. Nivison, The Ways of Confucianism: Investigations in Chinese Philosophy, ed. Bryan W. Van Norden (Chicago: Open Court, 1996), Philip J. Ivanhoe, Ethics in the Confucian Tradition (Indianapolis: Hackett, 2002),  and Antonio S. Cua, Human Nature, Ritual, and History: Studies in Xunzi and Chinese Philosophy (Washington, D.C.: Catholic University of America Press, 2005). Geir Sigurðsson, Confucian Propriety and Ritual Learning: A Philosophical Interpretation (Albany: 33State University of New York Press, 2015), 13-17. Buried within this view there is, arguably, another assumption, that li historically referred to specific 34rituals, which are often taken narrowly to mean religious sacrifices. This view may be accurate, but in light of the fact that, as will be shown in Chapter One of this study, in the Warring States the term referred with relative consistency to social norms and mores, this view may need to be further problematized as well. Seligman et al., Ritual and Its Consequences.3521 The fourth issue comes directly out of the third. The suggestion that Confucius did something novel with this active speculation about the psychological and social effects of ritual practices also suggests that, prior to his insight, there was no clear sense of ritual necessarily “doing” anything. It is clear that rituals and ceremonies occupied a central position in the political and religious life of China before Confucius,  but to what extent people actively 36thought about ritual as a discrete subject of consideration or were aware of the strategic or psychological value of ritual as such remains an open question.  Prior to the historiographical 37accounts of the Spring and Autumn period, we have scant textual resources to work with, and are largely left trying to triangulate from information gleaned from archaeological objects, bronze vessel inscriptions, and oracle bones to understand early ritual practices.  It is beyond the scope 38of this paper to address the question of what ideas or folk theories of ritual may have predated Confucius, but when considering the insights that derived from the Confucian focus on ritual practices we should also consider the possibility that there was not necessarily a pure distinction between ritual as praxis and ritual as a theorized object of study. A more focused and fully conscious appreciation of the importance of ritual may have led to the particularly nuanced theory of ritual psychology that we find in the Ritual Authority manuscripts, but we should not  Li Feng, for example, argues that descriptions of ceremonies of the Western Zhou indicate the use of 36ceremonies to establish the legitimacy of the Zhou state in this early period, Bureaucracy and the State in Early China: Governing the Western Zhou (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2008). As noted above, one exception would be Yuri Pines, who contends that we can find evidence of the 37development among Spring and Autumn statesmen of an awareness of li as a system of norms that needed to be employed to solve the political crisis of interstate conflict. Beides Li Feng’s work, noted above, Zhou uses of ritual are examined by Martin Kern, “Bronze 38Inscriptions, The Shijing and the Shangshu: The Evolution of the Ancestral Sacrifice During the Western Zhou,” in Early Chinese Religion, Part One: Shang Through Han (1250 BC - 220 AD), ed. by John Lagerwey and Marc Kalinowsky (Leiden: Brill, 2009),  and Lothar von Falkenhausen, “Late Western Zhou Taste,” Études Chinoises 18.1. It is often difficult to separate actual early ritual practices from textual accounts of them, which may have been shaped by political and religious developments of a later period.22necessarily assume a definitive failure to acknowledge ritual’s significance prior to the Confucian emphasis on li. Instead, the theorization of ritual in China may be a more nuanced development rather than a sudden epiphany.  Taking a closer look at our assumptions about the history of li exposes some areas where our conclusions may be unwarranted, or at least demand further nuance. Although it is not my intention to answer all of these important issues that have been raised, it is the contention of this study that by taking seriously the concept of ritual as a recognizable feature of the human experience it is possible to be more explicit about our assertions regarding the history of ritual in China. The striking prominence of a conceptual appreciation of ritual in the social and political life of China from its pre-imperial period right up to at least the twentieth century has obscured an important academic question that can only be fully addressed when we take ritual seriously as feature of human history, and when we make use of this approach to ask some of these basic questions about the origins and significance of China’s unique focus on the question of ritual. Structure and Methodology  This study takes the Ritual Authority manuscripts as evidence of a “discovery” of ritual that has intriguing parallels to the development of similar theories in the West. Using these texts as a case study of the theorization of ritual by Confucian thinkers in the Warring States period, this study considers the question of what prompted this theorization and how this historically specific example of such a theorization took shape. In order to fully consider these questions, it is necessary to first flesh out the concept of ritual as a term of analysis that can be applied to a 23variety of cultural and historical cases, and then to ask how the particular nature of ritual practices would constrain and shape the fortunes of the political theory that emphasized them.  Chapter One of this study sets the parameters of this study by addressing these questions. This chapter constructs a working definition of “ritual,” drawing on the conceptual and terminological insights offered by the field of ritual studies. Following this is an examination of the concept of li 禮, which carried the conceptual weight of the early Confucian theorization of ritual. A close reading of primary sources from the Warring States reveals that li was not exclusively of importance to Confucian writers. This term conveyed widely understood social mores and rules of etiquette in early Chinese society and carried implications regarding notions of public order and political dynamics. For many thinkers these mores and rules were also seen as the constitutive elements of their very civilization, and so they were linked to a specific and normative sense of tradition and cultural refinement. When these Warring States writers provide concrete examples to express or describe li, they turn to the ritualized practices of submission and respect, the sumptuary rules of clothing, the bodily restrictions of interactions between the sexes, and political ceremonies. In this way, the mores and expectations of li are more narrowly enacted through these specific employments of ritualized activities.   Chapter Two examines the implications of these insights, particularly in the political sphere. The nature of ritualized practices is such that they tend to both rely on and re-create historical authority. For the Confucian thinkers who emphasized the role of li within the political sphere, this was particularly significant because the political and social changes of the Warring States period presented a very real threat to this historical authority. Li was, therefore, inevitably embroiled within larger debates about the nature of tradition and the historically contingent 24nature of specific cultural practices. This is made especially clear in examples where a parallel concept of su 俗, or “social customs,” is used to talk about social customs in terms that did not carry the same entanglements of historical authority as li. In these discussions of social customs, it is argued that the cultural practices of the Zhou state are historically contingent, and can therefore be reformed, changed or abandoned when doing so benefits the state and its populace.   Chapter Three looks at the threat posed to Confucian ideas by new ideas regarding political authority. The Warring States period was marked by the development of increasingly centralized territorial states, and the rulers of these states were seeking new ways of centralizing their authority and administrating their regions. The drive towards centralization was exacerbated by the rise of intensified practices of total war, which demanded that states be able to efficiently and consistently draw upon the labour and resources of highly populated states. The need to push people within the state apparatus towards performing their narrowly defined bureaucratic tasks was at odds with the Confucian view of a more personalized form of government that emphasized people’s moral and emotional dispositions. In combination with the threats to the historical authority of Confucian practices, these new approaches to political authority would compel Confucian thinkers to answer their opponents in a way that both defended their views and offered skeptical statesmen a convincing argument of how their ideas could be used as effective tools of state control.  In Chapter Four, we finally turn to the Ritual Authority manuscripts that prompted this study. These texts represent an attempt to make use of the new conceptual vocabulary of this dynamic intellectual period to respond to these threats to a Confucian political theory. The result is a nuanced theory of ritual psychology that was at once oriented towards the past and yet also 25deeply innovative. The views of ritual offered in these texts are shaped by and directed towards the problem of cultivating political authority, but they offer a compelling argument for why ritualized practices can be an effective tool for the state to manage their increasingly complex administrative needs. By focusing on the emotional elements of human interpersonal dynamics, this theory appears to address some of the weaknesses of the more narrow coercive strand of thought seen in the Legalist theories of authority.  The conclusion of this study considers some of the potential implications of this development of a theory of ritual psychology. Three avenues of potential future research are suggested: first, regarding the role of this theorization of ritual practices in the ongoing development of ideas about li in the early empire; second, regarding the development of state institutions and political practices during the early empire; and third, regarding the significance of this specific historical case study to our understanding of ritual more broadly. This study should be of interest not only to scholars of early China, but also to those outside the field. The example provided by these manuscripts will hopefully shed light on how people identify, speculate about, and make use of ritualized behaviour not only for the academic study of cultures but also as a means for shaping their world. This has implications for our understanding of ritual as a phenomenon of human behaviour, and as a feature of the evolution of the political state. 
26Chapter 1: Theories of Ritual and Propriety Introduction  One of the central claims of this study is that the Ritual Authority manuscripts evince the development of a conceptually rich theory of ritual psychology that overlaps significantly with the more recent emergence of theories of ritual in the West. This claim suggests parallel intellectual innovations in two very distinct cultural and historical settings, and so it will be necessary to clarify what is meant when using the analytical term “ritual,” and how this is distinct from the early Chinese concept of li 禮. The term “ritual” is being employed as a broader concept that transcends specific historical settings, while li refers to a narrower set of practices specific to early China. The purpose of this chapter is to construct a working definition first of “ritual” as a useful term of academic analysis that can be applied across cultures, and then to consider the semantic range and normative implications of the concept of li, not only as it is defined by Confucian writers but also by a broader spectrum of thinkers in the Warring States period.  The concept of li in early China referred to a normative set of social rules and ritual practices that were used to define the proper social customs specific to the “civilized” people of the central states (Zhongguo 中國). In the Ritual Authority manuscripts, it was also closely related to yue 樂, a term that refers most broadly to “music,” but also more narrowly to the ritualized performance of music and dance, a complex affair involving an array of affective and aesthetic components such as bronze bells and costumes, and which also had religious and 27ceremonial implications due to their additional intended audience of ancestral spirits.  These 39twin concepts of ritual propriety and musical performance are the affective core of a larger set of cultural traditions that the texts present as tools necessary for creating a stable and functioning political state, including the tradition of recorded Histories (shi 史) and the poetic Odes (shi 詩). Because li and yue refer to practices that carry the weight of historical authority through their association with a perceived cultural legacy, they involve specific and normative implications not present in the academic term “ritual,” which is intended to describe a phenomenon of human behaviour that is not specific to any one cultural tradition. The idea of li, on the other hand, could be used to delineate ethnic or class boundaries through its association with specific clothing and hair-styles, social mores and cultivated court etiquette, as well as through the political-ritual system of the Yellow River Valley ruling classes dating back to the semi-mythical Xia dynasty.  Embedded in the claim that this suite of perfected traditions could be used to achieve political ends is the assertion that there is something inherent to human psychology that makes these practices uniquely effective in transforming people’s behaviour. It is in this speculation about the unique power of li that we can see the development of a theory of something innate to human beings that the practices of ritual propriety and musical performances evoke. This more universal phenomenon is what this study refers to as ritual psychology, a term that also requires some unpacking and justification, as early Chinese thinkers were conceptualizing human psychology in ways that are distinct from today. The psychological features of this theory were made possible by philosophical developments in the mid-Warring States period. Theories of  See Lothar von Falkenhausen, Suspended Music: Chime-Bells in the Culture of Bronze Age China 39(Berkeley: University of California Press, 1993).28medicine and meditation occurred alongside political arguments that mirror, in many ways, those of the European Enlightenment over the relationship of the individual and the state.  These discussions led to new innovative concepts that thinkers in this period would be compelled to factor into their arguments. Of particular pertinence was the concept of human nature (xing 性), a term that appears to have been made prominent by the thinker Yang Zhu 楊朱 (fl. c. 350 BCE)  40who argued that the fundamental nature of human beings, including the senses, desires, and natural lifespans of their physical bodies, was derived directly from Heaven (Tian 天) and should not be subjugated by the pressures and obligations of the political state or the arbitrary moral directives of people like Confucius or his followers.  Answering the objections of people like 41Yang Zhu required justifying political and moral arguments by rooting them in discussions about the innate nature of human beings.  In conjunction with these discussions of human nature was the development of other theories of the mind and body that centred especially on the concept of xin ⼼心. This term originally referred literally to the physical organ of the heart, but by the Warring States period came to refer more generally to the locus of cognition and the emotions. By extension, it came to be the term used in discussions of human psychology in the abstract. Attached to these discussions of psychology was another important term, qing 情, which could simply mean the  No writings by Yang Zhu himself have survived to the present, and many of his ideas need to be pieced 40together by later “Yangist” writings and by often pejorative references to him by critics. The assessments of his views that I have presented here are based most heavily on the Yangist text “Robber Zhi,” from the Zhuangzi text. See John J. Emerson, “Yang Chu’s Discovery of the Body,” Philosophy East and West, 46.4 (1996), 41A.C. Graham, “The Right to Selfishness: Yangism, Later Mohism, Chuang Tzu,” in Individualism and Holism: Studies in Confucian and Taoist Values, ed. by Donald J. Munro (Ann Arbor: Center for Chinese Studies, University of Michigan, 1985), and Thomasine Kushner, “Yang Chu: Ethical Egoist in Ancient China,” Journal of Chinese Philosophy 7.4 (1980).29“essence” of something, but in discussions of psychology tended to mean instead emotions, or “emotional dispositions.”   Theories of psychology turned on these concepts, and were further 42attached to the particular understanding of the cosmos and body that held at this time. This understanding involves additional concepts such as qi 氣, the cosmic “pneuma,” or vital energy of the body, and by extension to the individual emotional responses within the body that would take form in response to specific situations. This concept was of particular importance to writings on meditation techniques, which largely focused on the cultivation of qi in a refined form, and the stabilization of emotional responses through breathing exercises and calisthenics.  These 43concepts will be further discussed in Chapter Four of this study, but for now it should be noted that speculation about human nature, the mind, and the emotions became prevalent around the middle of the Warring States period, and provided the conceptual framework for the theory of ritual psychology that we see in the Guodian manuscripts. This speculation about human nature touched on a wide array of intellectual fields, shaping discourse on the emotions, physical and spiritual exercises, and views on ethics and politics.  The Guodian manuscripts drew on and responded to these conceptual innovations  about human nature and psychology and used them to justify a comprehensive picture of the socio-political order with the practices of ritual propriety at its centre. The result of this is a theorized concept of ritual psychology that is employed to explain why the specific culturally transmitted practices of li are so effective as a mechanism for achieving social stability. They argue that the  Michael Puett, “The Ethics of Responding Properly: The Notion of Qing in Early Chinese Thought,” in 42Love and Emotions in Traditional Chinese Literature, ed. Halvor Eifring (Leiden: Brill, 2004). See especially Harold D. Roth, Original Tao: Inward Training and the Foundations of Taoist Mysticism 43(New York: Columbia University Press, 1999).30practices of li make use of innate psychological tendencies. The moral and psychological dispositions of human beings are shaped by their interactions with the world, and there is something particularly potent about both music and ritual propriety in determining the way that these moral dispositions are shaped.  Understanding the full scope of this intellectual development requires noting an additional layer of significance, that of “ritual” as a term of analysis. The political arguments of the Guodian texts are only made possible by the ability to conceptualize ritual behaviour in the abstract. Because this conceptual framework is built out of the ideas about human nature and psychology discussed above, it goes beyond the specifics of li as a set of inherited traditions and speaks instead of a tendency that is, by definition, deemed to be universal. Thinkers in early China were attempting to speculate about and understand an intuitively apparent behavioural tendency in human beings that, it will be argued here, overlaps significantly with the contemporary concept of “ritual” that developed in Western academia more recently. To the extent that ritual can in fact be understood as a cross-cultural phenomenon significant to how humans behave in the world, an examination of the historical importance of this early Chinese speculation about ritual psychology requires us to more thoroughly address this concept of ritual and define its parameters.  In effect, this involves the investigation of two historically distinct theoretical constructions: the contemporary academic theory of ritual, and the early Chinese theory regarding the psychological and political value of the practice of li. This study aims to investigate not only the development of ideas of li in early China but also to highlight the historical significance of a conscious application of ritual to answer political and social problems 31during a key moment in China’s early state formation. This requires a clear idea of what ritual means as a theoretical term of analysis before applying this analysis to the specific setting of Warring States China. This chapter will attempt to lay out this approach in two parts: first, an attempt to provide a working definition of ritual from the perspective of contemporary ritual studies; and second, examining the meaning and implications of li in Warring States political discourse. Finally, this chapter will conclude by considering some of the ways that the cultural values implied by li may have determined the way that a theory of ritual in early China would ultimately take shape. Defining Ritual  Talal Asad offers a tentative genealogy of how the concept of ritual came to be the focus of a theoretical focus in the West by examining the change in meanings over time in the entries for “ritual” and “rite” in the Encyclopedia Britannica.  Here, he notes that the original sense in 44which ritual was defined was as a text that instructed the reader in performing divine service in a particular church or diocese. By 1797, the entry acknowledges that the pre-Christian world also had their own “rituals” that explained to them how to perform their own religious ceremonies. Rather suddenly, however, we see in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century the appearance of ritual in a sense that we now take it. In the 1910 edition, when a major change occurs to the entry for “ritual,” it not only makes references to the works of people like Tylor, Frazer, Robertson Smith and Mauss, but also gives a much broader definition to the term, allowing that ritual applied not only to religion but also described a type of routine behaviour  Talal Asad, “Toward a Genealogy of the Concept of Ritual, in W. James and D.H. Johnson (eds.) 44Vernacular Christianity. Essays in the Social Anthropology of Religion (Oxford: JASO, 1988), 73-87. 32that symbolizes or expresses something. It was seen as a crucial part of religion, but by virtue of its routinized nature it also existed in other observances which were not strictly religious in character. In short, two concomitant changes occurred in its understanding: it now described a type of behaviour rather than a manual of behaviour; and it was no longer restricted to religion. According to Asad, another more important change underlies this semantic shift. Not only had ritual been redefined from a manual of behaviour to a type of behaviour, but it had come to be defined as symbolic behaviour, which was held to be distinct from practical, i.e. technically effective, behaviour. This dichotomy between the symbolic and the practical meshes neatly with the preferences of the Reformation, where the interior life of belief was held to be supreme, while ritual was deemed to be empty form.  Asad’s work was continued and in some ways refined by Barbara H. Boudewijnse  and 45Jan N. Bremmer , who have examined the ways that the concept of ritual was further developed 46within specific European regional and academic contexts. Both thinkers further problematize the ways that the conceptualization of ritual was shaped by the particular cultural and academic contexts within which it occurred. Bremmer argues that the concept of ritual took on particular connotations depending on whether its usage was being employed within a Protestant or a Catholic context, or else by Orientalists who were using the term to describe “their own ritual texts, in particular the Rig-Veda.”  According to Boudewijnse, the term in its own recognized 47 Barbara H. Boudewijnse, “The Conceptualisation of Ritual. A History of its Problematic Aspects”, 45Jaarboek poor Liturgieonderzoek 11. Jan N. Bremmer, “‘Religion’, ‘Ritual’ and the Opposition ‘Sacred vs. Profane’. Notes towards a 46Terminological ‘Genealogy’”, in Fritz Graf (ed.), Ansichten griechischer Rituale. Geburtstags-Symposium für Walter Burkert. Castelen bei Basel 15. bis 18. März 1996 (Stuttgart: Teubner, 1998), 9-32. Bremmer, Notes, 16.4733academic sense finds its origins largely in the work of William Robertson Smith. The term was adopted by Frazer, then by English classical and anthropological circles, later by Durkheim in France, and eventually in other parts of Europe.  Bremmer concludes that this particular 48historical context and the “fact that we can locate the moment of the birth of the terms discussed with a fair amount of accuracy suggests that contemporary users should remain conscious of their ‘invention’. The terms are not faithful reflections of reality but scholarly constructs of which the definitions remain up for negotiation and adaptation.”  49 The study of ritual continues to be plagued by problems of definition, and there has so far been little consensus on where to draw meaningful boundaries around the concept. It has proven particularly difficult to provide a definitive list of features necessary for a given act to be considered a ritual which cannot find an exception. Despite this difficulty, many scholars persist in using the term, largely on the basis of their intuitive sense of what constitutes a ritual. The ability to recognize an example of ritual persists in discussions of human activity, even if the term itself remains disputed. These ritual actions seem to be set apart from ordinary behaviour, and there are certain characteristics of these supposed ritual actions that appear with frequency, even if it continues to be difficult to use these characteristics to provide a clean definition of ritual. Most commonly, these characteristics include the presence of formality, a fixed script for the performance of that activity, repetition and stereotypy, and what Roy Rappaport has  Bremmer traces the history of the term’s adoption in Germany, Holland and Italy. Bremmer, “Notes,” 4818-22. Bremmer, “Notes,” 31.4934described as a “lack of material efficacy,” but which many now describe as “opaque causality.”  50While “ordinary" instrumental actions have a recognizable connection to the purported purpose of that action, this does not appear to be the case with ritual.  To many observers, this lack of apparent instrumental value to ritual action demands an explanation. In response to this demand, explanations of the purpose behind ritual have often focused on the symbolic or metaphorical content of ritual behaviour, or to the function of ritual within human societies. However, answering the question of what ritual is for before explaining what it is may be putting the cart before the horse. Roy Rappaport, in his own attempt to provide a definition, deliberately sought to avoid these elements which have come to be expected in discussions of ritual. As he notes, this definition obviously does not stipulate what ritual is “about” or what it is “for.” It is neither substantive nor functional, but gives primacy to the sensible features common to rituals always and everywhere, the features that may, in fact, lead us to recognize events as rituals in the first place.  51He also notes the apparent ubiquity of ritual when he claims that “no society is devoid of what a reasonable observer would recognize as ritual.”  This apparently pervasive cross-cultural 52presence of ritual actions appears to be at odds with the ongoing difficulty in defining ritual in a way that provides it with analytic value. If taken on their own, these most common elements, such as repetitiveness or formalism, can potentially apply to an extremely broad set of human  Roy A. Rappaport, Ritual and Religion in the Making of Humanity (Cambridge: Cambridge University 50Press, 1999). Stanley Tambiah, for his performative theory of ritual, also focuses on the way that ritual actions are characterized “in varying degree by formality (conventionality), stereotypy (rigidity), condensation (fusion), and redundancy (repetition),” “A Performative Approach to Ritual,” in Culture, Thought and Social Action (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press), 119. Rappaport, Ritual and Religion, 26.51 Rappaport, Ritual and Religion, 31.5235behaviours, ranging from large-scale religious ceremonies down to formalized human interactions such as shaking hands, or even repetitive habitual practices such as brushing one’s teeth. This places any academic discussion that hopes to draw on the concept of ritual as a meaningful category of analysis into a difficult position, as an overly specific definition of ritual can constrain the value of the term as a meaningful cross-cultural phenomenon, while too loose of a definition can push the applicability of ritual into so broad a range of human behaviours as to be of questionable use.  One of the most well-known critiques along these lines was given by Jack Goody who argued that although there are certain common forms of human behaviour and social acts that include features of formalism and repetition, it is unclear if there is anything to be gained analytically by tying these acts together under the title of “ritual." Applying this term to any of these examples of human behaviour exposes a belief that there is “some key we can discover that will unlock this universe of social action, some common code that will reveal all to the enquiring mind,” a grandiose implication that does not necessarily arise if we use any other range of available and more neutral terms such as “ceremonies” or “public acts” to describe these same activities.  Goody further suggests that this belief may derive in part from a problematic us/them 53dichotomy that presumably has its roots in assumptions about cultural evolution that underly early theories of ritual. This dichotomy presumes a loaded “rational us” vs. “irrational them” distinction between the civilized behaviour of modern Europeans and the primitive behaviour of less advanced cultures. This can also take the form of a putative distinction between the irrational “religious” and the rational “secular,” a dichotomy commonly described as the “sacred” and the  Jack Goody, “Against ‘Ritual’: Loosely Structured Thoughts on a Loosely Defined Topic,” in Secular 53Ritual, ed. Sally F. Moore and Barbara G. Myerhoff (Assen: Van Gorcum, 1977), 28.36“profane.” For Goody, this problematic assumption makes the study of ritual immediately problematic from the outset — a term used to attempt to explain behaviour that was deemed irrational.  To take Goody’s critique seriously is to acknowledge that we cannot place every example of a human activity containing elements of formalism under the broad heading of “ritual” unless the analytic value of this term can be meaningfully described and justified. This places the onus on those who do employ the concept of ritual to justify its use. One response to this problem can be seen with the development of the cross-disciplinary field of Ritual Studies, a field of study that employs the writings and vocabulary of scholars from a range of fields, including anthropology, sociology, religious studies, cognitive science and more. The desire to draw together scholars from a wide variety of disciplines is driven by the belief that ritual crosses multiple domains of human behaviour, and that understanding its significance requires conversation among scholars from many fields. The results have so far been productive, and we can see attempts to address many of the problems that Goody points out in his critique, including novel approaches to this problem of defining ritual.  Ongoing difficulties in providing a consistent definition of ritual has less to do with ritual itself than with the categories of definition that have historically been applied to it. Early attempts to define ritual have tended to rely on an Aristotelian category, in which a list of necessary elements must be present in order for a particular example to fit within that category. In contrast, a “radial” categorization may be a better approach. These are definitions that rely on categories that have prototypical centres, a form of definition that attempts to take into account the way that humans cognitively recognize categories based on perceptually salient prototypes 37and exemplary types.  From this perspective, we can picture an ideal example of a “ritual,” with 54other examples radiating outwards from ideal prototype. Within the field of ritual studies, one example of an attempt to grapple with this problem of definitions is that of Jan A.M. Snoek. Snoek takes a similar approach to radial categories, but employs instead the terminology of polythetic and monothetic classes of definition. He blames the use of “monothetic classes” of definition for the difficulties of defining ritual. Like Aristotelian categories, these require that “each member of the class has all the characteristics defining the class as a whole” and that “each of these characteristics is possessed by all of those members”.   This monothetic approach is 55highly limited, and indeed is exactly the kind of approach to ritual that has led to the persistent problem where no clear and consistent set of required qualities can be determined that applies to all rituals. Polythetic classes, on the other hand, allow for differences between individual cases: A class is polythetic if and only if (A) each member of the class has a large but unspecified number of a set of characteristics occurring in the class as a whole, (B) each of those characteristics is possessed by a large number of those members, and (if fully polythetic) (C) no one of those characteristics is possessed by every member of the class.  56Snoek does not offer his own definition but does propose a possible approach for doing so. This approach begins with an extensive list of characteristics that can be found widely in existing literature on ritual: for example, rituals may be “marked off from the routine of everyday life,” “liminal,” “collective,” or “prescribed.” These qualities may define how most forms of ritual  See Eleanor H. Rosch, “Natural Categories, in Cognitive Psychology 4.3 (1973), George Lakoff, 54Women, Fire and Dangerous Things: What Categories Reveal about the  Mind (Chicago: University of Chicago Press. 1987), and Edward Slingerland, What Science Offers the Humanities: Integrating Body and Culture (Cambridge: University of Cambridge Press, 2008), 59.Jan A.M. Snoek, “Defining ‘Rituals,’” in Theorizing Rituals: Issues, Topics, Approaches, Concepts, ed. 55Jens Kreinath et al. (Leiden: Brill, 2008), 3-14 Snoek, “Defining ‘Rituals’”, 4-5.5638behaviour occur while still allowing for specific examples that may have certain characteristics to a greater or lesser degree, or which may lack certain specific characteristics.  Snoek also discusses how he has employed a similar approach to the difficult question of defining “religion.” A useful approach for him has been to focus first on the adjectival form of the word before attempting to define the noun, because the “scope of the adjective is wider than that of the substantive” by virtue of the fact that it describes behaviour rather than an entity.  In 57the case of ritual, this would result in a definition beginning with “ritual behaviour” before providing definitions of accompanying nouns such as a “rite”, “ritual,” or “ceremony.” Although here it is framed in grammatical terms, Snoek’s point about the benefits of focusing on ritual behaviour rather than ritual events has been at the centre of one of the more productive approaches to ritual in recent years, which will be discussed below. Ritual Practice  One of the primary insights that has come out of the field of ritual studies has involved a shift in focus away from the interpretation of individual rituals as loci of cultural “meaning,” and towards examining the concept of ritual practice as a form of behaviour. The most notable proponent of this approach is Catherine Bell, who was able to draw on the rich body of work on ritual that preceded her and to propose a comprehensive rethinking of the academic approach to ritual. Most fundamentally, her approach has focused on “ritualization,” a term used to describe the strategic construction of ritual acts.  This offers a potential way out of some persistent 58 Snoek, “Defining ‘Rituals’”, 12.57 Catherine Bell, Ritual Theory, Ritual Practice (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1992) and Ritual 58Perspectives and Dimensions (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997).39definitional problems by suggesting that the production of specific ritual acts can make use of a variety of strategic elements, but that no one specific element is required for the activity to fit the definition of a ritual act. Bell uses the term ritualization to draw attention to the way in which certain social actions strategically distinguish themselves in relation to other actions… for setting some activities off from others, for creating and privileging a qualitative distinction between the ‘sacred’ and the ‘profane,’ and for ascribing such distinctions to realities thought to transcend the powers of human actors.  59This approach also provides one way of answering Goody’s critique that ritual is applied to too broad a range of human activities. By Bell’s definition, ritualization is an act undertaken by actors within a specific cultural setting that contains its own web of values and norms, constraining and prescribing the available social options of the person in question. In other words, ritualization involves making use of available sources of cultural meanings, and the “sense” of ritual that one has by virtue of “being a socially aware person” in a specific cultural setting. Because ritualization is enacted in order to set something apart from the “ordinary” behaviour of everyday activity, we must be careful not to apply an idea of ritual that has been disconnected from the cultural setting within which it operates.  This approach allows for a framework to discuss and debate the question of which actions should be considered to constitute a ritualized act. Brushing one’s teeth, for example, by this definition should not be included as ritual simply because it is a habitual individual practice; this is because such an act does not employ strategies of ritual construction. We can, however, imagine scenarios in which the brushing of teeth could be used within a ritual production. We  Bell, Ritual Theory, 74.5940could easily imagine, for example, a special brush that had been deemed “sacred”  being used 60symbolically in a communal tooth-cleansing ceremony. In this example, we can see elements of ritualization — the sacralization of an object, the use of symbolic or metaphorical meaning, and a special ceremony that has been given elements of formality to set it apart as meaningfully distinct from an otherwise banal and routine act. This also presents an example of opaque causality, as the application of the ritual toothbrush in this communal ceremony would have purposes that transcend the ostensible end of cleansing one’s teeth.  We should not expect that participants in such a ceremony would all provide the same explanation of the meaning behind this ceremony or its historical origins, and there would also be room for disagreement among them over the precisely correct way to perform it. This point is made most forcefully by Frits Staal who has suggested that this fact can be explained by the hypothesis that ritual ultimately “has no meaning, goal or aim,” but is instead “pure activity.”  61Staal also draws from pre-existing views of ritual, perhaps most notably Rappaport whose definition of ritual also circumvented the ostensible “purpose” or pure symbolic meaning of ritual action.  In Staal’s argument, ritual acts are “useless” in the sense that their purpose is self-62 For the purposes of this example, “sacred” is being used to describe an object being set apart in some 60special sense. “Sacredness” should also be treated as a term whose definition is going to be specific to the cultural setting in which it is used. The approach used by Anne Taves is helpful in understanding ritual. She has argued that terms such as sacred, holy or numinous might be more usefully described under the broader category of “special things” or “things set apart,” Religious Experience Reconsidered: a Building Block Approach to the Study of Religion and Other Special Things (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2009), 17. For classic discussions of concepts such as the sacred, holy or numinous see Rudolf Otto, The Idea of the Holy: An Inquiry into the Non-rational Factor in the Idea of the Divine and its Relation to the Rational, trans. John W. Harvey (New York: Oxford University Press, 1958), and William James, The Varieties of Religious Experience: A Study in Human Nature (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012). Frits Staal, “The Meaninglessness of Ritual,” Numen 26.1 (1979), 8-9.61 Where Staal goes further is in his rejection of ritual’s role as even being communicative, at least in its 62origins. This is arguably in contrast to Rapport’s analysis of ritual in Pigs for the Ancestors: Ritual in the Ecology of a New Guinea People (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1967).41contained, and not oriented towards some goal or meaning “beyond” the actual ritual performance itself. There may be positive social or personal side-effects that rituals produce, such as the bonding of participants, reinforcing solidarity, or connecting with ancestors, but these side-effects cannot explain the ritual’s origin.  63 Although Staal’s argument goes too far, it is useful for highlighting some important features of ritual that distinguish it from other forms of activity. Viewing ritual activity as something possessing its own self-contained meaning within the realm of “pure activity” is a helpful way of conceptualizing the way that ritual acts are distinguished from ordinary activity. The very act of performing something in a prescribed and formal way imbues the activity with a quality that sets it apart from the ordinary and instrumental. Although the details of a formula for ritual practice may appear arbitrary to an outside observer, for a ritualized act to remain distinct from ordinary behaviour it may be necessary to retain a sense that certain prescribed rules are inflexible. As he notes, “these side-effects fail to explain the most curious fact about ritual preservation: rituals are always guarded jealously and with extreme conservatism.”  This is 64because, in Bell’s terms, it is the inflexible and historically authoritative prescription that makes the action ritualized rather than ordinary.  If we accept this view of ritual, then we can understand why it is the case that we can intuitively recognize a ritual action, and yet be unable to provide a precise and universal  Staal, “Meaninglessness,” 11. These “side-effects” are in fact central to any functionalist approach to 63ritual, such as those put forward by Émile Durkheim, Bronislaw Malinowski, or Roy Rappaport. See Émile Durkheim, Elementary Forms, trans. Carol Cosman (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2001), Malinowski, Coral Gardens Coral Gardens and their Magic: Soil-tilling and Agricultural Rites in the Trobriand Islands (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1965), and Rappaport, Ritual and Religion. This study does not proceed from a functionalist approach, but at the same time does not deny their value. Staal, “Meaninglessness”, 11.6442definition of what constitutes a ritual. The basic behaviour of constructing a ritual act is recognizable, but there is room for vast differences in how such acts can be constructed. The advantage of this perspective is that it preserves ritualization as a useful category of analysis that can answer Goody’s challenge; the disadvantage, if we want to put it this way, is that it does not allow us to detach “ritual” in the abstract from the specific instantiations of ritualized activities and the attendant complexities of history, culture and individual agency. In this way, Goody is correct that ritual does not provide a key to unlocking a universe of social action, but he is wrong to suggest that we should abandon ritual as a useful analytical term for understanding the human condition.  A similar approach to Bell has also been taken by those who pursue a cognitive study of ritual. Pascal Boyer, for example, speaks of ritual as a “behavioural modality.” To clarify what he means by this, he gives the example of dancing: we can instantly recognize examples of dance cross-culturally, but it would be unproductive to attempt a universal definition by collecting the details from a single example: In some societies dancing is collective, elsewhere it is only done in isolation; it may be thought of as pleasurable here and painful there, or maybe embarrassing or compulsory or tedious. It may be an artistic performance or a religious act or just fun. There is nothing common to all these situations except, precisely, that dancing is used in all of them. So we must distinguish two elements here, a certain behavioural modality on the one hand (the stylized usage of distorted ordinary gestures in this case), and a set of situations in which it is used in the other. We should not presume that this latter set has any common feature other than the usage of the behavioural modality in question.  65 Pascal Boyer, The Naturalness of Religious Ideas: A Cognitive Theory of Religion (Berkeley: 65University of California Press, 1994), 189.43Boyer’s perspective suggests that the rich variability of ritual-like behaviours does not imply uselessness of ritual as a category, but rather that the performance of ritual is something very basic to human cognition.  This has been further emphasized by more recent cognitive approaches to ritual, which have attempted to study the specific cognitive processes that underly and comprise ritualization. The approach from cognitive science has added an additional element to our understanding of ritual, particularly the growing evidence, as Jesper Sørensen puts it, that “human cognition is constrained to a certain extent by domain-specific categorisation.”  Cognitive approaches to 66ritualized behaviour have mainly focused on the particular ways in which specific cognitive domains act and interact to create ritualized actions. One insight from the cognitive approach is in the way that some ritualized activities appear to alter the way that ritual actors think about their actions. As Liénard and Sørensen note, “in ritual, the smooth integration of low-level actions (gripping, lifting, drinking) into a broader scenario (having coffee) is hampered.”  Boyer 67and Liénard describe this effect as “goal demotion,” in which, people’s attention is typically drawn to the details of  performance, the particular direction of  a gesture, the specific number of times an action should be performed, and so on. Conversely, the description  of ritual action in terms of goals is either not available or in any case irrelevant… Although  there may  be  a  goal  for  the  overall  ritual  script,  there  are  no obvious sub-goals for its components.  68In other words, the routinized and prescribed nature of ritualized activity and its focus on specific actions results in a “momentary overloading or ‘swamping’ of working memory, especially if the  Jesper Sørensen, “The Question of Ritual: A Cognitive Approach,” Ritualistic 18, 14.66 Pierre Liénard  and Jesper Sørensen, “Tools for Thought: The Ritual Use of Ordinary Tools,” in Origins 67of Religion, Cognition and Culture, ed. Armin W. Geertz (Durham: Acumen, 2013), 346.  Pascal Boyer and Pierre Liénard, “Why Ritualized Behavior? Precaution Systems and Action Parsing in 68Developmental, Pathological and Cultural Rituals,” in Behavioural and Brain Sciences 29 (2006), 605.44action sequences are represented at the fine-grain parsing level.”  This example should not be 69taken as an absolute explanation for the presence of ritual in human culture, but it does point to at least one example in which a cognitive approach to the apparent opaque causality of ritualized behaviours — the “meaninglessness” of it in Staal’s terminology — can explain some of the ways in which ritualized behaviour actually does affect human cognition. In this view, one of the reasons that some ritualized activities are made up of small, routinized actions that have no instrumental purpose is because this results in the brain processing these actions in a significantly different way.  A further question that the approach of ritual practice attempts to address is that of what ritualized behaviour actually “means.” Bell discusses how academic approaches to ritual have historically assumed a strict but problematic dichotomy between “thought” and “action,”  and 70Talal Asad also addresses this problem by discussing how the study of ritual in modern anthropology has long presupposed a “distinction between ‘feelings’ as private and ineffable and ‘ritual’ as public and legible.”   For both Asad and Bell, this problematic view of ritual derives 71at least in part from the analytical approach of the anthropologist for whom ritual becomes akin to a text to be interpreted. This perspective is problematic on at least two levels: first, it presents ritual as something devoid of thought, purpose or feelings; and second, it potentially falls into the trap of assuming a relationship between individuals and a reified “society” or “culture” whose  Boyer and Liénard, “Why Ritualized Behaviour?”, 605.69 Bell, Ritual Theory, argues that scholars have historically argued that ritual is, paradoxically, both an 70example of pure thoughtless action and the mechanism by which societies resolve this supposed dichotomy. For Bell, this means that past theories of ritual have tended to use this concept to solve a problem that only exists because of the way that academics initially framed their questions about ritual. Asad, “Genealogy,” 72.7145beliefs and collective actions can be understood through the interpretive lens of ritual’s symbolic actions.  A number of recent attempts to resolve these problems with ritual theory have turned to the body as a locus of the performance of ritual and its meaning.  One example is Talal Asad 72who discussed how the performance of ritual acts by medieval monastics was intended to inculcate religious virtues, and so was clearly not “empty” action devoid of thought or feelings. He wonders why the early work of Marcel Mauss and his Techniques of the Body was not more influential on the study of ritual, as it presents a rare early example of a theorist of ritual treating the body seriously as the source of ritual’s purpose and meaning. According to Asad, this failure to address the body more fully in early instantiations of ritual theory was unfortunate. As he notes: According to Mauss, the human body was not to be viewed simply as the passive recipient of “cultural imprints,” still less as the active source of “natural expressions” that are “clothed in local history and culture,” as though it were a matter of a inner character expressed in a readable sign, so that the latter could be used as a means of deciphering the former. It was to be viewed as the developable means for achieving a range of human objectives, from styles of physical movement (e.g. walking), through modes of emotional being (e.g. composure), to kinds of spiritual experience (e.g., mystical states). This way of talking seems to avoid the Cartesian dualism of the mind and objects of the mind’s perception.  73From this perspective, the apparent “meaninglessness” of ritual practices derives from the mistaken conviction that all ritual acts should be interpretable on a symbolic level, and even  See Bell, Ritual Theory, 94-117 for a useful review of the theoretical literature on ritual and the body.72 Asad, Genealogy,” 76.7346more problematically that “thought” and “action” are fundamentally distinct. Turning to the body allows us to reintegrate action and meaning by not treating thought as disembodied.  74 Another useful approach for resolving this problem while also addressing the place of social values and meanings is Pierre Bourdieu’s concept of habitus,  which he defines as 75systems of durable, transposable dispositions, structured structures predisposed to function as structuring structures, that is, as principles which generate and organize practices and representations that can be objectively adapted to their outcomes without presupposing a conscious aiming at ends or an express mastery of the operations necessary in order to attain them.  76Put more simply, habitus is intended to help conceptualize the complex dialectical relationship between culture and the individual. This is helpful for avoiding the dangers of reifying society as a monolith with which individuals interact via ritual, and also of viewing ritual as “thoughtless” action. The norms and beliefs of society do not, in the strictest sense, exist in concrete terms “out there” in the world, but are inculcated within individuals through their lived experience within a society. The dispositions of habitus take the form of “schemes of perception, thought and action” that derive from one’s experience in a social and cultural setting, but are at their most powerful when they are unconscious and informal.  77 This kind of Cartesian duality has been further attacked by proponents of the concept of embodied 74cognition or the “embodied mind”. See George Lakoff and Mark Johnson, Philosophy in the Flesh: The Embodied Mind and its Challenge to Western Thought, (New York: Basic Books, 1999), and Mark Johnson, The Meaning of the Body: Aesthetics of Human Understanding (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2007). As Asad notes, Bourdieu appears to owe an intellectual debt to Marcel Mauss in his use of the concept 75of habitus, “Genealogy,” 75 n20. Pierre Bourdieu, The Logic of Practice, trans. Richard Nice (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 761980), 53. Bourdieu, Logic of Practice, 54.7747The body is an important locus for this meaning, and Bourdieu argues ritualized acts function through the hidden persuasion of an implicit pedagogy which can instil a whole cosmology, through injunctions as insignificant as ‘sit up straight’ or ‘don’t hold your knife in your left hand’, and inscribe the most fundamental principles of the arbitrary content of a culture in seemingly innocuous details of bearing or physical and verbal manners, so putting them beyond the reach of consciousness and explicit statement…. The cunning of pedagogical reason lies precisely in the fact that it manages to extort what is essential while seeming to demand the insignificant.  78 This perspective overlaps in significant ways with the more recent premise of the embodied mind, which argues that insights from cognitive science force us to acknowledge that thought cannot be meaningfully separated from the body, and that there is no category of “pure” reason that can be separated from the emotions.  In terms similar to this, Bourdieu speaks of the 79role of the body in shaping our inner dispositions, and the ways in which ritual enactments can have affective qualities. As he puts it, the body “believes in what it plays at: it weeps if it mimes grief… What is ‘learned by the body’ is not something that one has, like knowledge that can be brandished, but something that one is.”  Approaching culture from a Marxist perspective, 80Bourdieu focuses on the ways this “cunning of pedagogical reason” is employed within power structures. In contrast, both Bell and Asad argue that ritual can also have a “redemptive” role, and can be employed by people to achieve their own social or religious ends as well even if these ends are, admittedly, shaped by each person’s habitus.  Theories that view ritual as “thoughtless” or simply symbolic references to the more meaningful components of religion such as “myth” or “belief” fail to acknowledge the forms of  Bourdieu, Logic of Practice, 69.78 Lakoff and Johnson, Philosophy In the Flesh.79 Bourdieu, Logic of Practice, 73.8048embodied meaning and the affective consequences of ritual actions. The body’s role as a locus of meaning in ritual action helps avoid the problem of contrasting “thought” and “action” by demonstrating that the two cannot be separated meaningfully. Put another way, ritual acts do something and are not merely symbolic of something more meaningful. This also helps us to better understand what Bell means when she speaks of ritualization as a strategic act.  Taken together, this study presents an approach to ritual that views  “ritualization” as a basic and pervasive element of human behaviour across cultures. As a working definition, it is suggested that ritualization involves the deployment of strategies to distinguish the ritual act from ordinary behaviour. This performance of distinct acts can be applied to a wide range of otherwise ordinary behaviours, which complicates our picture considerably. The distinction of ritual from ordinary behaviour can take a variety of forms, distinguishing the “sacred” from the “profane,” or imbuing actions with other forms of socially contextualized meaning. This helps account for the many forms that ritual can take, and the many apparent “purposes” for which it can be employed, including rites of passage, ceremonies with specific religious intentions, or ritualized activities that convey or inculcate social norms. Finally, this study presumes that the body is a primary locus of the meaning of ritual actions, and that the “power” of ritual acts is therefore expressed in ways that assume an embodied mind, and that the performance of ritual acts can have affective qualities that can influence people’s interior psychological states. This is a view that is being gradually supported by findings from cognitive science, which have so far pointed to the ways ritualization may exploit the domain-specific categorization of the human cognition. 49Ritual Propriety  With this working definition of ritual in place, it is now possible to consider the semantic range and implications of the early Chinese concept of li 禮. Ritualized behaviour can be manifested in a variety of ways, and the “ritual sense” that allows for the strategic construction of ritual acts is based on inculcated and historically specific cultural values and norms. The purpose of this section is to consider the historical and social context within which the theorization of li took place. A close reading of these primary sources reveals that there are some specific senses in which li is discussed: (1) it can refer broadly to social mores, a meaning with implications for how political thinkers in particular were conceptualizing their idea of public order; (2) it can refer to courtesy and etiquette, which has implications for how political thinkers were concerned about problems of interpersonal dynamics at court; and (3) it can refer to the social expectations and hierarchical structure that define the perceived civilization of the Yellow River Valley region, with implications for how political thinkers understood ritual to be a necessary feature of a complex society. Each of these senses in which li is discussed suggests a different set of stakes for the Confucian writers who would present their theory of ritual psychology in the Guodian texts. When these Warring States writers require concrete examples of li in action, they tend to describe performances of embodied ritualized conduct that fits neatly within the working definition of ritual provided above, a point that will be considered briefly in the concluding section of this chapter.   50Mores and Public Order  One of the most prevalent senses in which li was discussed in Warring States texts was as a term referring to the general social mores of polite society. Although the Confucians are noted for their particular emphasis on li, this was a concept with meaning and relevance that extended well beyond their own ideological circle. Ritual propriety involved the correct adherence to a set of widely understood and largely accepted social values, violations of which would have been seen as problematic by a wide cross-section of people. Specific expectations may have differed across class and gender, while some central ethical concepts such as filial piety (xiao 孝) would have been considered important for virtually every member of society. This represented a normative discourse within which there would be room for disagreements and interpretation, but which would have employed a shared vocabulary of normative assumptions and concepts.  This can be seen clearly in two debates over the importance of li from the Mengzi text, which presents the thought of mid-Warring States thinker Mencius (Mengzi 孟⼦子). By looking at these debates, it will be possible to gain a clearer picture of how li conveyed a meaning that was shared by both Confucians and their critics, even if the Confucians were sometimes portrayed as being too pedantically concerned with these rules of polite personal conduct. The first example is Mencius’s putative debate with Chunyu Kun 淳于髡. Little is known about this figure, but he appears to have been an important figure at the Jixia Academy and may have held an important office in the state of Qi.  81淳于髡曰:「男女授受不親,禮與︖?」  These assertions are based on the accounts in Shiji, where Chunyu Kun appears in the biographies of 81Mengzi and Xunzi, and elsewhere. Masayuki Sato discusses Chunyu Kun and his relationship with Xunzi and the Jixia academy. Sato, Confucian Quest for Order.51孟⼦子曰:「禮也。︒」 曰:「嫂溺則援之以⼿手乎︖?」 曰:「嫂溺不援,是豺狼也。︒男女授受不親,禮也︔;嫂溺援之以⼿手者,權也。︒」 曰:「今天下溺矣,夫⼦子之不援,何也︖?」 曰:「天下溺,援之以道︔;嫂溺,援之以⼿手。︒⼦子欲⼿手援天下乎︖?」 Chunyu Kun said, “Is it the rule of ritual propriety that a man and a woman should not touch hands when giving and receiving items?”  Mencius replied, “That is correct, according to ritual propriety.” Chunyu Kun asked, ‘So, if a man's sister-in-law were drowning, should he not offer his hand to save her?” Mencius said, ‘To not rescue one’s sister-in-law from drowning would be the behaviour of a wolf. It is the rule of ritual propriety that a man and a woman should not touch; however, to offer your hand to a drowning sister-in-law is a case of weighing the particular situation. Chunyu Kun said, ‘Now, All-Under-Heaven is drowning. How can it be that you will not reach out to save it?’ Mencius answered, ‘When All-Under-Heaven is drowning, one must offer up the Way to save it; when a sister-in-law is drowning, one must offer up their hand. Sir, do you wish me to save All-Under-Heaven with my hand?”  82The criticism against Mencius here appears to be based on two points. Perhaps most importantly,  is the supposed Confucian tendency to avoid getting their hands dirty with the pragmatic responsibilities of holding political office, due to concerns with the ethical propriety of the ruler.  The second level of criticism appears to be a favourite target for critics of Confucianism, 83as Mencius’ attention to the rules of ritual properiety are portrayed as comically pedantic. Mencius’ response is based on the issue of “weighing” (quan 權)  a particular situation when 84choosing a moral course of action. For Mencius, the analogy does not work because neither the crisis nor the capacity to solve it are on the same scale. From Chunyu’s perspective, the scale of  Translation, with emendations, from Bryan W. Van Norden, Mengzi: With Selections from Traditional 82Commentaries (Indianapolis: Hackett, 2008) 97-98. In Book 6 of the Mengzi, Chunyu Kun once again criticizes Mencius’ refusal to take part in the running 83of the state. For a discussion of quan 權, see Griet Vankeergberghen, "Choosing Balance: Weighing ("quan" 權) as 84a metaphor for action in early Chinese texts, Early China 30 (2005-2006).52the analogy does hold, and his criticism is directed towards the suggestion that the political crisis of the Warring States period is going to be resolved through the performance of the rules of polite behaviour. For the purposes of our discussion, however, the point to be noted here is regarding tho concrete example that Chunyu Kun provides in his attempt to get at the issue of ritual propriety. When he grasps for an example of li to highlight, he turns to the rule of men and women not touching.  With this in mind, we should examine a second example from the Mengzi, the putative debate between Mencius’ disciple Wu Luzi 屋廬⼦子 and an anonymous critic:  任⼈人有問屋廬⼦子曰:「禮與食孰重︖?」 曰:「禮重。︒」 曰:「⾊色與禮孰重︖?」 曰:「禮重。︒」 曰:「以禮食,則飢⽽而死︔;不以禮食,則得食,必以禮乎︖?親迎,則不得妻︔;不親迎,則得妻,必親迎乎!」  屋廬⼦子不能對,明⽇日之鄒以告孟⼦子。︒孟⼦子曰:「於答是也何有︖?不揣其本⽽而齊其末,⽅方⼨寸之⽊木可使⾼高於岑樓。︒⾦金重於⽻羽者,豈謂⼀一鉤⾦金與⼀一輿⽻羽之謂哉︖?取食之重者,與禮之輕者⽽而比之,奚翅食重︖?取⾊色之重者,與禮之輕者⽽而比之,奚翅⾊色重︖?往應之曰:『紾兄之臂⽽而奪之食,則得食︔;不紾,則不得食,則將紾之乎︖?踰東家牆⽽而摟其處⼦子,則得妻︔;不摟,則不得妻,則將摟之乎︖?』」 A man of Ren asked the disciple Wu Luzi, “Between ritual propriety and eating, which should be given greater weight?” Mengzi replied, “Ritual propriety.” The man said, “Between sex and ritual propriety, which should be given greater weight?” Mengzi replied, “Ritual propriety.” The man said, “So, if by obeying the rules propriety when eating should result in one starving to death, but disobeying the rules of propriety in eating would result in getting food must one still adhere to ritual propriety?  And if one adheres to the rule of welcoming one’s wife in person, he will not be able to find a wife, but if by not adhering to this rule he shall find a wife, must he still adhere to this rule?” The disciple was unable to find a response to these questions, and the next day he went to Zou to tell this to Mengzi. Mengzi said to him, “Where is the difficulty in answering this question?  If you do not line them up at their base, but instead only hold them level at the top, a piece of wood only one inch square in size can be measured to the same height as the peak of a tall 53building. Gold is heavier than feathers, but does this apply to a comparison between a small hook made of gold and a carriage filled with feathers? Why would you use as a single case of comparison an instance where eating is of greater weight than ritual propriety and stop there?  Why would you use as a single case of comparison an instance where sex is of greater weight than ritual propriety and stop there? Go and respond to him by saying, “If by twisting your elder brother’s arm and taking his food you can get food, while by not twisting his arm you cannot, then shall one go ahead and twist his arm?  If by climbing over the wall of your neighbour’s home and dragging away his virgin daughter you can get a wife, but by not dragging away his daughter you may not, shall one go ahead and drag her away?”  85This interaction is similar to the first, once again coming down to the question of measuring situations to determine the correct response, and also targeting Confucian pedantry. In this case, the rules of propriety are being contrasted with food and sex (shise 食⾊色), a common metonymic pair for the basic needs for life. What appears to be at stake in this passage is the putative power of ritual propriety as a panacea for the social ills of the time. Wu Luzi is forced by his opponent to acknowledge that there are more immediate biological concerns than the rules of interpersonal conduct, and the result is to make such rules appear pedantic and of secondary concern. Mencius is forced to point out that the rules ritual propriety exist contextually and are enacted with discretion. The rules of ritual propriety should not be seen as preventing people from pursuing their basic biological needs, but rather as a means of regulating the competing needs of people in a society in which conflict can potentially arise in pursuit of these needs. In this case, when the anonymous critic seeks a concrete example to describe ritual propriety, he turns first to the polite rules of refusing food, and then to the ceremonial rule for greeting a new wife. In Mencius’ response, he turns to respect for an elder brother.  These examples help us to trace the contours of li’s meaning within Warring States thought, and the different ways that the idea of ritual propriety could be employed and  Adapted from Van Norden, Mengzi, 158-9.8554emphasized. The common point of agreement here seems to be that ritual propriety shapes the expectations of behaviour and interactions. Common points of reference are the separation of the sexes, the relationships between elders and youths. The strictures about the greeting ceremonies for a wedding are also a reference that we can find again elsewhere when criticizing the Confucians, suggesting this may have been a common concern for these thinkers,  as are 86discussions of burial and mourning practices, as will be discussed in the following chapter. The basic virtues emphasized by Confucian writers were rarely directly condemned by critics, and many attacks on these ideas would focus on a question of means and ends, as seen in Chunyu Kun’s pragmatic critique of Mengzi. This is seen, for example, in the “Schemes” chapter (Huace 畫策) of the Book of Lord Shang (Shangjun shu 商君書), where these moral virtues of a morally right (yi 義) order are treated as positive goals, but the legal reforms entailed by reference to “standards” or “laws” (fa 法) are put forward as the only means for achieving these ethical ideals: 聖⼈人有必信之性,又有使天下不得不信之法。︒所謂義者,為⼈人臣忠,為⼈人⼦子孝,少長有禮,男女有別.... 此乃有法之常也。︒聖王者,不貴義⽽而貴法︔;法必明,令必⾏行,則已矣。︒ A sage has a nature that cannot help but be trustworthy (xin 信), but he also has a method (fa 法) by which he compels All-Under-Heaven to not fail to be trustworthy. That which is called right (yi 義) is where ministers are loyal and sons are filial, where there is ritual propriety (li 禮) between youth and elders, and separation between men and women…. All of this is (simply) the constant state of affairs when there are standards (fa 法) in place. The sage does not value rightness, he values standards. The standards must be clear, and directives must be put into practice, and that is enough.  87 This is targeted in the “Against the Confucians” (Fei Ru 非儒) chapter of the Mozi.86 Book of Lord Shang, “Schemes” (Huace 畫策).8755Here, li is explicitly used to describe a basic sense of proper and ideal behaviour. The “propriety between younger and elder” (shao zhang you li 少長有禮) is used alongside other examples of proper conduct that specify the appropriate relationships between different spheres of social life, including the “separation between men and women” (nan nü you bie 男女有別).  In the Mozi text we can see a similar tendency. For example, in the “Eschewing Faults” chapter (Ci guo 辭過), the following is said regarding the utility of building homes and palaces: ⼦子墨⼦子曰:古之民,未知為宮室時,就陵⾩阜⽽而居,穴⽽而處,下潤濕傷民,故聖王作為宮室。︒為宮室之法,曰:(室)⾼高⾜足以辟潤濕,邊⾜足以圉風寒,上⾜足以待雪霜⾬雨露,宮牆之⾼高,⾜足以別男女之禮,謹此則⽌止。︒ Our Master Mozi said: The people in antiquity, in the time before they knew how to build palaces and houses, arrived at hills and mounds and lived there, and came to caves and resided there. The dampness of these lowly places made the people sick, and so the sage kings built palaces and homes. In establishing the standard for these palaces and homes, they declared: the height should be enough to avoid the moisture and dampness, the walls sufficient to keep out the winds and cold, the roof sufficient to hold back the snow, frost, rain and dew; the height of the palace walls should be sufficient to maintain the propriety (li 禮) of the separation of men and women. They took care to maintain these (principles) and go no further.  88Here, of course, the rhetorical point being made by the Mohists is regarding their principle of utility, and they are arguing that there is no need for lavish expenditures in construction so long as these basic needs are met. Notably, however, one of the necessities listed is that the palace walls should be built high enough to ensure the ritual propriety of the separation of the sexes. A similar view is also presented in Part II of “Exalting Worthiness” (Shang xian zhong 尚賢中), where the Mozi text also offers the following description of the behaviour that runs rampant when the behaviour of people of quality is not encouraged:  Mozi, “Eschewing Faults” (Ci guo 辭過).8856則賞亦必不當賢,⽽而罰亦必不當暴。︒若苟賞不當賢⽽而罰不當暴,則是為賢者不勸⽽而為暴者不沮矣。︒是以入則不慈孝⽗父母,出則不長弟鄉⾥里,居處無節,出入無度,男女無別。︒使治官府則盜竊,守城則倍畔。︒ If rewards are not appropriate to worthiness, and punishments are not appropriate to wickedness then those who are worthy will not be encouraged, and those who are wicked will not be stopped. If this is so, at home there will not be kindness and filial behaviour towards parents, and abroad there will not be proper regard for those who are older and younger in districts and villages. At home, there will not be moderation, and abroad there will not be restraint. Nor will there be the proper distinction between men and women. Those who are put in charge of the official treasury will plunder and steal from it, and those who are charged with defending the city will betray and forsake it.  89The signs of corruption in society are framed in terms that would normally be considered “Confucian:” a lack of filial respect for parents, a lack of the respect for elders, and men and women going about and interacting as they please. This specific sense of li as a positive description of how people interact in an orderly society could probably best be translated as “mores”, a term which in English conveys the basic customs, conventions or morals within a specific community. In these usages, the term is not being used as part of a larger political theory, is not tied to ideas of the Western Zhou political system, and is not a point of debate. Simply put: in an ideal world, people would adhere to these basic mores in their daily lives.  There are deeper implications, however, to this particular view of propriety, related to the issue of public order. Often boiling down to issues of the separation of men and women, or the distinctions between youth and elders, this sense of public order is a pervasive concern that can be seen in the above passages from the Mozi as well as in some of the political theory chapters of the Guanzi compilation, where the distinction between men and women is also provided as a  Translation from Johnston, The Mozi: A Complete Translation (New York: Columbia University Press, 892010), 69.57clear indicator of social disorder.   Han Fei speaks of this in terms of court intrigue and 90strategies of political authority in his chapter, “Decline and Ruin,” in which he gives a list of indicators of problems of authority and statecraft that are indicative of possible ruin: 后妻淫亂,主母畜穢,外內混通,男女無別,是謂兩主,兩主者,可亡也。︒ If the second wife is wanton and disorderly, the ruler’s mother is fawning and licentious, those of the inner and outer chambers mix, and there is no separation between men and women, then this is called having divided rulership. If the state has divided rulership, then ruin is possible.  91Here, the line “no separation between men and women” (nan nü wu bie 男女無別) speaks more broadly of a lack of clarity in the roles of men and women, but presumably also refers very directly to a lack of propriety in physical and sexual contact. This concept of public and social order is tied together with presumptions about gender roles and sexual propriety.  What these discussions show is that one of the main senses in which li was employed was in discussions of social mores, a basic concept of interpersonal propriety with implications for how gender roles and generational relationships were understood, performed and regulated. This concept of social mores also had strong implications for how concepts of public order were conceptualized. This fact will become important in Chapter Three of this study where political theories about social regulation and control are discussed. Because these mores were performed, evoked and enacted through specific ritualized acts and prohibitions, this also has implications for how we understand the role of ritualization in discussions of public order. This fact creates a setting in which it could be meaningfully asserted that ritual psychology is a major concern when discussing the maintenance of public order, with ritual as a tool for doing so.  These examples from the Guanzi will be discussed in greater detail in Chapter Three of this study.90 Han Feizi, “Decline and Ruin.”9158Courtesy and Etiquette  As noted above, discussions of mores and public order often make use of the term li to describe a particular form of propriety, whether it is the li of the separation of the sexes or the li of the relationship between elder and youth. There is another sense of the term, though, that is largely specific to life at court. In these discussions, acts of courtesy and deference represent the proper medium of polite expression and interaction, and they structure the hierarchical dynamics of court actors. On this level, this concern has strong administrative and diplomatic implications, because the violation of these acts could have dire consequences, and because proper adherence to them could also, in some thinkers’ eyes, maintain the smooth operation of the state apparatus. This is done by ensuring the correct emotions and virtues between hierarchical relationships such as rulers and ministers, and between relatively equal relationships such as between state leaders or between bureaucrats. This is no small matter; discussions over court etiquette could carry a strong sense of danger, because navigating the ambiguous and vague interpersonal dynamics at court could result in career advancement or ruin, or could even cost a person their life.  In the “Relying on Rulers” (Shi jun 恃君) chapter of the Annals of Lü Buwei (Lüshi Chunqiu 呂氏春秋), we can see one example of this distinction between public order and court life. This chapter opens with the text’s version of the origins of political rulership by giving its account of a world before hierarchies developed: 昔太古嘗無君矣,其民聚⽣生群處,知母不知⽗父,無親戚兄弟夫妻男女之別,無上下長幼之道,無進退揖讓之禮,無衣服履帶宮室畜積之便,無器械⾈舟⾞車城郭險阻之備,此無君之患。︒故君臣之義,不可不明也。︒ 59Long ago, in great antiquity, there were no rulers, but people lived together in societies. They knew their mothers but not their fathers. There were no distinctions made between close and distant relatives, older and younger brothers, husbands and wives, or men and women; no Dao for interacting between superiors and inferiors or elders and youth; no ritual propriety (li 禮) governing advancing and withdrawing or bowing and yielding; nor any such conveniences as clothing, shoes, belts, houses, and storehouses; nor any such facilities as tools and utensils, boats and carts, inner and outer city walls, or border fortifications. This is the calamity that exists in a world without rulers. Accordingly, we cannot but make clear the moral principles (yi 義) that govern the relations between ruler and minister.  92This passage shows a similar conceptualization of public order as the examples above, defined by the relations between clan and family, the establishment of clear gender roles and the interaction between superiors and subordinates and elders and youth. Ritual propriety, however, appears in direct reference not to the rules of social and public order but to a set of ritualized and prescriptive actions, particularly those that define acts of respect and submission: advancing and withdrawing (jintui 進退), bowing with hands clasped (yi 揖), and “yielding,” or acts of polite refusal and deference (rang 讓). These are the rules of conduct specific to life at court and between court elites, and they speak to a second meaning of li that might best be called “courtesy”, a term that in English still conveys its etymological relationship to “court,” and implies rules of polite and refined conduct.  While in this passage the Annals of Lü Buwei is explicit about the precise ritual acts of courtesy under discussion, other Warring States texts do not always clarify the precise actions and rules that constitute this court etiquette. Perhaps in part because of this ambiguity, discussions of courtesy can convey a sense of danger, because violating them can have dire consequences. This is the primary point that the Warring States political theorist Han Fei makes  Translation, with emendations, from John Knoblock and Jeffrey Riegel, The Annals of Lü Buwei: A 92Complete Translation and Study (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2000), 511.60when he discusses the importance of li, a concept that in his pragmatic political theory does not carry much normative weight, but is established as a simple fact of life at court. Especially when portrayed by Han Fei, the rules of li serve as the ubiquitous social expectations that must be carefully navigated in the world of politics and diplomacy. The Han Feizi gives examples of where courtesy is an important quality that people must be aware of. In his “Ten Faults” chapter, he provides warnings of the negative pragmatic consequences of a failure to be courteous: 三曰、︑⾏行僻⾃自⽤用,無禮諸侯,則亡身之至也。︒ The third (fault) is to enact personal biases and follow your own (counsel), and to behave discourteously before the regional lords; this is how one comes to personal ruin.  93⼗〸十曰、︑國⼩小無禮,不⽤用諫臣,則絕世之勢也。︒ The tenth (fault) is having a small state but behaving without courtesy, and neglecting remonstrating ministers; this is the condition for the extermination of one’s posterity.  94His third example of a fault, the failure of an individual to be courteous before the feudal lords is the very height of self-destruction. In the tenth fault, the failure of a small state to be courteous in diplomatic relations will result in the extermination of one’s lineage. Fault ten will be raised once more in Chapter Two of this study, but for now we will look at fault three, upon which Han Fei elaborates with the following historical account: 奚謂⾏行僻︖?昔者楚靈王為申之會,宋太⼦子後至,執⽽而囚之,狎徐君,拘齊慶封。︒中射⼠士諫曰:「合諸侯不可無禮,此存亡之機也。︒昔者桀為有戎之會,⽽而有緡叛之︔;紂為黎丘之蒐,⽽而戎、︑狄叛之︔;由無禮也。︒君其圖之。︒」君不聽,遂⾏行其意。︒居未期年,靈王南遊,群臣從⽽而劫之,靈王餓⽽而死乾溪之上。︒故曰:⾏行僻⾃自⽤用,無禮諸侯,則亡身之至也。︒ What is meant by “enacting personal biases”?  Han Feizi, “Ten Faults.”93 Han Feizi, “Ten Faults.”9461 In the past, King Ling of Chu held a conference at Shen. The crown prince of Song was late in arriving, and so he was seized and imprisoned; he also slighted the ruler of Xu and detained Qing Feng of Qi.  One of his officiants remonstrated with him, saying “When bringing together the regional lords, you must not act with such lack of courtesy (wuli 無禮) — this is a situation on which life or death is decided. In ancient times, (the tyrant) Jie held a conference at You Rong, and the You Min revolted against him; (the tyrant) Zhou held a gathering at the Li Hills, and the Rong and Di revolted against him. In both these cases, this was due to a lack of courtesy. I ask that my lord reconsider.”  But his lord did not heed this counsel, and (continued to) follow his own whims. Before ten years had passed, King Ling was touring the south and his ministers took advantage of this situation to seize control. (Defeated at) Ganxi, King Ling would be reduced to a death by starvation. And so it is said: to enact personal biases and follow your own (counsel), and to behave discourteously before the regional lords — this is how one comes to ruin.  95Other examples in Han Feizi convey similar warnings: 國⼩小⽽而不處卑,⼒力少⽽而不畏強,無禮⽽而侮⼤大鄰,貪愎⽽而拙交者,可亡也。︒ If his state is small and yet he do not act humbly; if his (military) strength is meagre but he will not respect strong enemies; if he is discourteous (wuli 無禮) and yet insults (wu 侮) his large neighbours; if he is greedy and stubborn and yet is lacking in diplomatic ability, then ruin is possible.  96簡侮⼤大臣,無禮⽗父兄,勞苦百姓,殺戮不辜者,可亡也。︒ If he slights and insults the great ministers and is not courteous (wuli 無禮) to his father and elder brother, if he overworks the common people and slaughters the innocent, then ruin his possible.  97 In the Annals of Lü Buwei, li also takes the form of courtesy, but the text displays a different set of anxieties from Han Fei. In both of these cases, the concept of courtesy is employed with an accompanying sense of danger, because violations of the rules of courtesy can fracture interpersonal relationships. For Han Fei, this is particularly dangerous in the context of court and international diplomacy, and particularly so for the weaker party in an asymmetrical  Han Feizi, “Ten Faults.”95 Han Feizi, “Ten Faults.”96 Han Feizi, “Ten Faults.”9762power dynamic who must always be wary of antagonizing the powerful. In the Annals of Lü Buwei, courtesy is also of importance in situations of unequal power, but the text’s authors are attempting to strategically use concepts of courtesy to rearrange the power dynamic at court. In this case, it is suggested that antagonizing experts and wise advisers will result in a ruler being left with no useful advice for ruling his state.  98 Historical examples also serve to demonstrate the importance of li in the Annals of Lü Buwei, both in terms of pragmatic consequences but also in the form of supernatural interference. An example of Heaven itself responding to courtesy is that of King Wen of Zhou. When he falls ill and omens begin to indicate Heaven’s displeasure, he asks for advice on how to correct the situation. Given advice that he must employ the people to enlarge city walls, he rejects this and states that Heaven punishes one for guilt of some crime, and that he must therefore be guilty of some such offence. He therefore reforms his conduct rather than attempting to pursue more construction projects: ⽂文王曰:「昌也請改⾏行重善以移之,其可以免乎。︒」於是謹其禮秩⽪皮⾰革,以交諸侯︔;飭其辭令,幣帛,以禮豪⼠士︔;頒其爵列等級⽥田疇,以賞群臣。︒無幾何,疾乃⽌止。︒⽂文王即位八年⽽而地動,已動之後四⼗〸十三年,凡⽂文王⽴立國五⼗〸十⼀一年⽽而終,此⽂文王之所以⽌止殃翦妖也。︒ King Wen replied, “I, Chang, am requested to alter my conduct and multiply my good deeds in order to avert it." After this, paying careful attention to ritual precedence, he presented the feudal lords with gifts of skins and furs as tokens of friendship. Observing utter refinement in his formulations and commands, he increased the gifts of jade insignia and silk to be presented to his most eminent scholar-knights in accord with protocol. Promulgating his various titles and the distinctions among the various ranks, he had fields measured out as rewards for those with meritorious accomplishments. When he and his ministers had done this, it was not long before the king’s illness was cured.  For a discussion of attempts by shi bureaucrats to assert their power in the Warring States, see Pines, 98Everlasting Empire, 76-103.63When King Wen had been on the throne for eight years the earth quaked; after this happened, he ruled for another 43 years. King Wen had ruled his state a total of 51 years when he died. This is how King Wen halted further calamity and drove off inauspicious signs.  99The audience intended for this text were the ruling lineage of the Qin state and the point is clear: that Heaven itself will be displeased if one does not treat his court with courtesy, and that this displeasure will not be appeased through more labour projects. In this viewpoint, the rules of li are the direct concern of Heaven, and so cannot be understood as contingent social practices. The text is even more obvious at points, as seen here in the “Carefully Listening” (Jin ting 謹聽) chapter: 諸眾齊民,不待知⽽而使,不待禮⽽而令。︒若夫有道之⼠士,必禮必知,然後其智能可盡。︒ Now, a ruler can use the masses of undistinguished commoners without appreciating their individual worth, and he can order them about without observing ritual courtesies (li 禮). But with scholar-knights (shi ⼠士) who possess the Dao, a ruler certainly must observe ritual courtesy and appreciate their worth, for only then will he obtain the full benefits of their knowledge and abilities.  100Or here again in a chapter titled “Lowering oneself before the worthy” (Xia xian 下賢): 賢主則不然,⼠士雖驕之,⽽而⼰己愈禮之,⼠士安得不歸之︖? Worthy rulers are not like this. Even when scholar-knights are arrogant towards them, such rulers respond by treating them with even greater courtesy (yu li zhi 愈禮之); how could the scholar-knights fail to turn to them in such a case?  101 In the context of courtesy under discussion in both the Han Feizi and Annals of Lü Buwei texts, the underlying issue of personal emotions and interpersonal dynamics is the issue of primary importance, outweighing any interest in the specific rules and prescriptions of how to  Translation from Knoblock and Riegel, Annals of Lü Buwei, 164-5.99 Translation from Knoblock and Riegel, Annals of Lü Buwei, 294. 100 Translation, with emendations, from Knoblock and Riegel, Annals of Lü Buwei, 347.10164master the performance of courtesy. At the same time, discussions of li continue to imply the specific ritualized actions that enact the complex of values and norms contained in li. In the “Regretting Mistakes” (Hui guo 悔過) chapter of the Annals of Lü Buwei, one example is given of a violation of li that comes down to specific actions: 夫秦非他,周室之建國也。︒過天⼦子之城,宜橐甲束兵,左右皆下,以為天⼦子禮。︒今袀服回建,左不軾,⽽而右之超乘者五百乘,⼒力則多矣,然⽽而寡禮,安得無疵︖? Now, Qin is unlike other states in that the house of Zhou established it. When passing by the city of the Son of Heaven, its soldiers ought to wrap up their armor and sheathe their weapons. The left and right armored chariot guards should dismount out of courtesy to the Son of Heaven. Now, the entire army is all dressed in the same uniforms and the proper order of positions in the chariots has been reversed. The soldiers in the chariots on the left do not bow down and touch the crossbars, and those accompanying the chariots on the right indecorously leap into the five hundred chariots. Their physical strength is certainly great, but such display diminishes ritual propriety (li 禮). How could this army not suffer disaster?  102Here, the conduct of li indicates the moral quality of the state itself, and is employed here to suggest that even military success can be predicted by observing the normative conduct of the state’s populace. In this case, the violation of li is particularly startling, as the actions of Qin indicate a failure to acknowledge their relationship with the Zhou king. Although it is not made clear in this passage, it may be implicitly stating that Heaven may directly intervene in their fortunes.  103 Although discussions tend to refer to li without showing any concern with specific actions, when attempting to provide specific examples of li we do find that texts turn to particular dynamics (between sexes, age groups or court hierarchies) or else the particular  Translation from Knoblock and Riegel, Annals of Lü Buwei, 387.102 As Ralph D. Sawyer notes, prognostication was a basic feature of military campaigns, and so failure 103could certainly be determined by supernatural forces or agents, “Martial Prognostication,” in Military Culture in Early Imperial China, ed. Nicola Di Cosmo (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 2011).65embodied actions that convey these relationships, such as the practices of deference described in the Annals of Lü Buwei. Ritual practice is how these relationships and the larger field of meaning within which these relationships operate are actually performed and given real action in the world. These discussions place li at the very heart of the political world, and this provides a second setting in which Confucian assertions about the importance of li would have resonated among political thinkers and statesmen in the Warring States period. Transgressing the Norms  Finally, there is a third set of implications for li. For thinkers who viewed civilization itself as a negative, the normative strictures and hierarchical structure of the entire social and political complex of the Three Dynasties was unnatural and oppressive. There was not likely one single intellectual movement that formed in opposition to the perceived oppressive structure of the complex political state, but a range of particular tendencies that arose, emphasizing individualist and primitivist tendencies.  The individualist view is best represented by the ideas 104of Yang Zhu who appears to have argued that one’s own Heaven-endowed nature took priority over the unnatural and external structure of the state or the moral assertions of those who would defend the enterprises of the state. Primitivist arguments focused on the negative consequences that derive from the cunning and artful inventions of scholars and sages and could take utopian  These terms are from A.C. Graham. See Disputers of the Tao (La Salle, Illinois: Open Court, 1989), 104“The Background of the Mencian Theory of Human Nature,” in Essays on the Moral Philosophy of Mengzi, ed. Xiusheng Liu and Philip J. Ivanhoe (Indianapolis: Hackett, 2002), and “The ‘Nung-chia’ 農家 ‘School of the Tillers’ and the Origins of Peasant Utopianism in China. Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, 42.1.66form in a vision of a simple agrarian society of dispersed villages.  Most famously, this vision 105is presented in the Laozi text, and both individualist and primitivist views can also be found in parts of the Zhuangzi text.  Thanks to the discovery of an earlier version of the Laozi text within the Guodian corpus, we are able to gain a clearer picture of how a primitivist rhetoric that specifically targeted Confucian ideas was developed over time.  Although we should be careful not to draw too 106strong a conclusion from the textual discrepancies between a single archaeological rendition of the text and the received version, there is a notable difference in how the two textual versions approach the concept of li. These textual discrepancies have caused some scholars to wonder if the anti-Confucian rhetoric of the text was, in fact, a later addition.  This appears of greatest 107importance when we look at the different versions of chapter 19 of the received text,  where we 108find the two following lines: 絕聖棄智,民利百倍︔; Cut off sageliness (sheng 聖), abandon wisdom (zhi 智), and the people will benefit one-hundred-fold. 絕仁棄義,民復孝慈。︒  See Hagop Sarkissian, “The Darker Side of Daoist Primitivism,” Journal of Chinese Philosophy 37.2 105(2010) for reading of early primitivism as revolutionary. In the Guodian corpus, the Laozi passages were divided among three different bundles of bamboo 106slips, one of which also included the previously unknown “The Great One Gives Rise to Water” (Taiyi sheng shui 太⼀一⽣生⽔水) text. This raises further questions about the nature of the Laozi text, and whether or not the individual passages now seen as part of a single text had by this point in time yet been considered a single work. See Scott Cook, Bamboo Texts, 201-216 for a summary of the discussions over the significance of 107these textual discrepancies. Here, the received text is the same as the Mawangdui version, a silk text version of the Laozi text from 108the Han dynasty.67Cut off benevolence (ren 仁), abandon righteousness (yi 義), and the people will return to being filial and kind (xiaoci 孝慈). In the Guodian version of the text, the first half of the first line is instead, “cut off knowledge (zhi 智)  and abandon distinctions (bian 辨),” while the first half of the second line is instead, “cut 109 110off ingenuity (wei 偽) and abandon deception (zha 詐).”   It has been argued that this textual 111discrepancy suggests the received Laozi was influenced by later anti-Confucian thought that had not yet affected the Guodian version.  This discrepancy does help us at least to refine the issue 112being critiqued from the rough position that we might call the Laozi-primitivists, even if we cannot clearly date the different renditions of the texts.  Although in the received and Mawangdui texts, the “Confucian”  moralistic terms of ren and yi are singled out for attack, in both cases 113the underlying point being condemned is that of intellectualism and hypocricy.  If we accept the argument that the anti-Confucian rhetoric of the received text is a later influence, then this would suggest that this critique of the inauthentic and artificial would eventually crystallize into an  In the received Laozi, the context of zhi 智 clearly indicates it should be interpreted to mean 109“wisdom,” while in the Guodian manuscripts the context indicates it should be read closer to its cognate character zhi 知 to indicate an active intellectual “knowledge” with pejorative implications. Here, bian 辨, “distinctions,” could be read alternatively as bian 辯, “disputations.”  See Cook, 110Guodian, 225 n.4 for a discussion, and his decision to render this as bian 辨, which he translates as “discriminations.”  Either reading is plausible, but “distinctions” would be more consistent with the context. It should be noted that in the Guodian manuscripts, both wei 偽 and zha 詐 appear with the 111“heart” (xin ⼼心) radical. I have followed the translation in Cook, Bamboo Texts, 230 for these two terms, because “deception” and “ingenuity” convey the cognitive and emotional interiority of the concepts under attack in the text. For a discussion, see Cook, Bamboo Texts, 201-216.112 These views can be understood as either critiquing a broad Confucian-Mencian view, or else a 113Confucian and Mohist moralism, as the Mozi text also makes use of the pairing of ren and yi.  See Chen Guying, “Chu du jianben ‘Laozi’” 初讀簡本《⽼老⼦子》, Wenwu ⽂文物 509 (1998).68attack on specific moral terms such as ren and yi, and as we see in Chapter 28, also of li, where we are given this passage: 上德不德,是以有德︔; 下德不失德,是以無德。︒ 上德無為⽽而無以為︔;下德為之⽽而有以為。︒ 上仁為之⽽而無以為︔;上義為之⽽而有以為。︒ 上禮為之⽽而莫之應,則攘臂⽽而扔之。︒ 故失道⽽而後德,失德⽽而後仁,失仁⽽而後義,失義⽽而後禮。︒ 夫禮者,忠信之薄,⽽而亂之⾸首。︒ Those of highest Virtue (de 德) do not strive for Virtue and so they have it. Those of lowest Virtue never stray from Virtue and so they lack it. Those of highest Virtue practice nonaction and never act for ulterior motives. Those of lowest Virtue act and always have some ulterior motive. Those of highest benevolence (ren 仁) act, but without ulterior motives. Those of highest righteousness (yi 義) act, but with ulterior motives. Those who are ritually correct (li 禮) act, but if others do not respond, they roll up their sleeves and resort to force. And so, When the Way was lost there was Virtue; When Virtue was lost there was benevolence; When benevolence was lost there was righteousness; When righteousness was lost there were the rites. The rites (li 禮) are the wearing thin of loyalty and trust, and the beginning of chaos.  114In this chapter, li is singled out as as the very apex of a corrupted and inauthentic society. The only other reference to li appears in Chapter 21 where the “rites of mourning” (sangli 喪禮) are referenced in a positive light and the decorous practice of ritual is described as a means of expressing the proper mental attitude towards employing the military:  115吉事尚左,凶事尚右。︒  Laozi 38, translation from Ivanhoe, The Daodejing of Laozi (New York: Seven Bridges Press, 2002), 11441. Conducting war was in fact a highly ritualized affair, with religious implications. See Yates, “Law and 115the Military in Early China” and Sawyer, “Martial Prognostication,” both in Military Culture in Imperial  China, edited by Nicola di Cosmo (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 2009).69偏將軍居左,上將軍居右, ⾔言以喪禮處之。︒ 殺⼈人之衆,以哀悲泣之, 戰勝以喪禮處之。︒ On auspicious occasions, precedence is given to the left; On inauspicious occasions, precedence is given to the right. The lieutenant commander is stationed on the left; The supreme commander is stationed on the right. This shows that the supreme commander is associated with the rites of mourning. When  great numbers of people have been killed, one weeps for them in grief and sorrow. Military victory is thus associated with the rites of mourning.  116While this positive reference to the rites of mourning appears in both the Guodian manuscripts and the received Laozi, the attack on li found in received Chapter 28 is not found in the Guodian texts. Without making too strong a claim about this discrepancy, it should at least be noted that the version of the text contemporaneous with the Confucian Guodian manuscripts under discussion in this study does not directly attack Confucian ideas. This could represent the ideology of the tomb occupant, who preferred a version of the text that did not condemn Confucian ideas directly, it could be reflect nothing more than happenstance in terms of the particular passages that ended up in this version of the text. At the very least, we should acknowledge the possibility that a general critique of complex society may have, over time, come to be directed explicitly towards the moral virtues associated with Confucian writers, and that ritual propriety would come to be seen as the core feature of this corrupted society.  In the Outer and Miscellaneous chapters of the Zhuangzi we can see ways in which the development of this critique against civilization targeted the notion of li as representative of the hypocritical and corrupted state of individuals in the central states. In the “Mountain  Laozi 32, translation from Ivanhoe, Daoedejing, 31.11670Tree” (Shanmu 山⽊木) chapter, the unrefined and uncorrupted nature of foreign (or barbarian) peoples of the southern regions are used to exemplify this point: 南越有⾢邑焉,名為建德之國。︒其民愚⽽而朴,少私⽽而寡欲︔;知作⽽而不知藏,與⽽而不求其報︔;不知義之所適,不知禮之所將︔;猖狂妄⾏行,乃蹈乎⼤大⽅方︔;其⽣生可樂,其死可葬。︒吾願君去國捐俗,與道相輔⽽而⾏行。︒ In Nanyue there is a city and its name is The Land of Virtue Established. Its people are foolish and naïve, few in thoughts of self, scant in desires. They know how to make, but not how to lay away; the give, but look for nothing in return. They do not know what accords with right, they do not know what conforms to ritual. Uncouth, uncaring, they move recklessly -- and this way they tread the path of the Great Method. Their birth brings rejoicing, their death a fine funeral. So I would ask you to discard your state, break away from its customs, and, with the Way as your helper, journey there.  117In this passage, the Lord of Lu 魯侯 is the audience of this speech, and this choice is not incidental. Lu represented not only the home of Confucius, but by extension also the very core of Zhou culture. We can see a further example in which Lu and its refined culture is once again the target of criticism in the “Tian zifang” ⽥田⼦子坊 chapter: 中國之民,明乎禮義⽽而陋乎知⼈人⼼心。︒昔之⾒見我者,進退⼀一成規,⼀一成矩. These men of the central states are enlightened in ritual principles (liyi 禮義) but stupid in the understanding of men's hearts. Yesterday, when this man came to see me, his advances and withdrawals (jintui 進退) were as precise as though marked by compass or T square.  118In the “Miscellaneous” chapter, “Gengsang Chu” 庚桑楚, we can see a primitivist critique that is precisely in line with Chapter 28 of the Laozi, and the hypocritical construction of virtues and practices that exemplify the corrupted moral state of complex society is highlighted. In this case, a very clear and mundane example of ritualized courtesy is provided, but with the twist that the  Translation from Burton Watson, The Complete Works of Zhuangzi (New York: Columbia University 117Press, 2013), 158. Translation, with emendations, from Watson, The Complete Works of Zhuangzi, 167.11871more elaborate the enactment of ritualized conduct the less meaningful and sincere the social relationship:  蹍市⼈人之⾜足,則辭以放驁,兄則以嫗,⼤大親則已矣。︒故曰:至禮有不⼈人 If you step on a stranger's foot in the market place, you apologize at length for your carelessness. If you step on your older brother's foot, you give him an affectionate pat, and if you step on your parent's foot, you know you are already forgiven. So it is said, true ritual propriety (zhi li 至禮) makes no distinction of persons….  119In these primitivist chapters of the Miscellaneous chapters of the Zhuangzi, the refined values of elite society are repeatedly contrasted with the earthy, humble and genuine conduct of people whose natures have not yet been corrupted by the artful cunning of learned men, and the deportment and precise ritualized conduct of society are deliberately transgressed to make this point. Perhaps nowhere is this more famously or obviously done than in the passages regarding death and mourning, such as the account in “Perfect Happiness” (Zhile 至樂) where Huizi visits Zhuangzi to offer condolences on the death of his wife only to find his friend sitting with his legs splayed out, drumming on a tub and singing.  These examples show that the strictures of ritualized conduct became a target of criticism for the schools of primitivism and individualism that we see most clearly in the Outer and Miscellaneous chapters of the Zhuangzi, as well as in certain sections of the Laozi. In these cases, the values encompassed in the term li are widely understood, and attempts to provide clear examples of li in practice point out the embodied enactments of courtesy, such as advancing and withdrawing or apologizing. Transgressive acts that are employed to shock the audience and demonstrate a more authentic nature are also performances that only make sense within the context of a shared vocabulary of ritual decorum. Zhuangzi sitting with his legs splayed out (jiju  Translation, with emendations, from Watson, The Complete Works of Zhuangzi, 196-7.11972箕踞) and singing  is a very clear ritualized performance that makes use of a sense of ritual and 120the available vocabulary and syntax of ritual formalism and respect. On one hand, this ritualized conduct is carefully designed to offend a conservative audience, but by doing so it also makes use of ritual to perform a very particular concept of authenticity. The body becomes the medium through which civilization itself is critiqued through ritual expression. This example is particularly important because it shows how someone can be perform what we, as a Western academic audience, would describe as “ritual,” as a provocative and conscious violation of what these early Chinese thinkers would describe as li. Conclusion  Although the Confucian emphasis on the importance of li would be a contributing factor in how the term was received and discussed, it also clear that the term had its own meaning within Warring States society that was not beholden to Confucian thinkers. Li was widely understood to refer to a shared sense of normative interpersonal conduct, as well as the specific ritualized actions that defined this conduct. For some thinkers, such as the authors of the Annals of Lü Buwei, the moral conduct of li also had at least an implicit connection to Heaven, which lent it an additional normative weight. For thinkers both within and outside Confucian circles, the social mores and rules of courtesy that defined li had implications for important political problems relating to public order and the often dangerous dynamics at court. Finally, the  In “The Great and Venerable Teacher” (Dazongshi ⼤大宗師), another example is given of people 120playing music and singing in the presence of a corpse. Confucius’ disciple, Zigong ⼦子貢 comes upon this scene and asks in horror, “Singing in the presence of the corpse, is this in accordance with ritual propriety?” (臨⼫尸⽽而歌,禮乎?).73strictures of li also encompassed views about the very nature of complex society, which is to say the social and political structure requiring social stratification and hierarchies. For both critics and proponents of the social order of the Three Dynasties and its implied political structure and cultural values, the values and practices of li are seen as foundational.  As li was more aggressively asserted within the political arena by Confucian thinkers, critiques of li would become more clearly articulated. This is most clearly demonstrated in the Outer and Miscellaneous chapters of Zhuangzi, where individualist and primitivist arguments are couched in terms that condemn the civilizing, and hence inauthentic, force of ritual propriety and the way that it defined the way that people should express themselves. Transgressions of social norms are performed in these narratives through ritualized acts that deliberately invert assumptions about formalism and tradition in order to express these authors’ views on the properly authentic expressions of their inborn nature. Primitive and “barbarian” cultures are also used to exemplify an untarnished version of human nature. As will be more thoroughly discussed in Chapter Two of this study, this contrast between the social customs of the Zhou cultural sphere and foreign cultures could be defined by the presence or lack of li.  The very concept of civilization could be defined by the norms and expectations of li, and such a civilized society was only deemed possible by the way the individual and their body were induced to perform this structure through acts of ritual. In the Annals of Lü Buwei, the origins of complex and ordered human society is presented as beginning with the division of people by gender, age and status, and also by the rules of deference and submission that are enacted by the body through the conduct of advancing, withdrawing and bowing. These actions are at their most refined and elaborated at the highest echelons of elite society, but they would also cascade into 74society more broadly, down to the villagers and common people. In this account, the social technology of li precedes even the material innovations of storehouses and elaborate clothing. This view would be put even more strongly by late Warring States Confucian thinker Xunzi who would provide his own account of the origins of human civilization in his essay, “Discourse on Ritual” (Lilun 禮論), where the regulating power of li is presented as the origin by which the fundamentally selfish nature of human biology was tamed. However, as we have seen, even for critics of Confucianism li is expressed as a founding principle of complex society; to the extent the demands of this society might go against the grain of people’s natural selves, li must be transgressed and discarded.  These interconnected issues show the larger setting within which Confucian thinkers would develop a justification for li as a tool for regulating the affective elements that underlie public order, court interactions, and the ethnically and hierarchically delineated concept of civilization. This view carried with it implications about the dynamics of political power, and the expectations of public responsibility (or oppression) that this concept could convey. 
75Chapter 2: Reforming the Rites and Changing Conventions Introduction  This chapter explores some of the challenges and consequences involved in positioning ritual as a valuable tool in the political sphere. As we have seen in the previous chapter, the idea of li was connected to the history of the Three Ages and the ideas of civilization and refined customs and practices that this entailed. These concepts of interpersonal behaviour and refined customs were associated with specific ritualized and normative cultural practices, including the wearing of appropriate clothing and the embodied practices of submission and respect. They also implied values of tradition, gender distinction and social hierarchy that, through their association with ideas of civilization, carried assumptions about the correct political and ritual structure of society. Because of these wider implications of li, the theories about ritual psychology proposed in the Guodian manuscripts were also entangled within broader debates over culture and tradition. Asserting ritual’s value as a form of social technology that could achieve specific political goals required these thinkers to clarify the nature of ritual and specifying the ways that ritual practices functioned in society. One potential result of this rhetorical approach was that it could place historical practices into the realm of open debate, raising questions about their social utility. If ritual practices are justified by their instrumental value in terms of cultivating political authority and creating social order, then this also creates a rhetorical opening for critics to argue for alternative practices and customs that might better achieve these goals.  These would become major points of contention as thinkers were forced to construct their political arguments within the context of beliefs about an idealized view of the past. The Warring 76States period was marked by dramatic social and political changes, and so even as this idealized past was being imagined and fixed through the act of writing, major political reforms were being implemented all across the Chinese cultural sphere that pushed against the actual practices of antiquity. This meant that political arguments were often couched in terms that addressed issues of continuity and change, or tradition and innovation. The construction of a political theory could also require presenting a new historical paradigm in order to explain and justify it. These historical paradigms were often framed in terms of the origins of civilization, or the emphasis of particular historical periods as representative of the best practices of state rulers. While Confucians would tend to emphasize the Zhou state, Mohists tended to privilege the deeper antiquity of the early sage kings; thinkers of a primitivist or individualist bent would tend to privilege examples from an even deeper antiquity before civilization was deemed to have become too corrupted. Han Fei would take the strongest reformist line by arguing that models from the past, while instructive, should not be blindly followed when dealing with contemporary problems.  This contention over tradition would be particularly pertinent for theories of ritual, due to the relationship between ritual and historical authority.  Ritual practices are closely tied 121together with a sense of tradition, and the assertion of historical precedent is a prevalent strategy in the production of ritualized acts. As Bell argues, it is the “fixity of ritual’s structure” that lends it its prestige, and consequently much of its social power.  Formalization, one of the key 122constitutive elements of ritualization, is able to lend ritual a form of traditional authority through  For a thorough discussion of ritual’s connection to historical authority see Bell, Ritual Theory, 121118-124; see also Bell’s discussion of the strategic use of traditionalism in the construction of what she called “ritual-like activities,” Ritual Perspectives and Dimensions, 145-150. Bell, Ritual Theory, 120.12277appeals to the past.  This can be done subtly, as the very act of formalization can imply its own 123prestige by employing models of the past. Through its ties to the practices of historical precedent, formalized language and actions can also draw on feelings about ethnicity, nostalgia, and the cosmological order.  At the same time, “tradition” is not fixed, and ritualization does not simply employ concepts of tradition to legitimize itself, but can also engage in the act of constructing tradition in new ways. This means that ritual is not simply the rote enactment of a fixed sense of tradition, but must be understood as one form of strategic action embedded within a particular cultural and historical setting. As Bell puts it: The continuity, innovation, and oppositional contrasts established in each case are strategies that arise from the ‘sense of ritual’ played out under particular conditions — not in a fixed ritual structure, a closed grammar, or an embalmed historical model.  124Understood as a strategic form of action, ritualization plays an active role in the construction, replication and employment of concepts of tradition, but the way that it does so depends on the field of cultural meaning within which it is used, as well as the political and social stakes for those participating in or debating on ritual practices.  For Confucian thinkers, the legitimacy and authority of ritual propriety comes largely from its connection to the past, but the relationship is not quite so simple. In the Analects we can see some examples in which the construction of ritual acts is being considered in terms that weigh the strategic value of tradition. Confucius speaks most broadly of this, of course, with his  Bloch, Political Language and Oratory (New York: Academic Press, 1975): 3-4, 9. Cited in Bell, 123Ritual Theory, 120. Bell, Ritual Theory 124.12478claim that he merely “transmitted” (shu 述) but did not “innovate” (zuo 作) . In this case he is 125speaking broadly about cultural traditions. However, there are also examples where this plays out more specifically in terms of ritualized acts: ⼦子曰:「麻冕,禮也︔;今也純,儉。︒吾從眾。︒拜下,禮也︔;今拜乎上,泰也。︒雖違眾,吾從下。︒」 The Master said, “A ceremonial cap made of linen is prescribed by the rites (li 禮), but these days people use silk. This is frugal, and I follow the majority. To bow before ascending the stairs is what is prescribed by the rites, but these days people bow after ascending. This is arrogant, and — though it goes against the majority — I continue to bow before ascending.”  126Here, the concern is over the internal feeling of submission associated with the ritual conduct, and a very limited range of change is allowable in the case of the ceremonial cap. The Analects is fraught with a sense of ongoing loss of traditional practices and Confucius is portrayed in this text as taking on the tragic mantel of the preserver of these practices. In the passage above, he attempts to navigate the divide between following the practices of the majority (cong zhong 從眾) and the need to preserve the best version of ritual practice by opposing them (wei zhong 違眾). Implicit to this tension is an awareness that historical practices are, at some level, constructed and contingent and that it takes effort to preserve them. In this particular case, the strategic construction of the ritual act involves at least three elements: the embodied act of submission through bowing, the physical space of the stairs that leads up to the ruler, and Confucius’ evocation of a putative historical authority by deliberately bowing before ascending. The fact that he was no longer in the majority suggests that this evocation of historical authority  Analects 7.1.125 Analects 9.3, translation from Slingerland, Analects, 87.12679was not particularly powerful, and was perhaps no longer undergirded by shared assumptions about the authoritative relationship between ministers and rulers.  The Analects also demonstrates an awareness that these customs and ritual practices developed over time — from the Confucian perspective, they were improved over time until they reached their apex in the Western Zhou.   The loss of these ideal versions of ritual practice 127represents the ongoing dissolution of the authoritative structure of the Western Zhou state, a point made clear by Confucius’ frustration with the ministerial families’ gradual encroachment on the sumptuary and ritual privileges of the Zhou ruling family and their descendants.  This 128sense of loss is presented somewhat ambiguously in the following passage, where Confucius is critical of his disciple Zigong: ⼦子貢欲去告朔之餼⽺羊。︒⼦子曰:「賜也,爾愛其⽺羊,我愛其禮。︒」 Zigong wanted to do away with the practice of sacrificing a lamb to announce the beginning of the month. The Master said, “Zigong! You regret the loss of the lamb, whereas I regret the loss of the rite (li 禮).  129Here too, Confucius laments the ongoing disappearance of the Zhou state ritual system. The disappearing gushuo 告朔 ritual appears to have been one that represented the connection between the ruler of the Zhou state and his regional lords, and its loss can be presumed to have been an indication of moral decay. In this case, the historical and religious setting of the gushuo ritual seems to have been largely lost.  See especially Analects 2.23 and 3.14. As noted in the previous chapter, this perfection of culture is 127made clearest in Xunzi’s essay, “Discourse on Ritual,” and as we will see in Chapter Four of this study this view of ritual is also laid out very clearly in the Guodian text Xing zi ming chu. For example, in Analects 3.1.128 Analects 3.17, translation from Slingerland, Analects, 24.12980 To perform these effectively “lost” rites of bowing before ascending stairs or the gushuo sacrifice is to evoke a complicated relationship with tradition. Confucius’ performances assert the propriety of specific political relationships by employing the legitimizing power of historical authority, but they are also arguably creative in the sense that he is attempting to construct a model for solving problems of his own age.  The small allowance of a change to the material of 130the ritual cap suggests an idea of a best practice of ritual, and the model of ritual practices that can best achieve his specific political ends are those that emphasize the social and political relationships that defined the Western Zhou state. This connection of li to the Western Zhou state, although not totally ahistorical, was also something that Confucian thinkers were continually imagining and constructing. It also created a direct association between the Confucian agenda and a highly specific set of social, religious and political concepts that were largely at odds with the general trend of social change that marked the Warring States period.  This chapter will explore the complicated relationship that li had with with historical authority and political reform in the Warring States period. This will be done first by looking at the different Warring States narratives of the Spring and Autumn statesman Chong’er 重⽿耳, first from the Han Feizi, then from the Zuo zhuan 左傳 and then finally focussing on the narrative from the Guoyu 國語 text. The differences between each text’s portrayal of the moral lesson to be drawn from the life of Chong’er show how authorial purpose shaped the portrayal of li in these texts. The example from the Guoyu text in particular presents a clear attempt to construct a  As will be noted in more depth below, this “ambivalence” regarding creation and innovation is a 130prevalent tension in early Chinese thought, as has been demonstrated by Michael Puett, Ambivalence of Creation: Debates Concerning Innovation and Artifice in Early China (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2001).81notion of tradition in which a Confucian conceptualization of li is at the centre. In this idea of tradition, the patrilineal system of relationships between the living and their ancestors is asserted as the core element of li’s relationship to politics.  The second part of this chapter then turns to the wider issue of social customs, and explores how the Confucian assertion of li as a valuable social technology is embroiled within a larger debate about culture and innovation. Because li was tied to a specific picture of traditional political and social order, these customs were at odds with the need for political reform that many statesmen and thinkers were pursuing. While Confucian thinkers would push for the value of the practice of traditional normative ritual behaviour encapsulated in the concept of li, a parallel concept of social customs, or su 俗, was also available for thinkers to conceptualize the cultural traditions and customs that varied across time and space. Just as li would assert the value of normative customs of clothing, funerals, and the performance of ancestral veneration, discussions of su could argue that any such performances are historically contingent and should be judged by their social utility, not their putative historical authority. This point also raises compelling questions about the place of not just tradition but also social practice more generally in any attempt to accomplish political reform. These examples provide greater context for understanding what was at stake in the development of a theory of li, as well as how intellectual opponents countered the appeals to historical authority that justified the Confucians’ political vision. 82The Historiography of Li  It remains an open question precisely how and when li came to take on its meaning as an internal, ethical value and a concept that could restore and resolve the political turmoil of the Eastern Zhou period. Sources are scant for understanding the intellectual world of the Spring and Autumn period (771 - c. 400 BCE), and so it remains uncertain to what degree Confucius and his followers were innovative in their ethical conceptualization of li, versus to what degree they were simply continuing a trend that was already underway. One possible historical source for answering this question is the Spring and Autumn Annals (Chunqiu 春秋, henceforth Annals), the historiographical record from which the Spring and Autumn period derives its name. This text is organized chronologically into the reign periods of twelve Dukes of the state of Lu 魯, a region with historical associations to Confucius, to whom authorship of the text would come to be ascribed. The Annals is laconic, often only giving the date and barest description of events, apparently drawing on the practice of court scribes (shi 史) who documented court events for the purposes of leaving a record for posterity and for communicating to ancestral spirits. Scribes presumably also transmitted additional information about these accounts across generations, and there was almost certainly also a living oral tradition of narrative accounts of figures from history. The terse and often unclear nature of these scribal documents gave rise to other historiographical and narrative historical accounts that came to surround the Annals, most notably the Zuo Tradition (Zuo zhuan 左傳, henceforth, Zuo), a text that, although not quite a 83commentary on the Annals, does expand upon, elucidate and make moral assertions based on the events recorded in the Annals.  131 Yuri Pines has argued that careful exegesis can allow us to make use of the speeches of statesmen in the Zuo as an authentic historical source of the political ideas of the Spring and Autumn period. He concludes that we can trace in the Zuo a change in how ritual order was conceptualized, with the concept of li gradually taking on the broader ethical concepts so often attributed to Confucius. As he frames it, By distilling the hierarchical principles of li from its ceremonial form, they succeeded in expanding its meaning to encompass ever broader spheres of activity, and to extend the relevance of li from a handful of higher dignitaries to the majority of the populace.  132For Pines, this gradual change resulted in li’s meaning shifting from specific reference to sacrificial rites  to include the wider space of the ritual-political order and even people’s 133internal moral qualities. Unfortunately, this is complicated by the fact that the Zuo is a problematic and difficult text, comprised of multiple layers of editing and authorship that are difficult to sort out. As David Schaberg has noted, the Zuo text takes the form of a literary narrative, which might more appropriately place the text within the category of literature than that of “historical record”.  What makes the use of this text particularly problematic is that the 134most clearly ideological layer of authorship employs the concept of li as the normative lens through which political events are interpreted. The fact that the speeches asserting the primary  See especially Schaberg, Patterned Past and Pines, Foundations.131 Pines, Foundations, 91-92.132 The view that li originally referred to sacrificial rites largely derives from the etymology of the 133character, and the definition in the Shouwen jiezi 說⽂文解字, “Li is “to carry out”; it is the means by which one serves the spirits to gain good fortune” (禮:履也。︒所以事神致福也). Schaberg, A Patterned Past.13484importance of li to the political order so frequently mirror this ideological viewpoint raises significant questions about their historical veracity. Ultimately, it is difficult to separate the narrative intention of the authors of the Zuo from any authentic record of state speeches, and there is also little evidence beyond these historiographical texts to suggest that this innovative idea of li as political solution to the political turmoil of the times predated the Warring States period, or was common outside of Confucian, or at least what Schaberg calls “traditionalist,” circles.  Thoroughly tackling this issue ultimately lies outside the scope of this study, and so for now it will suffice to say that regardless of the authenticity of the speeches of the Zuo text, by the Warring States period the meaning of li seems to have mainly referred to notions of decorum, etiquette and social mores, along with the associated practices involved in the social enactment of these notions that were discussed in the previous chapter. Confucian writers were asserting li as a concept of urgent political importance, and regardless of whether this was a continuation of ideas deriving from Spring and Autumn statesmen or an innovation of their own, they presented li as representative of the traditional moral and religious structure of the Zhou state.  Here, I want to look at just one example of this traditionalist perspective on li, and the way that this was built into a specific view of politics and inter-state relations as expressed through ritual action. This will be done by considering three different versions of the same narrative. The narrative in question is of Chong’er 重⽿耳 (697-628 BCE), more famously known as Duke Wen of Jin (Jin Wen Gong 晉⽂文公). According to these narratives, he spent years in political exile after fleeing his home state of Jin during a succession crisis, wandering between states, both of the “foreign” Di 狄 polity as well as several Zhou states before finally returning to 85Jin to rule briefly but successfully from 636 to 628 BCE. His importance to history is owed to the power achieved by the state of Jin during his reign that ultimately culminated in his becoming the second Hegemon, or Lord Protector (ba 霸), a title nominally conferred by the Zhou king but which in fact indicated his weakening authority.  135 The accounts of Chong’er’s years of exile differ in some details between the three versions of the narrative, but the basic story remains the same. Due to political intrigue caused largely by the non-Chinese concubine of his father, Chong’er is forced to leave the state of Jin. He eventually begins to wander with his retinue between different Zhou states. During this exile, a number of state rulers ignore the remonstrations of their advisors and treat Chong’er without “courtesy” (li). These advisors are able to see that Chong’er, a man of quality with a retinue of superb followers, is bound to eventually take control of the powerful state of Jin and will likely exact his vengeance upon those who mistreated him in his exile. Where these accounts differ most sharply is in the respective lessons that are drawn from the events.  Han Fei’s account of Chong’er’s years of wandering is used to illustrate one of the “Ten Faults” (Shiguo ⼗〸十過) of the chapter of that name, in this case “having a small state but behaving without courtesy, and neglecting remonstrating ministers.” For Han Fei, the ruler of a weak state should not risk angering his more powerful neighbours. Violating li could have very real and significant consequences, giving one’s enemy a potential casus belli for a punitive campaign. As in all of these accounts, in the Hanfeizi Chong’er travels in his exile to a variety of states, where  The first Lord Protector was Duke Huan of Qi (齊桓公, r. 685-643 BCE), during whose reign and 135under the premiership of Guan Zhong 管仲 (c. 720-645 BCE) the state of Qi 齊 became a major power. Duke Huan established a league of northern states, with Qi in a position of leadership, ostensibly to unite the Zhou cultural sphere and defend the authority of the king against foreign enemies.86he is subject to slights and humiliations. First, he goes to the state of Cao 曹, where the ruler rudely demands him to remove his upper garments so that he can see Chong’er’s famous fused ribs. The Duke of Cao’s minister, Xi Fuji 僖負羈 attempts to remonstrate with him, but is ignored. On the advice of his wife, Xi sends a gift of food with jade discs hidden within to Chong’er, who accepts the courteous intention but declines the jade. As predicted by Xi’s wife, upon taking control of the Jin state, Chong’er is swift to deliver retribution to Cao. The only figure to survive this retribution is Xi, who is informed that his household compound will be spared any slaughter, allowing him to shelter a number of families. This outcome leads Han Fei to note, “This is the value of courtesy” (ci li zhi suo yong ye 此禮之所⽤用也), and he concludes with the following historical lesson: 故曹⼩小國也。︒⽽而迫於晉、︑楚之間。︒其君之危猶累卵也。︒⽽而以無禮蒞之。︒此所以絕世也。︒故曰。︒國⼩小無禮。︒不⽤用諫臣。︒則絕世之勢也。︒ Thus, Cao was a small state, pressed between Jin and Chu.  The danger for Cao’s ruler was 136(as precarious) as a pile of eggs, and yet he treated (his guest) without courtesy. This is how it came that his posterity was cut off. So, it is said: having a small state and behaving without courtesy, and neglecting remonstrating ministers is a condition that will result in the cutting off of one’s posterity.  137 The Zuo version of the story draws greater significance from the concept of li. For Han Fei, li’s importance only extends as far as the capacity for rudeness to have negative political consequences for rulers of small states, but the Zuo text makes li into an issue of much greater significance. In the Zuo’s layers of authorial perspective, both the anonymous Gentleman (Junzi 君⼦子) and Confucius himself use ritual performance as a means for judging the decisions of  At this point, almost certainly the two most powerful states in the Chinese cultural sphere.136 Han Feizi, “Ten Faults” (Shiguo ⼠士過).13787historical actors, and other characters within the narratives themselves will sometimes use violations of ritual norms as a means for prognosticating political and personal futures.  As 138Durrant et al. note, The order Zuozhuan offers as the surest antidote to the growing chaos of the age is ritual propriety, or li 禮. In speech after speech, Zuozhuan rhetoricians warn of the deleterious results of departures from ritual propriety. In fact, the motor of historical change — invariably change for the worse — is deviation from ritual.  139In Schaberg’s description, li “names an ideal order of mimesis in which prescribed social structures and procedures outlive the successive generations who use them.”  Thus, failures to 140adhere to li are often viewed as signs of impending disaster, even if the way these stories play out are not always clear-cut. Perhaps the most famous example is the account of a battle between the states of Song and Chu at Hong 泓 River in the twenty-second year of Lord Xi (638 BCE). In this battle, the Song troops had the advantage of having already formed their ranks before the Chu troops were able to cross the river. Against the advice of his advisor, Ziyu ⼦子⿂魚, the duke waited for the Chu troops to cross the river and fully form their ranks before attacking. The result was a total defeat for the Song. When criticized by the capital populace (guoren 國⼈人), the duke defends his actions with reference to the proper and ethical conduct of war: 君⼦子不重傷,不禽⼆二⽑毛,古之為軍也,不以阻隘也,寡⼈人雖亡國之餘,不⿎鼓不成列。︒ The noble man does not inflict wounds twice, nor does he take as prisoners those with graying hair. When the ancients engaged in warfare, they did not take advantage of difficult terrain and  Durrant et al. note that there are “seventy-eight instances distributed relatively evenly through out the 138text” of the Gentleman providing historical judgements, and twenty-five instances of Confucius being quaoted, “mostly in the years of the Lu Lords who ruled in the latter part of the Spring and Autumn period.” Zuo Tradition, xxviii. Durrant et al., Zuo Tradition, xxviii.139 Schaberg, Patterned Past, 74-75.14088narrow straits. Although I, the unworthy one, am but a remnant of a fallen domain, I do not bang the drum to urge an attack upon those who have not formed their ranks.  141However, at no point in the text are the Song Duke’s actions stated to be “in accordance with ritual,” and indeed the entire point of this narrative appears to be to point out his arrogant and foolish personality. Despite Chu winning the battle, the following account is provided in which an explicit failure to adhere to the rules of li by Chu is given as an example of why the king will fail to fulfill his own ambitions: 楚⼦子入饗于鄭,九獻,庭實旅百,加籩⾖豆六品,饗畢,夜出,⽂文芊送于軍,取鄭⼆二姬以歸,叔詹曰,楚王其不沒乎,為禮卒於無別,無別不可謂禮,將何以沒,諸侯是以知其不遂霸也。︒ On the dingchou day (9), the Master of Chu entered Zheng to receive ceremonial toasts. There were nine wine offerings, and in the court goods were displayed by the hundreds. Supplemental delicacies in bamboo and wooden containers amounted to six types. When the ceremonial toasts were over, the guests came out by night, with Mi, the wife of Lord Wen of Zheng, escorting the Master of Chu back to his military camp. He took two women of the Zheng ruler’s family and returned home. Shuzhan said, “I expect the King of Chu will not die a natural death! In performing the ritual, he ends up by making no distinctions between male and female (wu bie 無別)” What lacks appropriate distinctions cannot be considered ritual propriety. How will he die a natural death?” The regional lords knew by this that the Master of Chu would not achieve his goal of becoming Lord Protector.  142In this example, neglecting the rules of li takes the form of failing to properly separate men and women, a violation that is sufficient to determine the fate of the state of Chu. Implicit in this critique is the argument that the cultural values of Chu are so fundamentally depraved that its leaders cannot achieve political success. This view of li is consistent throughout Zuo zhuan, and although the precise lessons to be gleaned from these events are not always consistent with what  Zuo zhuan, Lord Xi 22. Translation from Durrant et al., Zuo Tradition, 357.141 Zuo zhuan, Lord Xi 22. Translation from Durrant et al., Zuo Tradition, 359. Emendations have been 142made for the sake of consistency in translation of titles and terms in this study. Durrant et al. translate ba 霸 as “overlord” and zhuhou 諸侯 as “princes,”where I have translated these terms as Lord Protector and Regional Lords respectively.89we might expect from a Confucian reading of history, li is clearly viewed in the text as having a genuine moral force in the world.  In terms of the narrative of Chong’er’s years of wandering, the Zuo account is much longer than Han Fei’s. When he finally leaves the land of the Di, he first passes through Wey 衛 where it is simply stated that he they did not treat him with courtesy (bu li yan 不禮焉). He then travels to Qi where he is treated so well he does not wish to depart, and in a slapstick affair his advisors are forced to get him drunk and cart him out of the state. He then arrives at Cao where the ruler of Cao, hoping to see his famous fused ribs, spies on him while he is bathing. Here, we also hear the story of Xi Fuji and his wife. In Zheng he once again is treated without courtesy before he finally arrives in Chu, where the ruler treats him with a banquet (xiang 饗). The consequences for Xi Fuji in the Zuo account are similar to the account from Han Feizi. On defeating Cao, 令無入僖負羈之宮,⽽而免其族,報施也。︒ He ordered that no one enter Xi Fuji’s residence, and he pardoned his entire line. This was to reward Xi Fuji’s generosity.  143In the Zuo account, this angers two of Chong’er’s advisors who set fire to a building belonging to Xi Fuji’s family.  Finally, the Guoyu closely follows the Zuo account, but appends some lengthy speeches from the remonstrating advisors, using these characters as mouthpieces for an ideological interpretation of li that embeds it within a specific traditionalist political philosophy. In this  Zuo zhuan, “Lord Xi 28.” Translation from Durrant et al., Zuo Tradition, 411. Durrant et al. translate 143zu 族 as “house,” whereas I have translated it as “line” for consistency with other translations in this study.90account, when Chong’er arrives in the state of Wey 衛, the duke, anxious about the military threats from the Xing 邢 and Di 狄 polities, is too preoccupied to be properly courteous to his guest. Chong’er then travels to the state of Cao 曹, where the duke is discourteous (buli 不禮) to him, spying on Chong’er while he bathes in order to see his fused ribs, and once more he is treated to rude behaviour in Zheng. In each of these cases, the rude ruler in question has an important advisor attempt to warn him of the foolishness of his behaviour, and in each case this advice is rebuffed.  In the first instance, the Duke of Wey is advised by his Prime Minister, Ning Zhuangzi 甯莊⼦子, not to treat courtesy as a minor issue that can be set aside during times of distress: 夫禮,國之紀也︔;親,民之結也︔;善,德之建也。︒國無紀不可以終,民無結不可以固,德無建不可以⽴立。︒此三者,君之所慎也。︒今君棄之,無乃不可乎!晉公⼦子善⼈人也,⽽而衛親也,君不禮焉,棄三德矣。︒ Li is the guiding principle of the state, kin affection is the binding knot of the people, and goodness is the foundation of Virtue. A state without a guiding principle will not be able to endure, a people without a binding knot will not be able to unite, and Virtue without a foundation will not be able to stand. These are the three things over which a Ruler must be concerned. My lord must not cast them aside! This prince of Jin is a good person and is of close kin relation to Wey, but when my lord does not treat him with courtesy he has thus cast aside these three virtues.  144Immediately after presenting this argument based on the moral virtues of necessity to the state, Ning takes a different tack: 康叔,⽂文之昭也。︒唐叔,武之穆也。︒周之⼤大功在武,天祚將在武族。︒茍姬未絕周室,⽽而俾守天聚者,必武族也。︒武族唯晉實昌,晉胤公⼦子實德。︒晉仍無道,天祚有德,晉 “Records of Jin” (Jinyu 晉語”), Guoyu 國語. Translations from Guoyu are my own, but I was also able 144to make reference to sections translated in Alan Imber, “Kuo Yü: An Early Chinese Text and its Relationship with the Tso Chuan,” Doctoral Dissertation, Stockholm University (1975).91之守祀,必公⼦子也。︒若復⽽而修其德,鎮撫其民,必獲諸侯,以討無禮。︒君弗蚤圖,衛⽽而在討。︒⼩小⼈人是懼,敢不盡⼼心。︒ Kang Shu was enshrined to the left of King Wen, and Tang Shu was enshrined to the right of King Wu.  The great success of the Zhou resides with Wu , and so Heaven’s favour was 145 146conferred upon his line (zu 族). If the Ji have not yet been cut off from the Zhou court and still preside over Heaven’s concerns, then this must be attributed to the Wu line. Of the Wu line, only Jin has truly prospered, and of the descendants of Jin this prince is truly virtuous. Jin is now without the Way, but Heaven confers its favour upon the Virtuous and so it must be this prince who will (once again) oversee its sacrifices. If he returns home and then cultivates his virtue and pacifies and nurtures the people, then he will surely win over the regional lords and use (this authority) to pursue punitive campaigns against those who did not treat him with courtesy. If my lord does not reconsider this action immediately, Wey will be subject to this punitive action. Your humble servant fears this outcome, and so dares to speak so frankly.  147In the second instance, in the state of Cao, the duke’s minister Xi Fuji provides his ruler with a warning over his failure to treat Chong’er with proper courtesy and receives the following rejoinder from his lord: 諸侯之亡公⼦子其多矣,誰不過此!亡者皆無禮者也,余焉能盡禮焉! Among the regional lords there are plenty of exiled princes, and who among them has not passed through here? As these exiles are all lacking courtesy themselves, why should it be I who must extend full courtesy?  148Xi Fuji responds by emphasizing the moral importance of li, particularly in caring for those who are related kin (qin 親): 臣聞之,愛親明賢,政之⼲干也。︒禮賓矜窮,禮之宗也。︒禮以紀政,國之常也。︒ Your servant has heard it said that the pillar of good government lies in caring for those of close kin relation and recognizing worthiness; that the root of li is being courteous (li) to  Kang Shu was the founder of the state of Wey, and Tang Shu was the founder of the state of Jin. Both 145were immediate family members of the Zhou royal lineage, and therefore of the Ji 姬 lineage. For having overthrown the tyrannical King Zhow of the Shang 商紂王, and establishing the Western 146Zhou state. “Records of Jin” (Jinyu 晉語”), Guoyu 國語.147 “Records of Jin” (Jinyu 晉語”), Guoyu 國語.14892guests and taking pity on those in need; (and) that the constancy of the state lies in treating li as the guiding principle of government.  149He then continues with the following historical account, mirroring Ning Zhuangzi’s remonstrance above: 先君叔振,出⾃自⽂文王,晉祖唐叔,出⾃自武王,⽂文、︑武之功,實建諸姬。︒故⼆二王之嗣,世不廢親。︒今君棄之,不愛親也。︒晉公⼦子⽣生⼗〸十七年⽽而亡,卿材三⼈人從之,可謂賢矣,⽽而君蔑之,是不明賢也。︒謂晉公⼦子之亡,不可不憐也。︒比之賓客,不可不禮也。︒失此⼆二者,是不禮賓,不憐窮也。︒守天之聚,將施于宜。︒宜⽽而不施,聚必有闕。︒⽟玉帛酒食,猶糞⼟土也,愛糞⼟土以毀三常,失位⽽而闕聚,是之不難,無乃不可乎︖?君其圖之。︒ The former ruler Shu Zhen  was of the issue of King Wen; the progenitor of Jin, Tang Shu, 150was of the issue of King Wu. The success of Wen and Wu truly established the foundation for the Ji. And consequently the descendants and inheritors of these two kings do not discard their close relations. My lord is now doing away with this, and is not caring for his close relations. At the age of seventeen, this prince was exiled, and three of the men who follow with him are of the quality of great ministers and can truly be said to be worthies. Yet, my lord treating him with disdain is a failure to recognize worthiness. This so-called exiled prince of Jin cannot but be treated with sympathy. As he is your guest, you cannot but treat him with courtesy. To be without these two principles is to fail to treat guests with courtesy, and to fail to care for the needy. To preside over Heaven's concerns means to enact Rightness. If Rightness is not enacted, then there will insufficiencies among Heaven’s concerns. Jade, silk, liquor and food are like manure to fertilize the soil. Fall in love with this manure at the expense of these three principles and you will lose your position, and mobs will arrive at the palace. Surely it can not be anything but a disaster if my lord intends to act in this fashion.  151 One partial exception is the treatment of Chong’er by the King of Chu, but the correctness of this treatment is portrayed in an ambiguous way. Despite the Chu King’s wisdom in seeing the worthiness of Chong’er and his retinue, it remains possible that Chu is being  “Records of Jin” (Jinyu 晉語”), Guoyu 國語.149 Zhenduo of Cao 曹振鐸, one of King Wen of Zhou’s children, and the younger brother of the Duke of 150Zhou. Zhenduo was appointed lord over the Cao territory. He would have been of the Ji lineage (xing 性), but of the Cao sub-lineage shi (shi 氏), and of the line (zu 族) of King Wen, rather than of King Wu. “Records of Jin” (Jinyu 晉語”), Guoyu 國語.15193obliquely criticized for their encroachment on the Zhou king’s ritual prerogatives.  Chu’s 152treatment of Chong’er is described as follows: 楚成王以周禮享之,九獻,庭實旅百。︒公⼦子欲辭,⼦子犯曰:「天命也,君其饗之。︒亡⼈人⽽而國薦之,非敵⽽而君設之,非天,誰啟之⼼心!」 King Cheng of Chu presented him with a banquet in accordance with the ritual decorum of Zhou  toasting him nine times and setting out the array of sumptuary vessels and hundred 153offerings. Chong’er wanted to decline this treatment, but Zifan said to him, “This is Heaven’s mandate that my lord is feasted in this way. Although you are an exile, the state has officially welcomed you (as though you were a state guest), and although you are not of his rank, the ruler has laid out these offerings (as though to a lord). Whose will could this be expressing, if not Heaven’s?  154 In all three of these instances, li remains largely confined to the concept of courtesy, in terms similar to what we saw in the previous chapter. The instances of failures to adhere to the rules of ritual propriety are acts of clear rudeness in terms of direct personal interactions, or else failures to greet and host prestigious visitor in the correct ritual fashion. In the case of the example of the king of Chu, although he may have possibly overshot the bounds of propriety in his ritual greeting, the precise way in which he succeeds in being courteous is importantly described in conservative and specific terms: the laying out of sumptuary sets and offering of toasts. It is up to the authors of the respective narrative versions to draw out the moral lessons to be taken from what must have been a widely known historical account, and to explain how li relates to politics.    Since King Wu of Chu 楚武王 (d. 690), the rulers of the southern state of Chu had taken on the title of 152king. They were the first state to do so, and this was the justification for Duke Huan of Qi’s punitive campaign against them as the first Lord Protector. Or, alternatively, in accordance with the Rites of Zhou (Zhou li 周禮) text.153 “Records of Jin” (Jinyu 晉語”), Guoyu 國語.15494 What is important about the Guoyu account is how it embeds its discussion of li within the political structure of the Western Zhou state and the way that the territorial regions were first appointed to members of the king’s own immediate family. This structure is based on the ancestral lineage system and the Ji 姬 surname of the Zhou king. In each instance of rude treatment of Chong’er, an advisor attempts to explain to his ruler the kin relationship (qin 親) that connects their own state with that of Jin. The progenitors (zu 祖) of the Zhou states are mentioned alongside their place in the lineage structure, with the Ji family of the Zhou king listed first, then their issuance within the lineage segments (zu 族) of the particular kings, either Wen ⽂文 or Wu 武, and finally the lineage branches (shi 氏).  Explicit reference is also made by 155the Wey Prime Minister Ning Zhuangzi to the ancestral temple layout, when he notes “Kang Shu was enshrined to the left of King Wen, and Tang Shu was enshrined to the right of King Wu.”  156 The Guoyu is attempting to directly tie the relevance of ritualized enactments of courtesy to a larger political ideology based on the lineage system of the Zhou, and by extension to the ritual structure of the ancestral cult. This rhetorically places ritualized acts at the heart of a process of constructing tradition, and asserts that this ritual order must be maintained to ensure political stability. The particular version of tradition the Guoyu is arguing for was made up of the very elements of the political and social structure that were losing their relevance during the  For discussions on the history of the family in this period see Wang Lihua, Zhongguo jiating shi, Di yi 155juan: xian-Qin zhi Nanbeichao shiqi 中國家庭史第⼀一卷:先秦至南北朝時期 (Guangzhou: Guangdong renmin, 2007); Zhu Fenghan, Shang Zhou jiazu xingtai yanjiu 商周家族型態研究 (Tianjin: Tianjin chubanshe, 2004). See also Pulleyblank, “Ji 姬 and Jiang 姜: The Role of Exogamic Clans in the Organization of the Zhou Polity.” As Pulleyblank notes, many studies from China on the history of the family tend to use a Marxist historical framework, which carries with it certain teleological historical assumptions. For a discussion of the ancestral temple see Martin Kern, “Bronze Inscriptions.”15695Warring States period. This suggests some of the ways in which the assertion of li as part of a political theory was fraught. The practices of li derive much of their legitimacy from historical authority, and yet the entire political-social structure from which it derived its authority was waning.  Much of the political thought in Warring States China took place under the long shadow cast by the Western Zhou state, both in the imagination of Warring States thinkers and in terms of the actual institutions that formed the structure of the political system even after the formal elements of this system had ceased to be relevant. The Zhou conquest of the Shang state in c. 1045 BCE and the subsequent defeat of an uprising from the newly conquered Shang territories resulted in a system of authority with the Zhou king at the head, located in the traditional Zhou homeland along the Wei 渭 river, and with territorial commanderies in the eastern territories with appointed regional lords from the ruler’s family.  This seems to have relied on a system of 157ritualized semi-bureaucratic appointments that focused on the legitimate authority of the ruler being tied to his position at the ancestral temple in the Zhou heartland.  158 These ceremonies, and the authority of the Zhou ruling house along with it, are commemorated in the ritual inscriptions on the aesthetically impressive bronze vessels that were part of a broader ritualized system centred on veneration of patrilineal ancestors.   Our 159understanding of the Western Zhou ritual-political system is somewhat fragmentary, relying largely on bronze vessel inscriptions as well as later written sources, the earliest of which include  Li Feng, Landscape and Power in Early China: The Crisis and Fall of the Western Zhou, 1045 - 771 157BC (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2006). Li Feng, Bureaucracy and the State.158 See Falkenhausen, “Late Western Zhou Taste.”15996the Book of Odes (Shijing 詩經) and the Book of Documents (Shangshu 尚書). However, the arguments about political legitimacy and the structure of the ancestral temple that we piece together from these documents very likely represent the result of a series of changes towards the end of the Western Zhou period in the face of increasing political instability.  We also see 160indirect evidence of an attempt to re-orient the ritual-political system in the archaeological record of a late Western Zhou ritual reform. This apparent reform is shown in the disappearance of vessels used for holding liquor and an increased focus on vessels for sacrificial foods, an increased focus on clearly delineated sumptuary sets that indicated social and political ranking and privilege, and an increased focus on a simple and austere aesthetic in the bronze vessels.  If 161this reform occurred during the outset of the late Western Zhou period, then this would indicate it took shape during a period of political instability, perhaps a time when the legitimacy of the Zhou king was being challenged by powerful members of the aristocracy, and in the face of an ongoing and increasingly distressing military threat from foreign polities, particularly on the northwest frontier.  162 This instability would eventually result in a succession crisis and a major military defeat, with the so-called Western Rong 戎 conquering the Zhou capital in 771 BCE. The sacking of the Western Zhou capital and the subsequent move of the capital to the east would create a persistent sense of political turmoil. The Spring and Autumn period was marked by the disintegration of the  Kern, “Bronze Inscriptions”.160 Falkenhausen, Chinese Society in the Age of Confucius (1000-250 BC): The Archaeological   161Evidence (Los Angeles: Cotsen Institute of Archaeology, University of California), 49-50. See also, Rawson, Arthur M. Sackler Collections, Falkenhausen, “Late Western Zhou Taste.” Li, Landscape and Power.16297Zhou ruling lineage’s authority and centuries of self-destructive internecine war amongst the noble houses.  Simplifying these complex political and social changes, the result can be 163described as a thinning of out of the noble houses and a starker social gap opening up between the rulers of large territorial states and the increasingly prominent shi ⼠士 class of knight-scholars who were given much of the responsibility of managing the state apparatus.  The social, 164religious and political changes of the Spring and Autumn period were complex, and involved changes in the role of ancestral veneration in managing political and social relationships with both the living and the dead,  and consequently in the shape of the ritual-political nature of the 165state.  In the Guoyu example above, ritual acts were being conceptualized as enactments of a particular system of traditional political authority focused on ancestral veneration. This was part of a larger attempt seen in the Zuo zhuan and Guoyu texts to interpret political history through the lens of li, and so at least in part to present ritual performance as a means to reconstitute an ideal form of moral governance, based on the Western Zhou state. Because one of the most salient strategies employed to construct ritualized acts is the exertion of historical authority, this  Hsu, Cho-yun, Ancient China in Transition: An Analysis of Social Mobility, 722-222 B.C. (Stanford: 163Stanford University Press, 1965). See Falkenhausen, Age of Confucius, for the archaeological evidence of this widening social gap. See 164Pines, Enduring Empire, for a discussion of the shi class and their attempts to assert their power in the Warring States period. For analyses of the changing perception of the afterlife and the decreasing importance of ancestors see 165Falkenhausen, Age of Confucius; Mark Edward Lewis, Sanctioned Violence in Early China (New York: State University of New York Press, 1990). These ongoing changes would continue on into the Warring States period and are dramatically attested in the archaeological record: see John S. Major, "Characteristics of Late Chu Religion,” in Defining Chu: Image and Reality in Ancient China, ed. Constance Cook and John S. Major (Honolulu: University of Hawai’i Press, 1999), and Cook, Death in Ancient China: One Man’s Journey (Leiden: Brill, 2006).98placed ritual within a contentious space of political debate. This was particularly true for a theory of ritual focused on li, as this was unavoidably attached to notions of tradition.  The Guoyu text presents an example in which an already existing historical narrative is given greater significance through emphasis on historical authority, and the violation of notions of decorum are interpreted as a failure to understand and participate in the ancestral political-ritual system of governance asserted by Heaven itself. Guoyu draws the reader’s attention to li as specific ritualized enactments of a historically authoritative moral order. Xi Fuji and the Chu King represent the only clear example of people who enacted ritual decorum, in both cases through particular ritualized acts. Acts of ritual violation are the embodied indications of a failure to evoke and participate in this same ritual order; however, in the case of the Zuo the implications of li are much more subtly intertwined within the narratives than in the Guoyu where, for example, in the narrative of Chong’er, violations of li are very directly tied to the ancestral lineage structure of the Western Zhou state, and the familial bonds of the states are directly evoked. This tied li together with a clearly articulated narrative about the Zhou political state, and helped shore up the view that li was one of the primary constitutive elements tying together the Zhou people as they were surrounded by foreign enemies, and as state elites slaughtered each other through centuries of internecine conflict. Social Customs  The example from the Guoyu text shows an active attempt to draw a connection between the practices of li and the authoritative and historical structure of the Western State and its basis within the ancestral lineage system. In this example, the historical authority of these practices are 99used in an attempt to construct a historical narrative in which li is fundamental to the origins and structure of the Zhou state itself. In doing so, this created the possibility of arguing that violations of the rules of ritual decorum are inherently corrosive to the social and political order.  In contrast, we can see in discussions of the concept of “social customs,” su 俗, examples where a the reliance on historical authority to legitimize ritual practices becomes a point of rhetorical weakness for Confucian thinkers. At its very broadest, su simply denotes common or typical practice, and when part of the compound term shisu 世俗 it could simply mean “common practice” or simply “the present age.”  More specifically, su could convey meanings of 166“vulgar” customs, referring to the particular cultural practices of non-elites generally, or else the related concept of “local” customs, referring to variations of particular religious, cultural and social practices across different regions and territories; it could also be used to describe “foreign” or “barbarian” cultural practices, referring to the customs of peoples not considered related to the Huaxia 華夏, or “Chinese”, ethnicity connected to the Three Dynasties and the Zhou cultural sphere. In these ways, su was a term that allowed for the conceptualization of “culture” in the abstract, in a way that could contain normative value judgments by implying that the practices of su are vulgar, unrefined, or strange, but which could also describe cultural practices in a (relatively) neutral “anthropological” tone.  In the Annals of Lü Buwei we find some of these meanings of su, for example when reference is made to the “backward tongues” (fanshe 反⾆舌), “peculiar customs” (shusu 殊俗) and “strange practices” (yixi 異習) of the Man and Yi, a common metonym for neighbouring non- In the Mozi text, for example, the elites that are target of the text’s criticism are sometimes referred to 166simply as the “Gentlemen of the present age” (shisu zhi junzi 世俗之君⼦子).100Chinese polities and cultures.  In this same text, divergent social customs are presented as a 167problem that needs to be addressed by the moral instruction of the state ruler. For example, in this historical narrative of the kings of antiquity, this is presented as the key accomplishment of the sage-king Yu who did not achieve the full model of “kingship” later accomplished in the Zhou: 昔舜欲旗古今⽽而不成,既⾜足以成帝矣。︒禹欲帝⽽而不成,既⾜足以正殊俗矣。︒湯欲繼禹⽽而不成,既⾜足以服四荒矣。︒ Formerly, Shun desired to be a standard for antiquity and the present, but he was not successful although he was able to become a Sovereign (di 帝). Yu wanted to be a Sovereign but he was not successful although he was able to correct peculiar customs (zheng shusu 正殊俗). Tang desired to carry on the example of Yu, but he did not succeed although he was able to bring the wild lands of the four directions into submission.  168The rectification of social customs is presented as an important part of the civilizing political mission that the sage king of antiquity were attempting to accomplish. This relationship between political authority and the social customs of the state’s people is also apparent in its discussion of music. In this case, music is also a means of communicating moral and political instruction to the state’s populace: 故治世之⾳音安以樂,其政平也︔;亂世之⾳音怨以怒,其政乖也︔;亡國之⾳音悲以哀,其政險也。︒凡⾳音樂通乎政,⽽而移風平俗者也,俗定⽽而⾳音樂化之矣。︒故有道之世,觀其⾳音⽽而知其俗矣,觀其政⽽而知其主矣。︒故先王必託於⾳音樂以論其教。︒  Thus, the tones of an orderly age are peaceful and joyous because its policies are stable. The tones of a chaotic age are resentful and angry be cause its policies are perverse. The tones of a doomed state are sad and mournful because its policies are dangerous. It is a general principle that music is influenced by government and affected by customs. When customs are fixed, music adjusts itself to them. Thus, in an age that possesses the Dao one has only to observe its music to know its customs, to observe its customs to know its government, and observe its  Annals of Lü Buwei, “Gong ming” 功名.167 Translation from Knoblock and Riegel, Annals of Lü Buwei, 298.168101government to know its ruler. The former kings were, therefore, certain to rely on music as a means of professing their teachings.  169This passage is part of a discourse on the role of music in demonstrating the appropriate balance of the desires and emotions and so in shaping the moral disposition of the people — ideas that find both conceptual and textual parallels in the writing of Confucian thinker Xunzi and in the Record of Rites.  The Confucian rhetoric that shapes this brief essay on the importance of 170music suggests that su was seen by its authors to have moral consequences. These customs refer broadly to the social and ethical practices of the people, but these practices can potentially be strange, divergent or immoral. Similar ideas are once again expressed in Confucian terms in this following passage, where reform of “practices and customs” is directly tied to the virtues of rightness between ruler and minister and of the proper hierarchical sequence between father and son. In this case, these are words from Wuqi in conversation with Shang Wen : 171治四境之內,成馴教,變習俗,使君臣有義,⽗父⼦子有序,⼦子與我孰賢︖? For bringing order to everything within the four borders, perfecting training and instruction, reforming practices and customs, and causing ruler and ministers to interact according to principles of Rightness, and fathers and sons to interact according to the proper order, who is worthier, you or I?”  172 Translation from Knoblock and Riegel, Annals of Lü Buwei, 145.169 There are direct textual parallels between portions of this chapter and the “Record of Music” (Yueji 樂170記) chapter of the Record of Rites, and in Xunzi’s essay, “Discourse on Ritual” (Lilun 禮論) and less directly in Xunzi’s essay, “Discourse on Music” (Yuelun 樂論). Wuqi 吳起 was a legal reformer and putative author of the military treatise Wuzi 吳⼦子. See Sawyer, 171The Seven Military Classics of Ancient China (Boulder: Westview Press), 191-202. Shang Wen 商⽂文 was presumably a minister in the state of Wei 魏 where Wu had served for some time before going to the state of Chu. See Xu, Lüshi chunqiu jishi, 470. Translation, with emendations, from Knoblock and Riegel, Annals of Lü Buwei, 436.172102In the Annals of Yanzi (Yanzi Chunqiu 晏⼦子春秋) , su is also discussed in terms of the 173rectification of customs and the instructional role of the ruler, but in less overtly Confucian terms. In one case Yanzi provides his view on the way that the enlightened ruler should instruct the people: 古者百⾥里⽽而異習,千⾥里⽽而殊俗,故明王修道,⼀一民同俗。︒ In ancient times, every hundred li would find a strange practices and every thousand li would find peculiar customs. Therefore, the enlightened kings cultivated the Dao to unite the people and unify the customs.  174Elsewhere, when asked about the political methods of Lord Huan of Qi, the first Lord Protector, Yanzi gives an answer that includes the assertion that he “governed by reforming customs” (bian su yi zheng 變俗以政). In this case, the reforming of customs represents one of the bases of the civilizing force that resulted in the original formation of the political state.  The Annals of Lü Buwei also uses the concept of divergent social customs as an analogy to make a separate point about the variability of political practices over time. The sage kings of the past, it is argued, employed government practices that were appropriate for their time; the past can therefore be instructive but the policies of the past cannot be directly adopted into the new situation of the present. The text gives the following analogy to explain: 殊俗之民,有似於此。︒其所為欲同,其所為欲異。︒⼜⼝口惛之命不愉,若⾈舟⾞車衣冠滋味聲⾊色之不同,⼈人以⾃自是,反以相誹。︒ The divergent customs of the various peoples is analogous to this. Since their boats, carts, clothes, cuisine, music, and ideas of feminine beauty are not the same, and their desires are the  This text is difficult to date correctly, and contains multiple layers of authorship. It is, however, likely 173to be at its core made up of writing that predates the Qin dynasty. For a discussion see Milburn, The Spring and Autumn Annals of Master Yan (Leiden: Brill, 2016), 3-67; Durrant, “Yen tzu ch’un ch’iu,” in Early Chinese Texts: A Bibliographical Guide, ed. Michael Loewe (Berkeley: Society for the Study of Early China & The Institute of East Asian Studies, University of California, 1993). Annals of Yanzi, Inner chapters, “Questions” (Wen 問) I.18.174103same, what they do in response to these desires is different.  The mode of speech of one 175group is not understandable to the other, so each group thinks itself correct and condemns the practices of others.  176In this way, su was a term that could be employed to discuss the variability of human cultural practices and social customs, sometimes in terms that were somewhat “neutral,” even if they continued to carry assumptions about the superiority of certain cultural forms. This anthropological framework of su and its conceptual power in thinking about the origins and developments of cultural practices in the abstract is particularly apparent in the way that the term is employed in one particularly compelling example from the Mozi text. In the extant “Moderation in Funerals” (Jie zang 節葬) chapter, the text presents a defence to a critique from the defenders of traditional elite burial and mourning practices: 今執厚葬久喪者⾔言曰:「厚葬久喪,果非聖王之道,夫胡說中國之君⼦子,為⽽而不已,操⽽而不擇哉︖?」⼦子墨⼦子曰:「此所謂便其習⽽而義其俗者也。︒」 Now the arguments of those who adhere to elaborate funerals and prolonged mourning say: “If elaborate funerals and prolonged mourning are really not the Way of the sage kings, how do you account for the fact that gentlemen of the central states have not ceased their practice of them and have not abandoned their importance?” Master Mozi said: “This is what is called considering one’s practices suitable (bian qi xi 便其習) and one’s customs right (yi qi su 義其俗).”  177The main point being made here by the author of this chapter is that what one views as historical tradition can often be little more than the inertia of what one is accustomed to. More notable is the final line, in which the author argues that the continuing on of traditions also comes down to viewing one’s customs as “right,” (yi 義). This is notable because what the text’s authors are  This passage appears to be corrupted, but Knoblock and Riegel’s interpretation here seems reasonable. 175See Xu, Lüshi chunqiu jishi 呂氏春秋集釋, 390. Translation from Knoblock and Riegel, Annals, 368.176 Translation, with emendations, from Johnston, Mozi, 227.177104talking about here, in terms of burial customs, might be discussed by Confucian writers in terms of ritual propriety, while the Mozi text frames these practices as the more normatively neutral concept of “social customs.”  One of the major political reforms that the Mohists sought to achieve was the reduction of certain elite practices of extravagant spending, and this involved a critical focus on musical performances as well as lavish funerals and extended mourning periods. While the Mohists continued to defend strict distinctions of social hierarchy and political authority, they condemned the excessive and luxurious markers of social capital that for many Confucian thinkers represented the refined and sophisticated ritual and aesthetic culture of the Three Dynasties. The Mohists sought to rhetorically divest these particular practices of their historical authority by showing how they were historically contingent and arbitrary in their details.  In the extant “Moderation of Funerals” chapter, the text goes on to answer its critics by providing an explanation of what is meant by “considering one’s habits convenient and one’s customs right.” This can be seen in the following account of historical practices of burial amongst foreign cultures: 昔者越之東有輆沐之國者,其長⼦子⽣生,則解⽽而食之。︒謂之『宜弟』︔;其⼤大⽗父死,負其⼤大母⽽而棄之,曰鬼妻不可與居處。︒此上以為政,下以為俗,為⽽而不已,操⽽而不擇,則此豈實仁義之道哉︖?此所謂便其習⽽而義其俗者也。︒楚之南有炎⼈人國者,其親戚死朽其⾁肉⽽而棄之,然後埋其骨,乃成為孝⼦子。︒秦之西有儀渠之國者,其親戚死,聚柴薪⽽而焚之,燻上,謂之登遐,然後成為孝⼦子。︒此上以為政,下以為俗,為⽽而不已,操⽽而不擇,則此豈實仁義之道哉︖?此所謂便其習⽽而義其俗者也。︒ Formerly, to the east of Yue, there was the country of the Kaimu. When a first son was born, but died in infancy, he would be eaten.   They called this ‘fitting for the younger brother’. 178 The precise practice being described here is unclear, but I have interpreted this in light of the fact that 178this passage is describing funeral and mourning practices, resulting in a different rendering than Johnston. In two parallel versions of this passage, jie 解 appears as xian 鮮. See Wu, Mozi jiaozhu 墨⼦子校注, 289 n.147 for a discussion.105When the paternal grandfather died, they carried the maternal grandmother away and abandoned her, saying: ‘We cannot live with a ghost’s wife’. If, above, these things are taken to be government practice and, below, they are taken to be customs, continued to be put into practice, implemented and not discarded, then are they the way of true benevolence and righteousness?  This is what is called considering one’s habits suitable and one’s customs righteous.”  179楚之南有炎⼈人國者,其親戚死朽其⾁肉⽽而棄之,然後埋其骨,乃成為孝⼦子。︒秦之西有儀渠之國者,其親戚死,聚柴薪⽽而焚之,燻上,謂之登遐,然後成為孝⼦子。︒此上以為政,下以為俗,為⽽而不已,操⽽而不擇,則此豈實仁義之道哉︖?此所謂便其習⽽而義其俗者也. To the south of Chu there is the country of the Yan people. When their parents die, they allow the flesh to rot and discard it. Afterwards they bury the bones, taking this to be [the mark of a] filial son. To the west of Qin there is the country of the Yiqu [people]. When their parents die, they gather up kindling and firewood and burn them, and, as the smoke rises, say they are rising far off. After that they have fulfilled their roles as filial sons. If, above, these things are taken to be government practice and, below, they are taken to be customs, and are carried out and not stopped, implemented and not discarded, then are they the Way of true benevolence and righteousness?  This is what is called ‘[considering] one’s practices suitable and one’s customs right.’  180The text concludes by considering the relative viewpoints of, first, the three foreign cultures in question, and second the “Gentlemen of the central states” (zhongguo zhi junzi 中國之君⼦子): 若以此若三國者觀之,則亦猶薄矣。︒若以中國之君⼦子觀之,則亦猶厚矣。︒如彼則⼤大厚,如此則⼤大薄,然則葬埋之有節矣。︒ 故衣食者,⼈人之⽣生利也,然且猶尚有節︔;葬埋者,⼈人之死利也,夫何獨無節於此乎。︒ If we consider this matter by examining these three states, then [their practices] are indeed meagre!  Examining the Gentlemen of the central states, [their practices] are indeed excessive!   On that side there is the very excessive, and on this side there is the very meagre; and so there is such a thing as moderating funerals and burials. Thus, clothing and food are benefits for people who are living, but moderation is still valued with regard to such things. Funerals and burials are benefits for people who are dead, so why is there no moderation only in regard to such things?  181 Translation, with emendations, from Johnston, Mozi, 227.179 Translation, with emendations, from Johnston, Mozi, 229.180 Translation, with emendations, from Johnston, Mozi, 229.181106What is notable about this argument is the way that it is presented as a kind of anthropological argument, contrasting the social customs of foreign peoples with the practices of the Gentlemen of the central states. The point of the text is to show that these practices, which were presumably being used to deliberately horrify the text’s audience, also carry the weight of historical authority within their own locale. The “rightness” of a particular set of social customs should, for the authors of this text, be determined by judging, in Mohist terminology, how a particular practice increases benefit (li 利) and reduces harm (hai 害) for the state. The correct social practice is laid out in the chapter’s conclusion in precise terms: ⼦子墨⼦子制為葬埋之法曰:「棺三⼨寸,⾜足以朽骨︔;衣三領,⾜足以朽⾁肉︔;掘地之深,下無菹漏,氣無發洩於上,壟⾜足以期其所,則⽌止矣。︒哭往哭來,反從事乎衣食之財,佴乎祭祀,以致孝於親。︒故曰⼦子墨⼦子之法,不失死⽣生之利者,此也。︒ The rules which Master Mozi formulates for the conduct of funerals and burials state: “A coffin  should  be  three cun [thick], sufficient for rotting bones. Burial garments should be of three layers, sufficient for rotting flesh. The depth of the ground dug out should be such that it does not reach water below, and it does not let vapours escape above. The burial mound should be sufficient to make the place [of burial] recognisable and that is all. There should be weeping going to and from [the funeral], but then there should be a return to the matters of clothing and food. There should be such attention to sacrifices as accords with being filial to parents.” Thus it is said that this is what constitutes Master Mozi’s rules of not losing the benefits (li 利) to either the living or to the dead.  182While the Mozi text is not devoid of appeals to historical authority, the ideal version of history tends to be of much deeper antiquity than that privileged by the Confucians,  and the value of 183that authority is based on the way in which the very ancient kings were able to bring about social  Translation, with emendations, from Johnston, Mozi, 230-31.182 See Brown, “Mozi’s Remaking of Ancient Authority,” in The Mozi as an Evolving Text: Different 183Voices in Early Chinese Thought, ed. Carine Defoort and Nicolas Standaert (Leiden: Brill, 2013). Brown notes, relying on that the appearance in writing of a developing idea of a mythical and remote past of “Sage kings” (Shengwang 聖王) seems to be a Warring States development, and may even be an innovation of the Mohists. Prior appeals to the past tended to refer to a more recent time period.107order and stability without devolving into the excesses of later ages. The framework of this rhetorical strategy reveals how the authoritative weight of tradition lies in contested territory. Innovation and Cultural Technology  As has been richly explored by Michael Puett, the discourse in early China’s intellectual tradition demonstrated an “ambivalence” towards the very concept of innovation. As he notes: Time and again the Western Zhou model of posing culture and the state as constructed objects, forged through a line of transmission beginning with Heaven and continuing through the succession of Zhou kings, is the position from which, or against which, thinkers approached the issue.  184Puett demonstrates that this understanding of cultural practices as “constructed” forms the framework within which any intellectual debate over cultural practices was bound to take place. In the case of ritualized practices, the historical authority that could be strategically asserted was necessarily bound within this ambivalence over cultural construction and innovation. Attempts to argue against the authority of such practices could therefore make use of the constructed nature of cultural practices to justify further innovation based on the particular needs of the time and place. While the Mozi would assert the historical precedent of deep antiquity to justify its own political reforms, other thinkers would not feel so beholden to the past.  To further look at the political stakes involved in a debate over the historical authority of traditional practices, we will examine two passages that could best be described as “persuasive narratives.” First, the opening chapter of the Book of Lord Shang, and second a chapter from the Intrigues of the Warring States (Zhanguo ce 戰國策). Although these two narratives are in  Puett, Ambivalence of Creation, 38.184108different texts, they are remarkably similar in style and tone, and may both either belong to the same genre of writing or perhaps even share authorship. The connection to Shang Yang found in the first passage may have been sufficient for its compiler to feel that it belonged in the Book of Lord Shang, and although it serves as a compelling opening to the text it is significantly different from the rest of that volume in style and format. Both of these passages may in fact be examples of what Crump describes as a school of rhetoric,  providing textual examples of argumentative 185skills being employed successfully in a court setting. Both of these persuasive narratives employ a similar argument, and both are involved in debates in which the need for political reform is being argued by famous proponents against opponents who assert the historical authority of accepted cultural practices in order to argue against such reforms.  The example from the Book of Lord Shang is the opening chapter, “Reforming Standards” (Bian fa 便法). This chapter speaks directly to the question of cultural practices as an obstacle to political reform. In it, a discussion takes place between Duke Xiao 孝 of Qin (r. 361 - 338 BCE) and his three Great Ministers (dafu ⼤大夫): Shang Yang 商鞅, Gan Long ⽢甘龍 and Du Zhi 杜摯. This conversation represents what, even as early as the Warring States period, has been historically viewed as a political turning point. Like the southern state of Chu, the western state of Qin was a frontier region whose geographic distance from the core regions of the Eastern Zhou provided it with certain economic and strategic advantages, but made it somewhat of a cultural outsider.  Shang Yang is given much of the credit for the sweeping political reforms 186 Crump, Chan-Kuo Ts’e (Oxford: Clarendon Press), 15-22.185 By the late Warring States period, Qin’s economic and military strength was undeniable. Confucian 186thinker Xunzi would travel there and was forced to acknowledge its accomplishments, despite its problematic lack of Ru scholars (Xunzi, “Strengthening the State” (Qiang guo 彊國).109that Qin undertook, many of which must have seemed at odds with the structural relationship between individual families and the state, and traditional hierarchical relationships. These reforms were not unique to Qin but do appear to have been most drastically implemented there, and perhaps also in Chu, and were also perhaps best represented by Qin given their increasing military success towards the end of the Warring States period.  The discussion in this chapter centres on Shang Yang’s attempts to persuade Duke Xiao to ignore his anxiety over upsetting tradition. His argument centres on several important issues: changes to the affairs of the times (shishi zhi bian 世事之變), the root of rectifying standards (zhengfa zhi ben 正法之本), and the Dao of employing the common people (shimin zhi dao 使民之道). This reflects the political anxiety over employing the common people that is seen throughout Book of Lord Shang. Duke Xiao ultimately hopes to push forward new reforms, but is anxious that these large-scale reforms will be seen as a threat to tradition, possibly attracting opposition and criticism.  Duke Xiao commences by stating: 代⽴立不忘社稷,君之道也︔;錯法務明主長,臣之⾏行也。︒今吾欲變法以治,更禮以教百姓,恐天下之議我也。︒ The Way of the ruler is to not forget the altars of earth and grain when taking his place; the role of the minister is to implement the laws and put into practice the wisdom of his ruler. Now, I wish to alter the standards in order to govern and reform the rites in order to instruct the hundred surnames, but I fear that All-under-Heaven will condemn me.  187Shang Yang answers that the Duke should not feel any need to be constrained by tradition: 法者,所以愛民也︔;禮者,所以便事也。︒是以聖⼈人苟可以強國,不法其故︔;苟可以利民,不循其禮。︒  Book of Lord Shang, “Reforming Standards” (Bian fa 便法).187110The purpose of the laws is to care for the people; the purpose of the rites is to make affairs suitable. Therefore, if the sage is able to strengthen the state, he does not (need to) model himself on antiquity; if he is able to benefit the people, he does not (need to) follow the rites.  188 As with the Mohist attack on lavish funerals, this account of Shang Yang’s persuasion of Duke Xiao focuses on the arbitrary nature of any tradition. Each generation confronts its own particular challenges, and as Puett has demonstrated, there was broad acknowledgement in the Warring States era that these traditions were at some point constructed and have changed over time. The target of this text is the very notion of antiquity carrying any kind of authoritative weight — a view that would come to mark much of Reformist doctrine, and which would become a central facet of Han Fei’s critique of Confucianism: 前世不同教,何古之法︖?帝王不相復,何禮之循︖?伏羲神農教⽽而不誅,⿈黃帝堯舜誅⽽而不怒,及至⽂文武,各當時⽽而⽴立法,因事⽽而制禮。︒禮法以時⽽而定,制令各順其宜,兵甲器備各便其⽤用。︒臣故曰:『治世不⼀一道,便國不必法古。︒』湯武之王也,不循古⽽而興︔;殷夏之滅也,不易禮⽽而亡。︒然則反古者未可必非,循禮者未⾜足多是也。︒君無疑矣。︒ Those of former times did not have the same doctrines, and so which antiquity should be the model? Sovereigns and kings did not follow each others’ (models), and so which rites should be followed? Fu Xi and Shennong instructed without punishments; The Yellow Emperor, Yao and Shun punished without anger; up to Kings Wen and Wu each (ruler) acted in accordance to his own time when establishing their laws and followed their own situations when instituting the rites. The rites and laws were fixed in accordance to their time; each rule and decree was done in correspondence to what was suitable; weapons and armour, tools and equipment were each suitable for their use. Your minister therefore says, “There is not one Way to govern an age, nor any need to follow the models of antiquity when benefitting the state.” When Tang and Wu rose to become kings, they did not achieve their positions by following antiquity; and when the Yin and Xia collapsed, they did not fail by changing the rites. Based on this, opposing antiquity does not warrant condemnation, nor is following the rites sufficient to heap praise. My lord should have no doubts (about his plans).  189 Book of Lord Shang, “Reforming Standards” (Bian fa 便法).188 Book of Lord Shang, “Reforming Standards” (Bian fa 便法).189111 This account of Shang Yang’s persuasion of Duke Xiao functions mainly as a means of showcasing a particular rhetorical means for attacking traditionalist appeals to antiquity. This suggests a number of possibilities about the intellectual environment of Warring States China. First, there is the fact that the text is portrayed as a persuasive conversation between a wise minister and his ruler. From the outset it is established that the ruler is in fact favourable towards political reform, but that the main issue holding him back is his concern over his ritual responsibilities. This, in turn, comes down to an anxiety over the possibility that his reformist actions will result in him being condemned. This is very much in line with the kind of general anxiety over employing the people that we find throughout the Book of Lord Shang. Political reform is potentially held back by the fact that there are people who still cling to a sense of tradition and who might be unwilling to support reforms that seem to threaten the inherited values and practices of antiquity as they perceived them. What is actually at stake in this particular story is the important policy attributed to the Qin state’s cultivation of new territories. Once Duke Xiao has finally been persuaded by Shang Yang, the text declares: “Thereupon, in consequence, he issued the order to bring waste lands under cultivation” (於是遂出墾草令).  The second passage in question is the very similar discussion from the Intrigues of the Warring States. If we do not presume that these texts were intended simply as examples of disputation technique, then there is the possibility that these represent the remnant of a particular line of thought that sought to defend political reform against traditionalist critics. It is certainly the case that both passages not only provide examples of successful rhetoric, but also provide a very clear ideological stance towards the question of tradition and the need for political reform. This passage concerns a conversation between King Wuling 武靈 of Zhao 趙 (r. c. 325-298 112BCE) and his uncle, and centres on the famous controversy over the decision to adopt the dress of the Hu 胡 people and the military technique of shooting bows from horseback. Bordering China’s northern frontier along the Central Asian steppe, the state of Zhao would have had first hand experience with the military strength of the nomadic cultures of this region. Their ability to move and retreat swiftly, combined with the ability to fire arrows from horseback would give these nomadic militaries a major advantage in battles with the sedentary cultures around them. After unification, the Chinese empire would continue to be plagued by nomadic military power throughout its imperial history and would continue to try to make use of this power for themselves, both through the adoption of military techniques and the absorption of nomads into their own military.  Unfortunately for King Wuling, adopting a new military strategy is not a simple affair. It would require a number of complex social and political innovations, involving the perfection of a difficult technique and the efficient and wide-spread training of military troops, as well as the production of military tools such as weapons and horses. As Chinese statesmen would learn in the Han, the military technique of shooting bows from horseback relied on an entire socio-economic and cultural lifestyle that could not be easily adopted by the sedentary Chinese state. This connection between the adoption of a specific military technique with a cultural and economic system is important because the particular problem for King Wuling that would ultimately become inscribed in the narrative historiography of China was precisely the issue of 113customs and tradition; and the controversy, as we now understand it, would ultimately centre on the unlikely military technology of trousers.  190 When the King ordered the men of his state to adopt Hu clothing to facilitate these new military techniques, he appears to have immediately encountered resistance. The clothing of an elite Chinese gentleman, which included heavy robes with loose sleeves, was especially ill suited to the needs of nomadic horse-riding and archery, but it also had clear ties to people’s sense of cultural self and tradition, and presumably also a sense of cultured refinement. The resistance faced by King Wuling is perhaps the clearest early example of the stark cultural gap that stood between the sedentary Central States and their pastoral nomadic neighbours. A full account of this crisis is presented as what we must assume is an imagined discourse in the Intrigues of the Warring States. This narrative portrays a debate between King Wuling and his uncle, Gongzi Cheng. King Wuling has ordered the men at court to wear this nomadic clothing in order to provide an example to the rest of the state, but his uncle is ashamed to do so. We can treat the basic incident and the clear political difficulties presented by King Wuling’s decision to adopt Hu clothing as real issues that occurred in the political court of Zhao, but the way in which this problem was expressed in Intrigues of the Warring States cannot be assumed to be a genuine record of the conversation between Wuling and his uncle. The account given in Intrigues of the   The history of trousers is intimately tied to the development of the pastoral nomadic lifestyle in Inner 190Asia. This article of clothing can best be understood as a technological development offering a number of benefits to the overall social practices involved in this mode of life, making long-term horse riding more comfortable and providing advantages to the military techniques of combat from horse-back. Understood within the wider scope of the technological innovations that people adopt in order to facilitate their needs, trousers must be understood not simply as an arbitrary cultural peculiarity but as an “essential part of the tool kit with which humans improve their physical qualities,” Ulrike Beck et al., “The Invention of Trousers and its Likely Affiliation with Horseback Riding and Mobility: A Case Study of Late 2nd Millennium BC Finds from Turfan in Eastern Central Asia,” Quaternary International 348 (2014).114Warring States is a compelling example of the way that controversies of tradition and ritual propriety could have real consequences in political affairs.  King Wuling describes his own actions as “setting an instructive example by changing his manner of dress” (zuo jiao yi fu 作教易服), and Gongzi Cheng’s failure to follow suit threatens his authority. As he says to his uncle: 家聽於親,國聽於君,古今之公⾏行也︔;⼦子不反親,臣不逆主,先王之通誼也。︒今寡⼈人作教易服,⽽而叔不服,吾恐天下議之也。︒夫制國有常,⽽而利民為本︔;從政有經,⽽而令⾏行為上。︒故明德在於論賤,⾏行政在於信貴。︒  Since antiquity, it has been (the standard of) public conduct that a family listens to their kin, and a state to their ruler. It was the pervasive standard of the kings of antiquity that a son should not disobey his kin nor a minister his lord. Now, this lowly one wishes to enact a doctrine of altering our dress, and yet my uncle will not obey it. I fear that All-under-Heaven will criticize me. There is a constant (principle) to administering the state, and at its root is bringing benefit to the people; there is a guiding thread to practicing government, and at its head is enacting decrees. Therefore, one’s brilliant Virtue relies on the subservience of inferiors, and the enacting of government relies on the trust of the nobility.  191His uncle’s wish to cling to the historical authority of his own practices has hindered the conduct of government. Gongzi Cheng attempts to argue that, to the contrary, it is the king’s insult to tradition and consequence violation of the people’s will that has caused the problem: 臣聞之,中國者,聰明睿知之所居也,萬物財⽤用之所聚也,賢聖之所教也,仁義之所施也,詩書禮樂之所⽤用也,異敏技藝之所試也,遠⽅方之所觀赴也,蠻夷之所義⾏行也。︒今王釋西,⽽而襲遠⽅方之服,變古之教,易古之道,逆⼈人之⼼心,畔學者,離中國,臣愿⼤大王圖之。︒ Your servant has heard that the central states is the place where intelligence and knowledge is be found, where the myriad forms of wealth gather, where the worthies and sages conduct their teachings, where Humaneness and Rightness are practiced, where the Odes, Histories, Rites and Music are put to use, where cunning and diverse cultural arts are plied, upon which those of distant foreign lands can gaze up, and from which the Man and Yi learn to practice Righteousness. And now my King would discard this and take on the dress of distant foreign places, reform the teachings of that ancients, alter the Way of antiquity, oppose the will of the  Adapted from Crump, Chan-Kuo Ts’e, 297.191115people, depart from the learned, and distance himself from the central states. It is the hope of your minister that his great King will think on this.  192The king gives a lengthy response, and the points he makes are important to this study, and so will be considered in full. Opening with words that are nearly identical to those used by Shang Yang in the “Reforming the Laws” chapter of Book of Lord Shang, he first notes: 夫服者,所以便⽤用也︔;禮者,所以便事也。︒是以聖⼈人觀其鄉⽽而順宜,因其事⽽而制禮,所以利其民⽽而厚其國也。︒ (The nature of) clothing is based on what is suitable for use; (the nature of) ritual propriety is based on what is suitable for affairs (of state). For this reason, the sages observed their region and then followed what was suitable, and instituted the rites in response to the affair (of state). By this they sought to benefit the people and strengthen their states.  193To this he adds examples of variant customs amongst other regions and peoples, which are notable for their strangeness: 被髪⽂文身,錯臂左衽,甌越之民也。︒⿊黑齒雕題,鯷冠秫縫,⼤大吳之國也。︒禮服不同,其便⼀一也。︒是以鄉異⽽而⽤用變,事異⽽而處易。︒是故聖⼈人茍可以利其民,不⼀一其⽤用︔;果可以便其事,不同其禮。︒儒者⼀一師⽽而禮異, 中國同俗⽽而教離,又況山⾕谷之便乎︖? To wear the hair unbound and tattoo the body, decorate the arms with pigments and fasten their clothes on the left is (the custom) of the people of Ouyue. To blacken the teeth, engrave the forehead and wear caps of sheepskin is the (custom) in the state of the Da Wu. Their rituals (li 禮) and clothing differ, but are united in that they are suitable (to their location). For this reason, if the county varies the practice will change, if the affairs vary the place will change. Thus, if it was to the benefit of the people, the sages would avoid (unnecessarily) unifying practices; if the consequence was to make affairs suitable, the sages would avoid (unnecessarily) making rites the same. The Ru scholars had one teacher, and yet their rites differ, the central states have the same customs and yet their teachings differ, and is not not even more true for what is suitable to the conditions of those in the mountains and those in the valleys?  194 Adapted from Crump, Chan-Kuo Ts’e, 298.192 Adapted from Crump, Chan-Kuo Ts’e, 298.193 Adapted from Crump, Chan-Kuo Ts’e, 299.194116Notably, this passage points out the Confucians (Ru scholars) for specific critique, noting that despite their insistence of following the correct rules of ritual propriety, after the death of Confucius even his disciples failed to be consistent in their practices. Each state also differs in their practices, despite their shared history, and the cultural differences between highland people and valley people are, finally, the starkest of all. The king’s speech concludes with a very compelling point: 故去就之變,知者不能⼀一︔;遠近之服,賢聖不能同。︒窮鄉多異,曲學多辯,不知不疑,異於⼰己⽽而不非者,公於求善也。︒今卿之所⾔言者,俗也。︒吾之所⾔言者,所以制俗也。︒ Thus, even the knowledgable cannot unite the changes from the past until now, and even a worthy sage cannot unify the practices of clothing of distant and near places. The ruder the village the more it finds strange in the world outside and the backwoods scholar discovers food for debate in everything. But show me a man who does not suspect something simply because he is ignorant of it, one who condemns nothing merely because it is strange to him and you show me a man who works for the common good. My uncle has been speaking of customs, while I have been speaking of the regulation of customs.  195There are two issues to be kept in mind here: the first is the actual historical event in which King Wuling ordered the adoption of Hu clothing, and the second is the narrative account provided here which employs this event in order to make a larger rhetorical point about the historically contingent nature of cultural practices. The two cannot be entirely separated as they both relate to the problems faced by state reformers who wished to reform cultural practices for instrumental purposes. In the latter case, an argument is presented within a presumably fictional debate over the role, history and value of tradition. At the centre of this debate is the permissibility of a ruler introducing reforms to the state that could be interpreted as an affront to the traditional values of the populace. King Wuling’s words here sum up what is at stake in this debate when he asserts that “what you speak of is custom (su 俗). What I speak of is the regulation of customs (zhi su 制 Adapted from Crump, Chan-Kuo Ts’e, 299.195117俗).” This is the clearest example in which the historical contingency of culture is asserted as part of a rhetorical argument justifying government interference in the practices of the state’s populace. Regional variation of common practice is explained not simply by a contrast between the establishment of rules of ritual propriety by the Three Ages, but also by the fact that the particular value of common customs lies in what is “suitable” or “convenient” (bian 便) to the particular needs of a time or place. In a variant of what may have been a common expression at the time, or may at the very least have become a kind of convenient motto for political reformists, King Wuling states: “(The nature of) clothing is based on what is suitable for use; (the nature of) ritual propriety is based on what is suitable for affairs (of state).”  In terms of ritual practice, the adoption of appropriate clothing is a pervasive strategy for the construction of ritual acts, drawing on the elements of formalism to assert a social value or position. In the case of early China, drawing on these elements of formalism and meaning in the use of clothing embroils the ritual actor into a larger arena of meaning that also encompasses issues of ethnicity and tradition.  In the debate between King Wuling and his uncle, we find 196that the ritual values ascribed to clothing create a tension between the historical authority of traditional practices and the instrument value of Hu clothing, whose tight sleeves and trousers are necessary for the adoption of nomadic military techniques. This would present a genuine threat to Confucian practices, whose rituals were legitimized by claims of historical authority.  In the Analects we can see that clothing is an important and persistent element of the larger picture of 196ritual propriety that this text portrays. Most relevant to this chapter, we have Confucius’s claim that were it not for the famed statesman Guan Zhong, “would all be wearing our hair loose and fastening our garments on the left,” i.e. the practices of barbarian cultures. Analects 14.17, translation from Slingerland, Analects, 161. The effortless ability to choose and wear ritually appropriate clothing also appears in Book 10 of the Analects, e.g. 10.6, 10.7 and 10.19.118Conclusion  What these narratives demonstrate is that the ritualized acts of li exerted a sense of historical authority through the strategic use of formalism. However, a clear sense that these traditions were constructed to suit particular purposes placed them within a problematic and contested arena. For proponents of a Confucian interpretation of li, the strategic construction of ritualized acts was tied to historical precedents, and this resulted in a limited scope for cultural innovation. A re-imagination of this history seen in Guoyu shows that ritual could also be employed to construct a new, idealized concept of tradition. While the Guoyu shows how depictions of ritual could be used to construct a concept of history, the attacks on the validity of Confucian practices also reveal a weakness in these assertions of historical authority. For political reformists, the problem was reversed. For them, pushing through political reforms could also mean pushing against notions of traditions. The need shown in the Mozi and the two persuasive narratives to logically and rhetorically attack the relevance of historical authority suggests that this was a genuine problem for rulers who wished to reorganize the state. Even the adoption of social technologies such as the clothing of nomads, which facilitated new military techniques, was complicated by the historical authority tied to the ritual elements of clothing.  These accounts show how ritual existed in a political arena in which forms of cultural technology and practices were deeply contentious. Implementing them could cause tensions, and statesmen were not in agreement over how to navigate these disputed issues. For primitivists and individualists, abjuring tradition could be a performative necessity to adhere to their philosophy, but political reformists were faced with the political challenge of ensuring participation in their state enterprises. Neither the Mohists nor the statesmen depicted in the persuasive narratives 119could simply renounce this concept of civilization or the sources of historical authority that were tied to the performances of ritual acts, because they also needed to ensure that their orders and political changes would actually be carried out. They presumably would not want to risk excessive anger or disagreement among their family, the members of the state apparatus or the common people.  Culture and ritual were issues of importance to statesmen because they represented particular areas in which reforms could be stymied by people’s unwillingness to have their established customs changed or threatened. On one hand, this gave the arguments in favour of li, as found in the Guodian manuscripts, an advantage in these debates. These values and practices were already attached to the sense of ethnic identity of elites in the Zhou cultural sphere, and the ritualized practices of courtesy, burial and sacrifice already contained an authoritative position even if critics of the Confucians felt that they took their pedantic concern with these practices too far. On the other hand, the waning authority of these practices in the face of sweeping social and political changes also put the Confucians in a weak position. The historically contingent nature of these practices, made all the more obvious by these changes, created a rhetorical opening for those who would push through further reforms to the political and social structure of the state. The concept of su was particular valuable for this rhetorical undoing of historical precedent, not least because discussions of common social customs already presumed that these were diverse across territories and time, and that the civilizing mission of the sage kings required in large part the reforming of these vulgar customs, and the unification of cultural practices. As these practices were considered from a more sophisticated theoretical perspective, the whole suite of 120cultural conventions such as clothing and social relations were potentially open to question, and ripe for innovation.  197 As will be shown in Chapter Four of this study, the Guodian manuscripts would also need to assert that the customs being discussed were uniquely adjusted in order to work with the natural tendencies of human nature. This was particularly true in light of the fact that one of the main alternatives to the use of ritual to achieve the goals of political authority and public order was the establishment of consistent and clearly manifested penal regulations. For many statesmen the use of these regulations was an appealing alternative to the Confucian emphasis on refined cultural practices. This issue is discussed in the following chapter, which focuses on a final contextual issue before proceeding to Chapter Four, which will examine the Guodian manuscripts in detail. The anxieties presented in the persuasive narratives above, over how to effectively employ the common people and ensure that orders are carried out throughout the state was one of the most important problematics of political theory in the Warring States period. This can be seen very clearly in the Guodian manuscripts, which focus primarily on this problem of political authority, but in order to understand what was truly at stake in this debate we must more fully understand the alternative tools for cultivating this authority that were being argued for in the Warring States.  Indeed, as Martin Kern has shown convincingly, the Qin state would engage in its own sophisticated 197reinvention of sacrificial ritual as part of a public relations campaign to assert their authority over the core Zhou cultural regions in the east. Kern, The Stele Inscriptions of Ch'in Shih-huang. 121Chapter 3: Authority and the Law Introduction   For the state rulers and political reformers of the Warring States period, one of the central and ongoing problematics of statecraft was the “usage” or “employment” (yong ⽤用) of the people, and the ability to enact (xing ⾏行) high-level ruler decrees (ling 令). Top-level decision-making and policy designs would eventually encounter the problem of social participation and resistance, as well as the multitude of logistical and pragmatic difficulties entailed in implementing theoretical ideas in the real world. While the persuasive narratives examined in the previous chapter appear to indicate a specific concern over the problem of cultural practices, they also suggest an anxiety over the problem of overcoming resistance to political reforms more generally. This attachment to tradition represents only one example in which a resistance to the directives of the state’s ruler could take shape and threaten his authority. Put broadly, this anxiety over authority comes down to the question of  how a small governing elite can manage to effect their will over a large region made up of individuals and groups who each have their own particular motivations, desires and intentions. Finding ways to solve this problem was one of the main intellectual driving forces of this period, and designing solutions to this complex problem would require thinking about it in abstract terms; the result was a newly developed conceptual vocabulary for analyzing and debating political authority. Of particular importance would be ways of thinking about how to channel, control and direct people’s behaviour.  This problem of achieving political authority is one of the central questions that the “Ritual Authority Manuscripts” attempt to address, and it is towards this anxiety over authority 122that they address their argument for the power of ritual psychology. It is argued that this psychological feature of human nature needs to be understood if state rulers hope to acquire true authority over their population, and it is on this basis that ritual practices were justified as effective political tools. It is, therefore, necessary to have a clear understanding of the development of theories of authority in the Warring States period in order to more fully understand the particular context within which the Guodian manuscripts’ theory of ritual psychology was meant to be persuasive.  The precise challenges related to the development and maintenance of political authority were shaped by the increasing centralization of territorial states during this time.  These states 198developed clearly delineated borders and an increasingly centralized bureaucracy in order to maintain, order and draw resources from this defined political region. As was discussed in Chapter Two of this study, social stratification was also simplified with a smaller and more authoritative and autocratic central elite gaining greater authority, and with the state increasingly being managed by shi ⼠士 bureaucrats. These changes in the nature of political authority and the structure of the state apparatus resulted in new ideas about how to assert power, and how to define and structure political relationships between rulers and their ministers. As we have seen in the Annals of Lü Buwei, the concept of li was one way of theorizing and asserting these new political dynamics at court. In addition, a moral vocabulary about the proper emotional values to be developed between rulers and their ministers would take shape with discussions of specific  Bruce Trigger, Early Civilizations: Ancient Egypt in Context (Cairo: The American University in Cairo 198Press, 2001), 10-13, defines a territorial state as one in which a centralized bureaucracy is able to draw taxes in from a large territorial region, with layers of regional administrations to effect this control. Although Trigger uses this term to describe the Shang and Zhou states, Li Feng, Bureaucracy and the State, 271-299, makes a compelling argument that it was not until the fifth to third centuries BCE that this term can be used to accurately describe China.123virtues such as “loyalty” (zhong 忠),  and political arguments about the need for a system of 199meritocratic appointment based on the skills or moral qualities of valuable ministers or “worthies” (xian 賢). In contrast to these arguments about the value of worthy ministers and the attempts to assert the importance of bureaucratic ministers in running the state, we also see the development of new ways to conceptualize and consolidate the power of the state’s autocratic, hereditary ruler.  Perhaps nowhere is this argument for consolidating centralized authority clearer than in the Book of Lord Shang. This text demonstrates a persistent concern over the tendency of the people to draw resources away from the state through their individual whims and disinterest in obeying state directives. This is put most clearly in the chapter “Weakening the People” (Ruo min 弱民), which opens by asserting that “When the people are weak, the state is strong” (min ruo gou qiang 民弱國強).  In this chapter, the danger lies in giving the people the space to 200acquire their own wills and pursue their own desires. When they are “weak” as a force of potential resistance, they can be put to use; but when their own intentions or wills are allowed to develop, they become “strong” and recalcitrant. The entire fine-tuned state apparatus required to fill the ranks of the military and also feed, clothe, arm, motivate and administer them is constantly in danger of collapse. The gradual dissipation of the state’s resources and collective  Goldin, “When Zhong 忠 Does not Mean ‘Loyalty’”; Cook, “The Changing Role of the Minister in the 199Warring States,” in Ideology of Power and Power of Ideology in Early China, ed. Yuri Pines et al. (Leiden: Brill, 2015). See also Slingerland, “The Problem of Moral Spontaneity” for a discussion of how the Confucian Guodian manuscripts conceptualize this relationship through metaphoric kinship relationships, a point that will be further discussed in Chapter Four of this study. The Book of Lord Shang, “Weakening the People” (Ruo min 弱民).200124will ultimately result in a weakened military, and when this occurs there are enemy states ready to crush the state’s armies in the battlefield.  The state is described as being managed by three primary functions. If those who are meant to fulfill these functions are given too much liberty to pursue their own personal ends, the result is six specific forms of parasitic behaviour: 農、︑商、︑官三者,國之常官也。︒三官者⽣生蝨官者六:曰歲,曰食,曰美,曰好,曰志,曰⾏行,六者有樸必削。︒ Farming, trade and government are the three constant offices of the state. There are six kinds of parasite that these three offices give rise to: they are called care for the aged and the consumption of food, desire for beautiful things and personal predilections, willfulness and principled conduct. If these six parasites are allowed to flourish, (the state) will inevitably become weak.  201These six parasites refer to particular kinds of individuals within three major classes: the agricultural class, merchants, and government officials. When they are allowed free reign to pursue their own desires and agendas, they become a drain on the state without offering anything back to it. The specific nature of how these parasitic individuals arise depends on the class, and in the case of government officials, the problem arises when they are appointed to office but not put to use. Left with too much free reign, they pursue their own interests, weaken the state and ultimately weaken the strength of its military. The cultivated practices of Ru scholars, for example, would have no place in the state apparatus; their interest in self-cultivation would represent their development into state parasites, using up state resources without contributing anything to the administrative system required to maintain the military. This suggests at least one  The Book of Lord Shang, “Weakening the People.” A parallel version of this passage is also found in 201the “Dissipation of Strength” (Qu qiang 去強) chapter of the same text.125level on which the stakes were indeed high for Confucian thinkers to defend the value of their ideas to the administration of the state.  This concern over ensuring that the increasingly centralized states could effectively control and manage its population and direct its resources towards the focused goal of military strength resulted in theories about political authority that largely relied on coercive methods of punishments and rewards as forms of incentive. This system of punitive incentives relied on clear state directives and administrative standards that allowed much of the administrative decision-making to be offloaded on to seemingly impersonal processes that adhered to pre-defined rules and regulations. Conceptualizing the state apparatus as a smoothly-operating mechanism was an intellectual innovation that made it possible to imagine solutions to this problem of managing a large territory full of potentially willful individuals. This particular solution to the problem of political authority was another potent threat to Confucian ideas, because people’s emotional and ethical qualities were effectively removed from the equations. In the view of these thinkers who focused of punitive methods of channeling people’s behaviour, people’s psychology only needed to be considered to the limited extent of their own self-interest. The basic incentives of punishments and rewards were deemed enough to control the state. Theories of Authority  This approach to political authority in which the centralized power of the territorial state’s autocratic ruler was being emphasized has traditionally been described as “Legalism” (Fajia 法家), a system of thought that has historically been viewed as the ideological opponents of the Confucians. While the Confucians emphasized the moral instruction of the 126people by a ruler who also served as a moral paragon, the Legalists supposedly presented an amoral approach to government that demanded the harsh application of punishments and rewards based on inflexible rules and prohibitions. This traditional account of ideological camps is also tied in with the history of the early Chinese empire. The Qin state has been closely tied to the history of Legalism due to the political approaches put into practice by its most famous Prime Ministers, Shang Yang 商鞅 (d. 338 BCE) and Li Si 李斯 (d. 208 BCE), as well as the interest shown in the ideas of the political philosopher Han Fei 韓非 (d. 233 BCE) by Qin’s first emperor, Ying Zheng 嬴政 (d. 210 BCE). This connection was also given a more concrete form through the narrative constructed around the idea of the Qin state by the rulers, historians and intellectuals of the Han empire that would follow the Qin’s brief tenure.  202 Fully understanding the history of these conceptual approaches to authority requires carefully extricating the development of these ideas from the narratives that surround them. In fact, there is nothing to suggest that in the Warring States there was a discrete “school” devoted to the “law” (fa 法), and it is almost certainly the case that we owe this particular classification to Han dynasty historian Sima Tan 司⾺馬談 who retroactively classified the various thinkers of the Warring States era into the taxonomy of “The six houses of thought” (Liujia 六家).  The term 203“Legalism” can be taken as a useful heuristic to refer to those thinkers whose political theories emphasized coercive authority and increased centralization, but the limitations of this heuristic  This issue is discussed in several articles in Yuri Pines et al. (eds.), Birth of an Empire: The State of 202Qin Revisited (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2014). Paul R. Goldin, “Persistent Misconceptions about Chinese ‘Legalism.” Journal of Chinese Philosophy 20338.1 (2011), 88.127should also be kept in mind;  the danger of an alluring heuristic is that it can create the 204impression that the heavy lifting of analysis has already been done, but in the case of Legalism this does not fully appear to be the case. This makes it necessary to provide at least a brief account of the term Fajia and to probe the history of the theories of coercive authority that have been associated with it, as well as to question if “law” is in fact a reasonable translation of fa, as the English translation “Legalism” may also have misleading implications.  The intellectual lineage of Legalism is usually traced back to early reformers such as Li Kui 李悝 (fl. c. 350 BCE?), a minister in the state of Wei 魏 and supposed compiler of the Classic of Law (Fajing 法經), a lost legal code that now exists only in apocryphal form, and Shang Yang, who supposedly brought Li Kui’s code with him to the state of Qin where he was employed as Prime Minister. Shang Yang is most commonly given credit for instituting the reforms in Qin under the rulership of Duke Xiao that allowed for the state’s eventual military success over its rival in the late Warring States. Little is known about the specifics of Shang Yang’s reforms, and we are left to piece together an idea from later writings, such as Han historian Sima Qian’s 司⾺馬遷 accounts, as well as from the Book of Lord Shang. Although Legalism is traditionally connected to these statesmen, if we want to understand the roots of the conceptual and philosophical ideas associated with Legalism we must look to people such as Shen Dao 慎到 (fl. ca. 300 BCE?), Shen Buhai 申不害 (d. 337 BCE) and finally Han Fei, the aristocrat from the state of Han 韓 who is often credited as the syncretist whose writings represent the culmination of Legalist thought. These are presumably the “Legalists” that A.F.P.  Goldin, “Legalism,” argues that the term does not even offer much heuristic value, and ultimately 204obfuscates more than it clarifies.128Hulsewé is referencing when he notes in a passing remark that “in spite of their preoccupation with law, hardly a legal rule is to be found in their voluminous writings.”  205 The term fa in its most general sense would better be translated as “standards” or “model,”  and it is in this sense that the  political theorists Shen Dao and Shen Buhai appear to 206employ the term. In this sense, it is used as part of an argument for creating consistent “models” or “standards” of behaviour and job performance, and employing consistent mechanisms of punishments and rewards to ensure that people conform to them. Rather than viewing this as a concept of “law” it it would better be described, as Goldin puts it, as “an impersonal administrative technique of determining rewards and punishments in accordance with a subject’s true merit.”  The need to create a consistent standard of behaviour for both the common people 207and members of the state apparatus to was one of the quintessential features of this strand of political theory. For Shen Dao,  the primary virtue of the administrative technique of fa is that 208it is consistent and impersonal, making it possible to take the individual whims of the ruler out of the equation. This is contrasted this with the “private” (si 私) desires and discretions of the ruler, which can have a corrupting influence. The danger of injecting the private into the administrative process is that it will lead to resentment, as the meting out of punishments and rewards is seen to  A.F.P. Hulsewé, “Ch’in and Han Law,” in The Cambridge History of China. Volume I: The Ch’in and 205Han Empires, 221 B.C. - A.D. 220, ed. Denis Twitchett and Michael Loewe (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.1986), 526. Hulsewé, “Ch’in and Han Law,” 526, for example, argues that fa might most commonly be translated 206as “norm” or “model.” Goldin, “Legalism,” 92.207 The Shenzi fragments are a reconstruction of passages and ideas widely believed to have originally 208been written by Shen Dao. For a discussion of the process of this reconstruction, see Thompson, The Shen Tzu Fragments.129be personal.  For Han Fei, who was clearly influenced by Shen Dao’s ideas, this leads to the 209additional danger that when the meting out of punishments becomes based on the ruler’s own personal preferences, this endangers his authority by giving court figures insights into how to influence him and gain his trust. Han Fei was particularly obsessed with the danger of power blocs forming that could lead to state rulers being overruled or overthrown. Although Shen Dao and Han Fei differ in the ways that they interpret the precise dangers inherent to the ruler’s private discretion being employed, they do appear to agree that the value of impersonal standards is primarily administrative.  Theorizing about the nature of political authority would provide the means for thinking about the complex problem of administering a large state apparatus made up of individuals, and also for maintaining the ruler’s position in the face of potential rebellion or court intrigue. Two terms in particular were used to express this concept of authority: quan 權, which in its most literal sense might be translated as “weight,” and so which can suggest the inherent “heft” of a ruler’s authority, and shi 勢, a term that most literally means “situation,” and which can be used to indicate the authority conferred by the “situational advantage” conferred simply by possessing a position of authority.  This notion of authority, as given simply by social position, is 210contrasted with one’s own personal merits or inherent “worthiness” (xian 賢).  As Shen Dao 211notes, it is the happenstance of one’s political position that determines their power in society, not their inherent moral qualities or abilities. Finally, political power and authority could be  Yang Soon-ja, “Shen Dao’s Own Voice in the Shenzi Fragments,” Dao:10 (2011), 201, and Harris, 209Shenzi Fragments, 26-28 and 31-36. For a brief discussion on shi, see Harris, Shenzi Fragments, 56-61.210 See Yang Soon-ja, “Shen Dao,” 193-194 for a discussion of these terms.211130expressed in terms of one’s might (wei 威) or charismatic virtue (de 德), a term that conveys very specific moral and religious connotations when employed by Confucian thinkers, but not necessarily so when employed in other political theory writings.  212 One of the key intellectual insights made by Shen Dao derives from his pragmatic perspective on the nature of power and the state. In this view, ethical considerations and the will of Heaven are detached from political realities, a fact made most explicit in Shen Dao’s discussion of situational power. Shen argues that dynamics and hierarchies of power are exerted by the simple nature of political authority, and that the ethical conduct or personal abilities of the people involved do not enter into the actual dynamics of power. As he states, in a passage that would later be quoted by Han Fei: 故騰蛇遊霧,⾶飛龍乘雲,雲罷霧霽,與蚯蚓同,則失其所乘也。︒故賢⽽而屈於不肖者,權輕也︔;不肖⽽而服於賢者,位尊也.... 由此觀之,賢不⾜足以服不肖,⽽而勢位⾜足以屈賢矣... 身不肖⽽而令⾏行者,得助於眾也 So, the winged snake travels on the mists, and the flying dragon rides the clouds. But when the clouds are gone and mists dissipate, then they become the same as worms, because they have lost that upon which they were riding. Thus, when person of worth bends before one who is unworthy, this is because his authority (quan 權) is light; that one who is unworthy is able to make a worthy submit to him is out of respect for his position (wei 位)... Looking at it from this viewpoint, being worthy is not sufficient to make the masses bow down, but situational power and status are sufficient to make worthies bend… So, those who are not renowned but still decide matters are able to do so because their authority is weighty. If a crossbow is weak, but its bolt flies high, it is because the bolt rides on the wind. If one is not worthy, and yet one’s orders are carried out, it is because one has obtained the assistance of the masses.  213For Shen Dao, the solution to political turmoil is not to seek out worthy people to fill government offices, but to ensure that the state apparatus runs based on consistent and clear standards. In this  For example, in his translation of the Shenzi fragments where de clearly does not have moral 212implications, Harris translates it as “potency” or “potent.” Harris, Shenzi Fragments, 106. Translation, with emendations, from Harris, Shenzi Fragments, 108.213131way, members of the bureaucracy are more like artisans who each learns to master their own particular and learnable task through rote.  More important than personal virtuosity are 214“standards” (fa 法) — rules and metrics that instruct the individual member of the state apparatus in how to perform their own role. This concept would also be adopted by Han Fei in his own syncretic political theory.  Within this larger framework of conceptualized political authority, the virtue of “standards” is that they provide a means of depersonalizing some of the ruler’s decision-making processes and clarifying and communicating expectations for ministers and bureaucratic office-holders. This view of the state as a machine in which individual members of its apparatus are cogs each working at his own particular job highlights what would be called, in Weberian terms, a rationalizing process, and it clearly forms one of the primary administrative requirements for a centralized and at least partially bureaucratized system of government. This system of standards was fundamentally at odds with certain elements of the Confucian view of ritual psychology. This is largely because the view of human dispositions portrayed in the Shenzi fragments, and at least implied in The Book of Lord Shang, is that human incentives as relatively straightforward and based mainly on self-interest. The Shenzi fragments are particularly clear that government practices should adhere to human nature, but only insofar as self-interest is a reliable and universal tendency that can be used to the advantage of state rulers: 天道因則⼤大,化則細。︒因也者,因⼈人之情也。︒⼈人莫不⾃自為也,化⽽而使之為我,則莫可得⽽而⽤用矣。︒  This is noted in Fragments 17-18. See Harris, Fragments, 109. See Lothar Ledderose, Ten Thousand 214Things: Module and Mass Production in Chinese Art (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2000), and Anthony J. Barbieri-Low, Artisans in Early Imperial China (Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2007), for a clearer understanding of the place of artisans in early Chinese society.132One who adheres to the Way of Heaven will be great, and one who tries to alter it will be insignificant. To “adhere” means to adhere to people’s dispositions (qing 情). Among people there is no-one who does not act in their own self-interest. If you (try and) change them and make them act in your interest, there will be no-one whom you will be able to employ (yong ⽤用).  215The way to control people is not through developing a sense of personal loyalty,  but to give 216people a reason to obey you through salaries and emoluments. To “employ” the people requires a ruler to “employ” people’s own self-interest, a much more reliable system of ensuring political authority, and one that is less likely to introduce feelings of resentment within the interpersonal dynamics of the political class. This passage also directly attacks the premise of personal self-cultivation, or the inculcation of ethical feelings as a factor in government. This opposition to the premise of altering people’s characters appears to be a direct attack to the Confucian view of personal moral changes as being a fundamental element of achieving political success. Constructing Walls and Securing Locks  Shen Dao’s theory of political authority approached the question of employing people and ensuring orders were enacted that was based on making use of people’s self-interest. From this perspective, people’s psychological dispositions only needed to be taken into account sufficiently to develop a system that would clarify the standards for each bureaucratic position and ensure that whoever held that position would realize the benefits of correctly adhering to them. This theory of power represented one major strand of thought that sought to find solutions to the problem of political centralization that marked this period, and an early example that takes  Shenzi fragments 28-29.215 Loyalty is discussed in Shenzi fragments 46-52. See Harris, Fragments, 115-118.216133a similar if, arguably less “cynical” approach is the political theory of the Mohists. Mohist political theory represents an early example of an attempt to construct a systematic theory of political power, although, unlike Shen Dao, the Mozi text grounds its theory in moralistic terms and an emphasis on the role of Heaven and ghosts in establishing political authority.  In the synoptic “Exalting Worthiness” (Shang xian 尚賢) and “Exalting Unity” (Shang tong 尚同) chapters, we can see the beginning of a proposed system of meritocracy relying on offices hearing accounts of the qualities of those subordinate to them as a means for the ruler to determine who is worthy of employing in office. In the “Exalting Worthiness” chapter, it is argued that this system of meritocracy would actually function by encouraging good behaviour, and the basis for this system of behavioural control is described with the following analogy, which opens by rhetorically asking why this meritocratic system results in people’s behaviour changing for the better: 是其故何也︖?曰:上之所以使下者,⼀一物也,下之所以事上者,⼀一術也。︒譬之富者有⾼高牆深宮,牆⽴立既,謹上為鑿⼀一⾨門,有盜⼈人入,闔其⾃自入⽽而求之,盜其無⾃自出。︒是其故何也︖?則上得要也。︒ What is the reason for this? I say it is that there was only one principle by which superiors commanded their subordinates, and only one method by which subordinates served their superiors.  It is like the rich man who builds a high wall surrounding his house. When the 217wall is complete, he is sure to make only a single entry gate so, when robbers enter, he can close off the entrance and pursue them and they have no way out. Why is this so? It is because the superior man secures the key point.  218From this view of basic incentivization, the best way to alter and control people’s behaviour is to channel them into a narrow set of available choices and to clearly advertise the benefits of doing  Johnston translates wu 物 as “standard” and shu 術 as “path,” see Johnston, Mozi, 56 n14.217 Translation, with emendations, from Johnston, Mozi, 57.218134so. This could be done through large rewards to entice quality ministers, as was the case for the Mohists, or with the additional incentive of punishments that would befall anyone who failed to adhere to these standards. This concept of behavioural control works by constraining people’s available options but also clearly communicating to them in direct and straightforward terms what is expected of them and what sorts of behaviours will result in their rising through the political ranks. Here, the description is largely in terms of state administration and the best means for members of the state apparatus to succeed; however, we can presume that this system would also cascade into lower levels of the society as well. This means that this view of managing people’s behaviour would also have implications for concepts of public order and maintaining control throughout the territory down to the village level.  This view is expressed even more clearly in the political theory texts that can now be found in the Guanzi compendium. This collection of texts, named after the famous Spring and Autumn period minister of Qi, Guan Zhong, is a mixed bag of works, the majority of which are likely connected to the Jixia 稷下 Academic centres that were patronized by the Qi rulers during the Warring States.  Although this anthology does not have a unifying theme, there is a core of 219political theory texts that do appear to have shared a common approach and ideology.  In his 220 For a survey of scholarship on the Jixia Academies see Andrew Meyer, “The Altars of the Soil and 219Grain are Closer than Kin 社稷戚於親: The Qi 齊 Model of Intellectual Participation and the Jixia 㮨下 Patronage Community”, Early China 33/34: 37-99 and Oliver Weingarten, “Debates around Jixia: Argument and Intertextuality in Warring States Writings Associated with Qi,” Journal of the American Oriental Society 135.2. The texts examined here are ones that I believe can be dated to the late Warring States period. Some 220works of this anthology are almost certainly from the Han, and have not been examined here. For discussions on the Guanzi text see, W. Allyn Rickett, Guanzi: Political, Economic and Philosophical Essays from Early China (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1985), 3-50, and “Kuan tzu,” in Early Chinese Texts: A Bibliographical Guide, ed. Michael Loewe (Berkeley: Society for the Study of Early China & The Institute of East Asian Studies, University of California, 1993).135discussion of the evolution of theories of coercive rulership, Scott Cook notes the following passage from the “Eight Points of Observation” (Baguan 八觀) chapter: 故形勢不得為非,則姦邪之⼈人愨愿。︒禁罰威嚴,則簡慢之⼈人整齊。︒憲令著明,則蠻夷之⼈人不敢犯。︒賞慶信必,則有功者勸。︒教訓習俗者眾,則君民化變⽽而不⾃自知也。︒是故明君在上位,刑省罰寡,非可刑⽽而不刑,非可罪⽽而不罪也。︒明君者,閉其⾨門,塞其塗,弇其跡,使民毋由接於淫非之地。︒是以民之道正⾏行善也若性然。︒故罪罰寡⽽而民以治矣。︒ Thus if the lay of circumstances is such that people are unable to do wrong, then the wicked and depraved will become honest and sincere. If prohibitions and penalties are awesome and severe, then the indolent and negligent will be put in order. If the statutes and commands are prominent and clear, then the rough and barbarous  will not dare violate them. If prizes and 221rewards are assured and invariable then those with merit will be encouraged. If those instructed and habituated in [proper] customs are numerous, then the ruler's people will gradually transform without knowing it. For this reason, when an enlightened ruler occupies the supreme position and punishments are lessened and penalties few, this is not because [people] deserve to be punished and yet are not, or that they deserve to be incriminated and yet are not. The enlightened ruler is one who shuts the gate, blocks the road, and covers the tracks, ensuring the people will have no routes to lead them to the land of transgressions and wrongs. Because of this, the people will come to walk the proper paths and practice goodness as if it were in their natures to do so. Thus crimes and penalties will be few and the people will thereby be well ordered.  222What we should note about this passage is the way that it employs a very similar analogy to the Mozi’s story about the rich man’s walls. This approach also parallels what Shen Dao describes as the self-interested (ziwei ⾃自為) tendency of people. Clarifying expectations has the effect of revealing the path of ideal behaviour. In a sense, people make the “voluntary” decision to act in the way desired by state rulers, because the consequences of failing to do so are made clear, as are the personal benefits of making the correct choice. For the increasingly centralized theory of political practice that is seen in the writings of people like Shen Dao and those influenced by  Rickett translates this more literally as, “If the statutes and orders are clear, [even] the Man 蠻 and Yi 221夷 barbarians will not dare violate them,” Rickett Guanzi, 226. Translation by Cook, “Coercive Rulership”, 422.222136him, such as Han Fei, the implementation of clear standards of administrative practice, or fa 法, allows the government to operate in a way that is increasingly free of chaotic and inconsistent individual whims. Because it is systematic, it also does not rely on discovering the “worthy” virtuosos described by the Mohists and Confucians in their idealized conceptualization of a meritocracy. In the “Shepherding the People” (Mu min 牧民) chapter of the Guanzi  this point 223is framed in terms of clarifying precisely what actions lead to the starkest of punishments and which result in personal gain:  錯國於不傾之地,積於不涸之倉,藏於不竭之府,下令於流⽔水之原,使民於不爭之官,明必死之路,開必得之⾨門奧隊. Place your state upon a foundation that does not tilt, accumulate your (grain) in granaries that do not deplete, and keep your [wealth] in storehouses that do not run out. Issue your orders down like the wellspring of a flowing stream, and command the common people with offices that do not contend. Make clear the road to certain death, and open up the gates to certain gain.  224 These passages are focused on establishing public order all the way down from the ruler to the village-level, and it is argued that the state will not flourish unless this public order is pervasive at every level of society. This can be seen very clearly in the “Eight Points of Observation,” where the ideal state of public order is clearly described: ⼤大城不可以不完,郭周不可以外通,⾥里域不可以橫通。︒閭閈不可以毋闔。︒宮垣關閉,不可以不修。︒故⼤大城不完,則亂賊之⼈人謀。︒郭周外通,則姦遁踰越者作。︒⾥里域橫通,則攘奪竊盜者不⽌止。︒閭閈無闔,外內交通,則男女無別。︒宮垣不備,關閉不固,雖有良貨,不能守也。︒ The main city wall must be well constructed, the suburban walls impenetrable, village boundaries secure from all sides, gates kept closed, and residential walls and door locks kept in good repair. The reason is that if the main walls are not well constructed, rebels and brigands will plot to make trouble. If suburban walls can be penetrated, evil fugitives and  This chapter is also highlighted by Cook in “Coercive Rulership.”223 Adapted from Rickett, Guanzi, 55.224137trespassers will abound. If village boundaries can be crossed, thieves and robbers will not be stopped. If gates are not kept closed and there are passages in and out, men and women will not be kept separated. If residential walls are not solid and locks are not secure, even though people may have rich possessions, they will not be able to protect them.  225The overarching theme of this chapter is that the ruler must be kept apprised of state affairs in his realm at all levels — from the village all the way up to the behaviour of court officials and finally even beyond the borders of his own state, in terms of inter-state relations. The demands of increased centralization required a theory of statecraft in which the ruler could be certain that the behaviour of every element of his state be kept in check, so that there was no potential for political chaos or turbulence to arise, and that a steady flow of the all-important resources of agricultural goods and a mobilized population of corvée labour and military conscripts would not be interrupted. Public order is expressed in terms of not only personal security from thieves, robbers, fugitives and trespassers but also in terms of the sexual separation of men and women, a point that was discussed in Chapter One of this study.  In this view, social order is tenuous, and thieves, robbers and rebels can arise when care is not taken and the moral order decays such that men and women interact inappropriately. This concern with moral order is persistent in these texts, with illicit sexual interactions as a common indication of moral decay, perhaps even as a kind of metonym for public disorder. The “Cultivating Authority” (Quan xiu 權修) chapter also presents a useful metric for determining social disorder: 商賈在朝,則貨財上流︔;婦⾔言⼈人事,則賞罰不信︔;男女無別,則民無廉恥. If merchants and traders are received at court, goods and wealth will flow upward [in the form of bribes]. If women have a voice in the affairs of men, rewards and punishments will not be  Translation from Rickett, Guanzi, 226.225138reliable. If men and women are not segregated, the people will have neither a sense of integrity nor a sense of shame.  226The “Establishing Government” (Li zheng ⽴立政) chapter has more to say about the basic question of ensuring social order, in a tone very much along the same lines as the “Eight Points of Observation.” Villages represent potential hotbeds for disorder, and because they are also the farthest away from the eyes of the ruler there needs to be a mechanism in place to ensure that order is kept: 築障塞匿,⼀一道路,博出入,審閭閈,慎筦鍵,筦藏于⾥里尉。︒置閭有司,以時開閉。︒閭有司觀出入者,以復于⾥里尉。︒凡出入不時,衣服不中,圈屬群徒,不順於常者,閭有司⾒見之,復無時。︒若在長家⼦子弟臣妾屬役賓客,則⾥里尉以譙于游宗,游宗以譙于什伍,什伍以譙于長家,譙敬⽽而勿復。︒⼀一再則宥,三則不赦。︒ Set up strong points and close off [the approaches to villages] with barricades. Let there be but a single road [leading into each village], and let [people] leave or enter only one at a time. Let the village gates be watched and careful attention paid to keys and locks. The keys shall be kept by the village commandant, and a gatekeeper shall be appointed to open and close the gates at the proper time. Let the gatekeeper observe those who come and go in order to report on them to the village commandant. All cases of leaving or entering at improper times, wearing improper clothing, or members of households or their retainers not conforming to the accepted norms shall be reported by the gatekeeper immediately, no matter what the time. If [such irregularities] involve the sons, younger brothers, male or female slaves, retainers or guests of the head of a household, the village commandant shall warn the clan elder of the circuit. / The clan elder shall [in turn] warn [the leader] of the group of ten or five who shall [accordingly] warn the head of the household.  227 Available historical sources cannot confirm how thoroughly and pervasive this theory was put into practice during the Warring States period, but it does seem likely that this basic structure of political authority and control was something that was becoming increasingly common, and was certainly in place in the Qin state in some form. This structure includes the mutual responsibility system of the household units of fives and tens, and we can presume that  Translation from Rickett, Guanzi, 95.226 Translation from Rickett, Guanzi, 104.227139specific offices were needed to answer to those above them. The state was divided into smaller manageable administrative districts in which villages and households are broken down into the units of five and ten that watch each other based on a mutual responsibility system, with word being passed up the chain of command on whether or not individuals and families are adhering to rules of conduct that range from filial piety to the wearing of appropriate clothing, in accordance to one’s place in the state hierarchy. Although many of these administrative practices must presumably have grown out of earlier political structures, the Warring States period is marked by an increased concern with the ruler’s direct control over these issues, and with developing political institutions and practices to make this centralized control possible.  If we were to consider this political theory in Foucauldian terms, we might consider this a kind of village panopticon: a system in which the average person is made fully aware of the “automatic functioning of power,”  through clear instruction of the correct forms of behaviour, 228and a knowledge of the constant gaze of their own neighbours for whom any infraction within the mutual responsibility system could mean disaster for their own selves and immediate family. Foucault was speaking of the system of power and discipline that was developed in eighteenth century Europe, and which functioned because of its invisible and omnipresent nature. This is something that was not achieved in early imperial or pre-imperial China; nevertheless, the political writings of this period are marked by a very clear attempt to understand and make use of the psychological dispositions of people in order to effect more constant and thorough power over them by the ruler and his highest ministers. A key term in this system of political authority is the effect of an awesome “might” (wei 威). Knowledge of the invariability and extremity of  Michel Foucault, Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison, trans. Alan Sheridan (New York: 228Vintage Books, 1997), 201.140these punishments was intended, in many of these political writings, to weigh so heavily on the minds of the populace that only the most daring and incorrigible would dare to disobey them. The panoptic nature of this form of political authority comes from the clear promulgation of these rules as an attempt to constrain and redirect the actions of the people, as shown by the examples above of “making clear the road to certain death”, and the Mozi’s metaphor of the rich man’s compound with only one gate. Punishments and Prohibitions  These theories of political authority, particularly the promulgation of laws and the employment of punishments and rewards to control the behaviour of the state populace, were grounded within real administrative institutions, and so in order to understand the political and social framework within which these debates occurred it is necessary to consider the legal system of early China. The strict application of punishments and rewards required the centralization and standardization of specific rules of conduct and actual administrative figures to conduct this system. On this level, the description of Fajia theorists as “Legalists” does have merit, because the way that these standards of behaviour were actually enforced was through the writing and promulgation of actual laws. These laws applied to both state administrative figures, to ensure that they adhered to correct standards of professional behaviour, and to the broader populace, to ensure both public order and obedience to state directives. The way that laws were being conceptualized could not be clearly detached from this concept of standardizations, and the way that the law was applied does appear to have been largely directed towards the goal of controlling people’s behaviour in the terms described in the political theory texts above. 141 There are several issues that potentially cloud our understanding of the development of law in early China and its role in the political arena. The first is the term “law” itself, for which, as A.F.P. Hulsewé notes, no unambiguous corresponding term will be found in early Chinese.  229We must be careful not to carry into our discussion of early Chinese law any concept of it in the sense that the “law” existed to protect individuals from the power of the state or to limit the power of state rulers.  This is to say, “law” does not appear to have existed as a clear abstract 230notion that was designed for the purpose of ensuring justice for the individual. The second issue is the distinction between two meanings of fa 法. On the one hand there is the application of the law, with all of its complex bureaucratic offices and records and which played out in the real world in ways that are difficult to reconstruct from available historical sources; on the other hand, there are writings about the cultivation and maintenance of political authority within which legal promulgations are discussed in principle but not in detail. The political theory texts that were discussed above represent attempts to construct abstracted concepts that made it possible to think about the state in theoretical terms.  To clarify these issues, we should first consider the available vocabulary of terms that could be used to refer to either specific “laws” or potentially to “the law” in the abstract. There are some specific examples where fa appears to be used to refer to specific laws. For example, the “Fixing Allotments” (Ding fen 定分) chapter of the Book of Lord Shang speaks repeatedly of fa 法 and ling 令. These term could be translated broadly as “standards and decrees” if we  Hulsewé, “Ch’in and Han Law,” 526.229 Michael Loewe, “The Laws of 186 BCE”, in China’s Early Empires: A Re-appraisal, ed. Michael 230Nylan and Michael Loewe (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010), 253.142assume nothing more specific was intended, but the particular use of the term within the chapter itself suggests that it may be referring more narrowly to written statutes and ordinances, which would more commonly be written as xian 憲 or else lü 律, the latter being the term that would eventually become standard under the Qin. This seems to be the meaning in the following passage: 公問於公孫鞅曰:「法令以當時⽴立之者,明旦欲使天下之吏民,皆明知⽽而⽤用之如⼀一⽽而無私,奈何︖?」 The Duke questioned Gong-sun Yang, saying: 'Supposing that one established laws (fa 法) and decrees today, and wished that, tomorrow, all government servants and people, throughout the empire, should understand them clearly and apply them, so that all should be as one, and should have no selfish intentions - how can one bring this about?  231The chapter argues that political authority and order cannot be achieved without fa and ling, and it is made clear that this practice of standards (or laws) and decrees requires clear and definitive legal statutes being written down in texts to which the ruler is directly associated, and that this has the effect of deterring criminals from daring to disobey the law. The terminology used to refer to specific laws was relatively fluid, but does not necessarily demonstrate a consistent and abstract concept of “law” being used, or of a clear “school” devoted to its study. Even here, where it seems fa might be a term of meaning that goes beyond “standards”, the primary point being made in this passage is that of employing a practice of government that allows for the employment of the people, and of the consistent and unified action of those people towards the benefit of the state, rather than towards pursuing their own personal interests. Nevertheless, it does seem clear that because administrative and public standards of behaviour were exerted  Book of Lord Shang, “Fixing Allotments” (Ding fen 定分).231143through promulgated rules, the use of fa to describe “laws” and as “standards” blur together in many cases.  232 There may be no clear correlate for the English term “law,” but there is a body of vocabulary that when combined together can provide us a picture of how the law, as we understand it by that word, was conceived of, expressed and put into practice in early China.  Looking beyond fa for a vocabulary of law, we must also consider xing 刑 and fa 罰, which refer more explicitly to punishments applied to those who violate legal rules. Legal “statutes” (xian 憲 or lü 律) and state “directives” or “decrees” (ming 命 or ling 令) refer to the actual codified rules and legal “prohibitions” (jin 禁). We should also consider a term like yu 獄, which refers to criminal hearings. As Bodde and Morris note, “the written law of pre-modern China was overwhelmingly penal in emphasis,”  which suggests it might be preferable to refer not to the 233“legal” system as such, but rather to the “penal system,” a system of rules designed to ensure the proper punishment of individuals who transgress codified social norms.  For the most part, our knowledge of the specific statutes of penal law from early China is sparse. As Hulsewé notes, the “earliest code we possess in its entirety is the Tang penal code of 653 in its revised version of 725, and hundreds of Tang administrative rules.”  More recently, 234however, archaeological discoveries have provided greater knowledge of the specific form of penal regulations. Most notably, we have the Han legal texts discovered at Zhangjiashan 張家山  It may also be the case that this conceptualization of fa as “laws” was a late Warring States or early 232Qin development. Yuri Pines, The Book of Lord Shang, 243, notes that the “Ding fen” chapter quoted above was likely written later than the other chapters of this text. Derk Bodde and Clarence Morris, Law in Imperial China: Exemplified by 190 Ch’ing Dynasty Cases 233(Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1967), 3. Hulsewé, “Ch’in and Han Law,” 520.234144in 1983,  which also make references to Qin precedents, as well as the Qin legal texts from 235Shuihudi 睡虎地 discovered in 1975 and the Qin administrative texts found in a well at the city-site of Liye ⾥里耶 in 1996.  Thanks to these discoveries, it is now possible to see that there did 236exist a tradition of considering and weighing the role of specific legal statutes at least as early as the Qin. There was also likely a rich body of legal literature from early China that has been largely lost and is only to be recovered through archaeological textual research. In their work on the archaeologically recovered Han dynasty legal texts from Zhangjiashan, Law, State, and Society in Early Imperial China, Anthony Barbieri-Low and Robin Yates discuss the role of Judiciary Scribes (Yushi 獄史), highly literate members of the bureaucratic class whose station in society was not especially high, but who nevertheless wielded considerable power due to their role in the legal system of the early Chinese state.  Although there is some debate over the 237precise role of these texts and of their intended audience, Barbieri-Low and Yates argue that the Book of Submitted Doubtful Cases (Zouyan shu 奏讞書) text, for example, may represent not only writings intended to be used as legal references, but may also have elements more in line with an early example of ‘court-case literature’ (gong’an xiaoshuo 公案⼩小說), intended at least partly for entertainment. Regardless of the intended purpose of these texts, it appears that there did exist some kind of “legal” culture, that arose out of the lived experience of participating in  Two legal texts were found at Zhangjiashan: Ernian lüling ⼆二年律令 and Zouyan shu 奏讞書. These 235texts date to the Han dynasty, but contain legal precedents from the Qin as well. For a thorough study of these legal texts, see Anthony Barbieri-Low and Robin D.S. Yates, Law, State, and Society in Early Imperial China: A Study with Critical Edition and Translation of the Legal Texts from Zhangjiashan Tomb no. 247. For a brief description of the Liye texts, see Li Xueqin. “A Preliminary Study of the Qin Period 236Inscribed Slips from Liye,” Chinese Archaeology 2003.1. Barbieri-Low and Yates, Law, State, and Society, especially 3-5.237145the system of criminal cases, and which can now only be glimpsed through the occasional revealingly “human” moments in these recovered archaeological writings.  In the Zhangjiashan legal texts, we can find a number of statutes, most likely in an abbreviated form.  When looking at these specific legal texts, the primary terms that have the 238greatest correspondence to our concept of “law” would be “statutes” (lü 律), specific explanations of acts considered to be criminal and the rules governing how these were to be prosecuted and punished, as well as “ordinances” (ling 令), directives from the ruler intended to respond to immediate and specific needs and circumstances. These ordinances could have a “single aim or subject”, they could “list regulations for the operation of offices and bureaus”, or they could “[set] out specifications for the penal system”.  One of the key texts found in the 239Zhangjiashan corpus is the “Statutes and Ordinances of the Second Year” Ernian lüling ⼆二年律令,  a text whose surviving reconstructed version is devoted to the description of twenty-seven 240specific categories (zhong 種) of statutes as well as one category of ordinances. These categories of statutes cover a wide range of issues, including specific malicious genres of criminal activities. To take just two examples, “assault” (zei 賊) represents a broad category indicating “harm” to other persons or directly to the state,  and “robbery,” (dao 盜) conveys a broad range 241 For argument as to why these are an abbreviated version of legal statutes, see Barbieri-Low and Yates, 238Law, State, and Society, 26-32. Barbieri-Low and Yates, Law, State, and Society, 73-74.239 This name is based on what appears to be the intended “title” of this particular bamboo bundle, 240possibly written on the outermost bamboo slip as it was being prepared for the occupant’s tomb. Barbieri-Low and Yates, Law, State, and Society, 49-50. Barbieri-Low and Yates, Law, State, and Society, 384.241146of malicious activities from theft of property to grave robbing, bribery and embezzlement.  242Also included are “statutes on the composition of judgements” (Ju lü 具律), which is largely devoted to the discussion of specific sentences for crimes, and to the “mitigations or aggravations to standard sentences that took into account the rank, age, gender, or special status of the criminal.”  243 In the Zhangjiashan texts we can find examples in which public morality is regulated, with rules against illicit sexual intercourse, with specific punishments based on the scenario and the people involved.  We can also find rules for maintaining public order that bring to mind the 244village panopticon of the Guanzi texts: ⾃自五夫=(⼤大夫)以下,比地為伍。︒以辨(券)為信。︒居處相察,出入相司(伺)。︒有為盜賊及亡者,輒謁吏。︒典、︑⽥田典更挾⾥里⾨門籥(鑰),以時開。︒ For [those householders holding] Fifth Grandee or lower [rank], adjoining properties shall form [mutually-responsible] groups of five. They are to use divided [contract tallies] as proof of their trustworthiness. The residents are to investigate one another and inspect one another’s comings and goings. When there is one among them who commits robbery or assault, or absconds, [they are] immediately to inform the officials. The Village Chief and the Chief the Fields are to rotate possession of the key to the village gates and open [and close] them at the appropriate times.  245Acts that will receive punishment range widely from acts of violence, theft and corruption, but also include cases where people attempt to benefit unethically from the legal structure or whose actions go beyond the limitations imposed upon their particular office. For example, in the state of Qin, aristocratic rank (jue 爵) was bestowed to commoners for successes in military  Barbieri-Low and Yates, Law, State, and Society, 457.242 Barbieri-Low and Yates, Law, State, and Society, 496.243 Barbieri-Low and Yates, Law, State, and Society, 244 Zhangzhiajian slips 305-6. Original text and translation from Barbieri-Low and Yates, Law, State, and 245Society, 789.147endeavours as proven by delivery of the severed heads of enemies,  but in one case from the 246Qin statutes, it is suggested that a person will be punished if they attempt to acquire a rank using the head of a criminal instead.  Barbieri-Low and Yates also note similar regulations in the 247Han, pointing out one example from the “Statutes on the Establishment of Officials” where it is clearly stated that people should not go beyond the prescribed duties of their own office: 官名有辨。︒非其官事勿敢為。︒非所聽勿敢聽。︒ Each office is to have its own different [responsibilities]. What is not its office business, it is not to dare to do it. What it should not listen to (eg. denunciations, complaints), it is not to dare to listen to it.  248 These archaeological examples of legal statutes all date from the early imperial period, and so we must be careful not to attribute too many specific insights from these texts to the earlier Warring States period. What can be surmised from reading them is the general approach to legal statutes that must have already been developing, at least in the Qin state, by the end of the Warring States period. They also provide concrete examples of how a codified set of behavioural standards for both administrators and common people may have actually functioned when put into practice. Looking at these statutes not only helps to demonstrate how the penal system would have helped to manage the extraordinary complexities involved in managing the administration of the early Chinese empires, but they also provide concrete examples of how people’s self-interest was employed to constrain their behaviour through the incentives of punishments and rewards. The system of incentives could include not only beatings, death and  This is mentioned, for example, in one statute where it is clarified that a person who dies before the 246appointment, the rank is not inherited by his family. A.F.P. Hulsewé, Remnants of Ch'in law : an annotated translation of the Ch'in legal and administrative rules of the 3rd century B.C. discovered in Yün-meng Prefecture, Hu- pei Province, in 1975 (Leiden: Brill, 1985), 82-3. Hulsewé, Remnants of Ch’in Law, 118.247 Barbieri-Low and Yates, Law, State, and Society, 111.248148financial punishments and rewards but also conferral or removal of ranks within a strict social hierarchy that carried benefits for both individuals and families. The need for lengthy and pedantic additions to the rules, and the creation of statutes to take into account people's attempts to abuse the system or misuse their position highlights what the Confucians would argue was a major flaw in a system of social regulation that relied on promulgated rules and regulations. As they would argue, a punitive system fails to actually create a populace who actively and willingly obey; instead, you create a society in which people simply seek to evade punishment. Those Who Would Shepherd the People  The application of punishments and rewards may have been the most direct way of using people’s self-interest to control their behaviour, but the Guanzi texts also suggest an awareness that this was not enough to secure genuine authority. The political theory in these texts appear to temper the harsh application of punitive regulations with an understanding that in order to more fully direct the people’s behaviour, they needed to publicly project the ruler and the state to the people in a positive light and to prevent feelings of resentment among the people. To better understand this, it is useful to consider a methodological framework that was employed by Charles Sanft. In his discussion of the Qin state and its development of new techniques of statecraft, he emphasizes the need for both communication and cooperation.  His view is that 249the Warring States period was marked, at least in part, by new “insights into human behaviour”, which made it possible to develop techniques of governance that made possible the large, unified state structure of the Qin. Because Sanft argues that the basic functioning of government requires  Charles Sanft, Communication and Cooperation in Early Imperial China (Albany: State University of 249New York Press, 2014).149the organized cooperation of the common people, these insights into human behaviour were key for the ability to expand the reach of a centralized state administration. As Sanft argues, “the common people’s participation was by definition active and the people had to be persuaded to give it.”  There are indications in Warring States political writings that thinkers were aware of 250this problem, as seen for example in the persuasive narratives discussed in Chapter Two where we can see rulers’ anxiety that their directives will be subject to criticism and resistance. This can also be seen in Book One of the Mengzi, where we see Mencius’ attempts to argue that moral rectitude is the best means of gaining the approval of the people, and in the Annals of Lü Buwei where we can find arguments about the need to gain the people’s support. Mark Edward Lewis also notes how in the Spring and Autumn period, there was a need to gain the approval and consolidate the support of the capital populace (guoren 國⼈人).  In some Warring States texts, 251this problem of disapproval is expressed in terms of mobs or masses arriving at the palaces to complain. Addressing people’s “hearts” is therefore a necessary precaution in political theories of the Warring States, and this idea appears to have been thoroughly adopted by the end of the period. As Sanft argues, this issue was taken very seriously by the Qin state in their consolidating and centralizing project.   In both “Shepherding the People” and “The Eight Points of Observation”, punishments and rewards are only part of a broader political approach that also expresses a need to keep the  Sanft, Communication and Cooperation, 38.250 Mark Edward Lewis, Sanctioned Violence in Early China, 48-49. Securing this support may have been 251one of the main purposes of the Spring and Autumn period blood covenant texts discovered in Houma and Wenxian, for which see Crispin Williams, “Ten Thousand Names: Rank and Lineage Affiliation in the Wenxian Covenant Texts,” Asiatische Studien 63.4 The shift towards increasingly centralized territorial states presumably would have altered this relationship between rulers and capital inhabitants, but Warring States texts still show a concern over uprisings and anger among the populace.150people happy. In “Shepherding the People” this program includes “prohibiting luxury and artfulness” (jin wenqiao 禁⽂文巧) so that punishments can be reduced, and making the people obedient by honouring the spirits (ming guishen 明鬼神),  respecting the mountain and river 252gods (qi shanchuan 祇山川), revering the ancestral temples (jing zongmiao 敬宗廟) and venerating ancestors and great men of the past (gong zujiu 恭祖舊).  In “The Eight Points of 253Observation” this broader program also requires entering the capital and towns and observing them to see if the state is being “wasteful or frugal” (chi jian 侈儉).  A state not imposing 254reasonable limits upon the production and consumption of luxury goods by elites will impoverish the people and give rise to “wicked ideas” (jian zhi 姦智).  While the basic tactics required in the Guanzi texts for achieving political authority rely on the promulgation of clear rules of behaviour and their accompanying punishments, the texts also argue that the active cooperation of the populace is required before anything can be accomplished. When the populace has thoroughly “departed” or “become distant” (li 離) from the ruler, they cannot be won over by the simple application of punishments, as this will drive them even further away. If the people turn away from their ruler, see their own contributions to the state through the production of their goods being wasted on luxuries, or else see do not see  Following major commentators in reading ming 明 as “venerate”, “respect”, or “honour,” Guo, Guanzi 252jijiao, 3-4. This line of argument is also reminiscent of the extant “Ming gui” 明鬼 chapter of the Mozi text, where a belief in ghosts is put forward as one of the key tools for ensuring social stability: “Now if all the people in the world could be brought to believe that ghosts and spirits are able to reward the worthy and punish the wicked, then how could the world be in disorder?” (今若使天下之⼈人,偕若信鬼神之能賞賢⽽而罰暴也,則夫天下豈亂哉). Translation from Johnston, Mozi, 279. Translation from Rickett, Guanzi, 53.253 Translation from Rickett, Guanzi, 228.254151that their own behaviour will have any consistent consequences in terms of punishments and rewards, they can no longer be administered and orders will not be followed. To take just one example, in the “Eight Areas of Observation” chapter, this exact problem is conveyed as a failure to make it clear to the people that they have a stake in the success of the state, and that the following of orders will reliably benefit them: 置法出令,臨眾⽤用民,計其威嚴寬惠,⾏行於其民與不⾏行於其民可知也。︒法虛⽴立⽽而害疏遠,令⼀一布⽽而不聽者存,賤爵祿⽽而毋功者富,然則眾必輕令,⽽而上位危。︒ Calculate the degree of strictness or leniency in setting up laws, issuing orders, supervising the masses, and employing the people to ascertain whether or not these things are effective among the people. If laws are instituted in a thoughtless manner and are harmful to those removed [from court], if from the moment orders are issues there are those who pay no attention to them, if the lowly are given ranks and those with no merit become rich, the masses will certainly treat orders lightly and the position of the sovereign will be endangered.  255This need for active cooperation, in Sanft’s framework, raises a problem for the ruler, who has no choice but to consider the likes and dislikes of the people when considering what demands to make of them. On the most basic level, he must ensure that he simply does not demand too much. As the “Laws and Standards” chapter notes, pushing too much will be counter productive: 求多者,其得寡,禁多者,其⽌止寡。︒令多者,其⾏行寡。︒ If he seeks too much (from them), little will be gained; if he prohibits too much, little will be stopped; if he orders too much, little will be carried out.  256A true balance must be achieved, but the ruler also needs to pay strict attention to the basic desires of the people. Besides clear and strict punishments to overwhelm the people with the awesome might of the state and to clarify the “road to certain death,” correct action must be seen to dependably lead to prizes and increases in rank.  Translation from Rickett, Guanzi, 223.255 Translation, with minor emendations, from Rickett, Guanzi, 252.256152 Perhaps drawing on some of the ideas put forward by Confucian thinkers,  the Guanzi 257texts also note that there is a risk of losing the people’s cooperation if they feel the ruler is hypocritical, or if it becomes clear that the state's resources are being used excessively for his own benefit. These indications of extravagance and hypocrisy can lead to anger and resentment: 厚愛利,⾜足以親之。︒明智禮,⾜足以教之。︒上身服以先之。︒審度量以閑之。︒ Being generous with care and [material] benefits is sufficient to gain the affection of the people. Manifesting wisdom and ritual propriety is sufficient to instruct them. [However], the sovereign himself must submit [to these qualities] in order to serve as an example for them and see that there is proper measure in exactions and expenditures in order to guard against [excesses].  258At points, the texts appear to borrow very directly from the Confucian vocabulary, emphasizing the moral rectitude of the sage kings of antiquity and of the capacity to inculcate within the people a proper sense of “shame” (chi 恥), so that they conduct themselves appropriately. These views are curious, and sometimes feel appended to otherwise pragmatic political philosophies. One example of this can be found in the “Standards and prohibitions” (Fajin 法禁) chapter: 聖王之身,治世之時,德⾏行必有所是,道義必有所明︔;故⼠士莫敢詭俗異禮,以⾃自⾒見於國.... 是故聖王之教民也,以仁錯之,以恥使之,修其能,致其所成⽽而⽌止。︒故曰:「絕⽽而定,靜⽽而治,安⽽而尊,舉錯⽽而不變者,聖王之道也。︒」 During the age when the sage kings personally exercised their rule, virtuous conduct was certain to be prevalent, and moral standards were clear. Therefore none of the scholars (shi ⼠士) dared offend against established custom or distort the rules of propriety in order to make himself known throughout the country…. For this reason, when the sage kings instructed their people, they used goodness (ren 仁) to manage them and a sense of shame (chi 恥) to motivate them. They cultivated their abilities to attain that which they could do, and that is all. Therefore it is said: “Decisive, and thus stable; calm, and thus ordered; at peace, and thus  Cook, “Coercive Rulership.”257 Translation from Rickett, Guanzi, 93.258153venerated; establishing protocols without (later) altering them— such was the way of the sage kings.”  259Despite the window-dressing of this Confucian vocabulary, the texts nevertheless consistently argue for the instrumental application of punishments and rewards, and a focus on people’s basic self-interest. The need for careful projection of the ruler’s image is limited to the danger of resentment arising if the people feel that their labour is not benefiting them because the ruler has using the state’s wealth to fund a luxurious lifestyle, or if the vocabulary of morality is employed against the people by a ruler who himself appears to be morally depraved. This approach to cooperation bears more similarity to contemporary practices of public relations than to the Confucian project in which moral emotions are carefully inculcated.  What the Guanzi texts do contribute to this instrumental approach to politics is more in terms of Sanft’s concept of “communication.” This is true first of all because of the way that the authority of the state and the rectitude of the ruler need to be communicated. Much of the discussion of authority in these works includes a communicative and instructive element, “making clear” the road to certain death and ensuring that the people are made aware that the ruler does not hypocritically disobey his own standards. The people also must not see examples of extravagance in the use of state resources, or else they will begin to take orders lightly. Taken broadly, communication also includes ritual elements,  at the very least in order to clarify the 260social hierarchy. This is built into the “panoptic” structure discussed above, with violations of ritual-hierarchical norms being noted and communicated up the command chain with strict consequences. It is this form of communication that must also reach into the very hearts of the  Translation, with emendations, from Rickett, Guanzi, 239-40.259 Sanft, Communication and Cooperation, 27-29; 46-48.260154people and ensure that their dispositions toward the state are kept correct. This can be seen most clearly in “Cultivating Authority” where both institutional and ritualized elements of the social hierarchy are emphasized: 朝廷不肅,貴賤不明,長幼不分,度量不審,衣服無等,上下淩節,⽽而求百姓之尊主政令,不可得也。︒ If the dignity of the court is not preserved, and the positions of the honoured and lowly are not clearly defined; if the old and young are not distinguished, and proper measure [in regard to exactions and expenditures] is not observed; if there are no gradations of clothing [according to rank], and sovereign and subject both exceed the proper limits, it is impossible to expect the hundred surnames to honor the government and orders of their ruler.  261Finally, this system of maintaining social order and ensuring communication also includes an instructional component. In the Guanzi texts, “instruction” involves the communication of strict rules of behaviour. The specific concerns about people’s moral behaviour comes down to the issue of public order, in the sense that indications of moral depravity, such as the illicit interaction between sexes, are a standard metric of disorder. This can be seen in “Cultivating Authority”:  凡牧民者,使⼠士無邪⾏行,女無淫事。︒⼠士無邪⾏行,教也。︒女無淫事,訓也。︒教訓成俗,⽽而刑罰省,數也。︒ Those who would shepherd the people cause men to refrain from evil acts and women to refrain from illicit affairs. When men do not commit evil acts, it is because they have been [properly] instructed. When women do not engage in illicit affairs, it is because they have been [properly] admonished. When instruction and admonition mould customary behaviour, punishments decline.  262Following this section is a long and repetitive set of passages that argue for the need of the ruler, in shepherding the people, to ensure the people follow the basic moral virtues of ritual propriety  Translation from Rickett, Guanzi, 95-6.261 Translation from Rickett, Guanzi, 96-7.262155(li 禮), righteousness (yi 義), and honesty (lian 廉). These virtues, it is argued, can only be ensured so long as the state is meticulous in demanding them even in small affairs. The role of the state is to “prohibit even the slightest beginnings of evil”  (jin wei xie 禁微邪). This moral 263instruction represents another form of communication, and there is some indication of how the Guanzi texts believed this instructional role was performed, in the person of the district governor (xiangshi 鄉師), who in “Cultivating Authority” is responsible for “guiding” (導)  the people 264before they are made aware of the specific statutes and directives (xian ling 憲令) of the law. In the Rites of Zhou (Zhouli 周禮), the “Confucian” vision of the ideal state, we can find a description of this district governor performing a role similar to that described in “Cultivating Authority”: 鄉師之職:各掌其所治鄉之教⽽而聽其治。︒以國比之法,以時稽其夫家眾寡,辨其⽼老幼、︑貴賤、︑廢疾、︑⾺馬⽜牛之物,辨其可任者與其施舍者,掌其戒令糾禁,聽其獄訟。︒ The office of the District Governor: Each is responsible for the instruction of those residing in the district over which he governs, ensuring that they heed his command so that standards are in accord with the state. In accordance to the season, he should make an inspection of the households to see which are (too) large and which are (too) small, taking account of the old and young, noble and base, the injured and sick, of wealth in horse and cattle, and who can be employed and who should be given charity. He is responsible for admonishments and proclamations, rectification and prohibition, and for hearing criminal cases.  265In the Rites of Zhou, this officer appears to be responsible for communicating between the state and the districts, with a “guiding” role, ensuring that the people are kept obedient through  Rickett Guanzi, 97.263 Reading 道 as 導, Guo, Guanzi jijiao, 39. The Guanzi text actually states that the District Governor 264should “shuo dao 說道,” and there is some debate over whether the 說 character is excrescent. Rickett leaves this character in the text and translates it as “exhort." Rites of Zhou (Zhouli 周禮), “Diguan situ” 地官司徒.265156proclamations and instruction and, when necessary, through the hearing of criminal cases in which we can assume a decision would be rendered in terms of what sort of punishment will be put into practice.  In the “Establishing Government,” the nature of these communications up the chain of command are expression in the vocabulary of public order: 凡孝悌忠信、︑賢良俊材,若在長家⼦子弟臣妾屬役賓客,則什伍以復于游宗,游宗以復于⾥里尉。︒⾥里尉以復于州長。︒州長以計于鄉師。︒鄉師以著于⼠士師。︒ All [special] cases of filial piety and respect for elders, loyalty and faithfulness, worthiness and goodness, or refinement and talent on the part of the sons, younger brothers, male or female slaves, and retainers or guests the head of a household shall be reported accordingly by the leaders of the groups of ten or five to the clan elder of the circuit. The clan elder shall report them to the village commandant who [in turn] / shall report them to the subdistrict prefect. He shall summarize them for the district governor who will record them for the chief justice (shishi ⼠士師).  266Some of this terminology about public order does give the impression of the influence of Confucian ideas. As we will see in the following chapter, the Guodian’s Ritual Authority Manuscripts are particularly concerned with how these virtues manage social relationships. Filial piety and respect for elders are seen as virtues that guide interactions between generations, and loyalty and faithfulness are virtues that guide the interactions between ruler and minister. The “Eight Points of Observation” text even goes so far as to argue that “If [those on high] turn their backs on the social order and behave like [wild] birds and beasts, within ten years [the state] will be annihilated.”  This concept of the “social order” or the “human relations” (renlun ⼈人倫) is 267one of the most fundamental parts of the Guodian manuscript’s approach to government, and the  Translation from Rickett, Guanzi, 104-5.266 Translation, with emendations, from Rickett, Guanzi, 233. Rickett translates renlun ⼈人倫 as “the five 267human relations”, but this seems to be an overly specific and possibly anachronistic reading of the text.157appearance of these concepts in the Guanzi texts suggests that this emphasis did gain some currency in discussions of political philosophy. The Guanzi texts may even have directly borrowed terms directly from the Guodian manuscripts or similar writings, but when employed within these texts their importance only extends as far as expressing concepts of public order or else concepts of public projection of the ruler to the people. Conclusion  The need to conceptualize the problem of political authority was one of the driving forces for new ideas in Warring States political theory. For the rulers of the increasingly centralized territorial states, there was a need to find ways to ensure control over the population, accomplish desired political reforms and maintain the strength of the military. One major approach to this problem involved the channeling and directing of people’s behaviour by promulgating clear standards of behaviour, and strictly rewarding or punishing people on the basis of their performance. This approach assumed that people’s psychological tendencies were relatively straightforward, with basic self-interest being the only consistent and effective element of their disposition that needed to be taken into account. This approach also aided in the development of the state bureaucracy by offloading the ruler’s need to make personal decisions about appointments, or to consider too deeply the moral or personal qualities individual members of the state apparatus. At the same time, there are indications that this theory of authority was insufficient. As Sanft has argued, the project of the centralized empire in the Qin also required taking into account the need for public cooperation in state enterprises, as well as systems of communication between the state and its population. Indications of these concerns can also be 158found in Warring States writings, and are most clearly expressed in the political theory chapters of the Guanzi. In these texts, the problem of communication is mainly resolved by creating institutions that keep a close eye on the behaviour of people throughout the realm, and also clearly communicating the standards of behaviour and the consequences or benefits for violating or fulfilling them. Any indication of moral depravity was a clear sign of incipient public disorder, a problem that carried risks for the management of the state as a whole. The problem of cooperation was mainly resolved through careful attention to the way that the state and its ruler were projected to the people. This required ensuring that basic concerns of public relations were taken into account so that the people did not feel their wealth was being wasting elite luxuries and that the ruler was not a moral hypocrite.  This emphasis on the application of punishments and rewards represented one of the largest threats to the Confucian view of politics, which emphasized self-cultivation, the historical authority of the traditional structure of the Zhou state, and the maintenance of public order through the careful inculcation of norms. For Confucian thinkers, the promulgation of codified rules was a deeply problematic approach to the problem of political authority. If the historical account in the Zuo is to believed, then the earlier iterations of this debate came down not so much to the problem of enacting punishments, but to the fixing of these punishments through the act of inscription. The well-known accounts in the Zuo text claim that in 536 BCE the state of Zheng 政 first cast a list of punishments in bronze, while Confucius himself would later lament the state of Jin 晉 casting its own penal code on their infamous “punishment tripod” (刑鼎) in 513 BCE. This problem of inscribing the punitive statutes is complex. Scott Cook suggests that in this early critique against the inscription of legal statutes, the ministerial class was concerned 159with the clear establishment of written and standardized penal codes diminishing their own status in society.  As Cook points out, the promulgation of standardized penal rules would have 268centralized the power to render legal decisions into the hands of the state’s rulers at the expense of ministerial autonomy. In the Analects, we can find examples of the role of the ministerial class in deciding criminal cases, for example in Confucius’s description of his disciple Zilu ⼦子路: ⼦子曰:「⽚片⾔言可以折獄者,其由也與︖?」 The Master said, “Able to decide a criminal case after only hearing one side — does this not describe Zilu?”  269This individualized approach to dealing with social regulation is certainly diminished by the inscription and promulgation of punitive rules, and Confucian thinkers would also add that there is no method being employed to reduce the incidents of criminal behaviour in the first place. From the perspective of the Confucian critique, another problem with the promulgation of penal prohibitions is that it frames moral conduct in terms of precise rules rather than any inherent moral order. One consequence of this listing of prohibitions is that people have been effectively given an instruction sheet of the precise prohibitions to avoid violating, while perhaps still pursuing immoral ends. This framework dates back to at least as early as the received Analects, where Confucius delivers one of his most famous lines: ⼦子曰:「道之以政,齊之以刑,民免⽽而無恥︔;道之以德,齊之以禮,有恥且格」。︒ The Master said, “If you try to guide the common people with coercive regulations (zheng 政) and keep them in line with punishments , the common people will become evasive and will have no sense of shame. If, however, you guide them with virtue, and keep them in line by means of ritual, the people will have a sense of shame and will rectify themselves.”  270 Cook, “Coercive Rulership”, 404-5.268 Analects 12.12. Translation from Slingerland, Analects, 131.269 Analects 2.3. Translation from Slingerland, Analects, 8.270160As with so much of the Analects, a lot is packed into this dense quotation. At the heart of this Confucian attack on coercive authority is the question of the common people’s interior psychological state. The text presents two clear alternative technologies of social control, and suggests that the blunt instrument of punitive regulation may appear to be the simplest and most direct but it ultimately fails through its misunderstanding of human psychology. Ritual propriety, on the other hand, is presented as a practice whose subtle relationship with people’s interior moral qualities makes it the more useful tool.  It is on this question of human psychology that the true distinction between the penal approach to political authority and the Guodian manuscript’s “ritual authority” are distinguished. For Shen Dao, attempting to alter people’s psychological dispositions is ineffective, and the only reliable feature of human psychology is their self-interest. A similar approach is taken in the Guanzi texts. As “Cultivating Authority” puts it: ⼈人情不⼆二,故民情可得⽽而御也。︒審其所好惡,則其長短可知也. People’s dispositions are (basically) the same, and so it is possible to get hold of their feelings and so “steer” them. By examining their likes and dislikes, their strengths and weaknesses can then be known. Addressing the problem of political authority required thinking through the highly complex problem of managing a vast territorial state made up of individuals with their own desires and whims. This resulted in the development of a new conceptual vocabulary for thinking about the problem in abstract terms, which prominently included concepts of human psychology. For the so-called Legalist thinkers in particular, the creation of standards of behaviours was the best approach to the question of human psychology. Cultivating centralized authority required channeling people’s behaviour towards the interests of the state in a consistent and reliable way, 161and this in turn meant removing as much as possible the personal and emotional commitments that were emphasized by Confucians.  It was in light of both this threat to Confucian values and the development of a conceptual vocabulary of political authority that the Guodian manuscripts were written. Chapter Four of this study will explore how these ideas about human psychology and the problem of managing the state are addressed in four particular manuscripts from the Guodian corpus. In these texts we find nuanced theory of ritual psychology at the heart of a political theory in which the moral emotions are a key feature of a functional approach to political authority. These manuscripts address the suite of concerns expressed in political writings of this time, including the problem of public cooperation and communication, as well as the problem of public order. Ritual psychology is the most important feature of this theory because of the way deals with the specific social dynamics that underly the management of the state. For these manuscripts, the problem of political authority can only be fully resolved if it takes into account the actual motivations and intentions of the people who make up the state. 162Chapter 4: The Ritual Authority Manuscripts Introduction  In this chapter, we finally turn to the Guodian manuscripts that first prompted the question at the heart of this study. The comprehensive view of these four manuscripts taken together is used to defend the historical authority of Zhou traditions by arguing that the contingent nature of culture, rather than threatening the authority of Confucian practices, highlights the fundamental importance of these practices in creating a moral, stable and culturally refined society. The texts focus particularly on the value of the ritual practices of li 禮. The unique power of li, according to these texts, is that these practices evoke an inherent and universal psychological tendency in human beings that shapes and guides their moral dispositions. These practices are portrayed as part of a cultural system that was perfected by the sages, providing the virtuous ruler with an administrative tool that is uniquely capable of addressing people’s complex moral emotions. Through a close reading of these four Ritual Authority manuscripts, this chapter will examine the broader program within which ritual is asserted as the most important political tool, and then consider more closely the question of how these ritualized practices are portrayed. These texts appear to represent the clearest manifestation of a suasive approach to government, and so offer a particularly useful perspective on how ritual came to be the subject of this theorization.  When considered within the context of other recently discovered archaeological texts of a political and philosophical nature, such as those in the Shanghai Museum collection or Tsinghua University collection, these Ritual Authority manuscripts contribute to our understanding of how 163political problems were being conceptualized in fresh and dynamic ways during this period. For example, Sarah Allen examined four different archaeological manuscripts  to investigate the 271ways that legends of abdication were being used at this time to contemplate the idea of a truly meritocratic government.  These legends show a mythic/historical precedent for state rulers 272being decided by merit rather than heredity that could be used to ask fundamental questions about the nature of how the state should be organized at a fundamental level. In a similar vein, the Guodian texts show a concerted effort to think seriously about the historical development of complex societies, and to consider what conclusions should be made from the acknowledgement that societies change and evolve over time. Implicitly acknowledging that human beings originally lived in societies that were smaller, based on simpler social and material technologies, and were governed by local, kin-based authoritative structure, the Ritual Authority manuscripts argue that the cultural accomplishments of the early Zhou sages should nevertheless be defended.  273 The previous chapters of this study have looked at these issues of culture and social regulation with a wide lens, considering the ways in which these concepts were being discussed over the course of the entire Warring States era and by a variety of thinkers. In contrast, this chapter narrows its focus to four specific manuscripts that share a unified intellectual approach. Because they were archaeologically recovered, we can provide a clear terminus ante quem of c.  Allan’s study looks at Tang Yu zhi dao 唐虞之道 from the Guodian corpus, Zigao ⼦子羔 and 271Rongchengshi 容成氏 from the Shanghai Museum collection and Bao xun 保訓 from the Tsinghua University collection. These texts are not considered to be directly connected by anything other than their theme of meritocracy. Sarah Allan, Buried Ideas: Legends of Abdication and Ideal Government in Early Chinese Bamboo-272Slip Manuscripts (Albany: State University of New York Press, 2015). This is discussed in Slingerland, “The problem of moral spontaneity.”273164300 BCE, which allows us to consider these writings as representing the intellectual developments of a particular moment in time. As Cook argues, this particular moment appears to represent an apex in the suasive strand of thought, and in these manuscripts we also find an important moment in the transition from a defence of Confucian practices that is still at least partly grounded in a view of li as being linked to the cosmos itself and the purely instrumental view of Xunzi.  As noted in Chapter Two of this study, the political reforms and social changes that defined the Warring States period had resulted in changing dynamics in early China’s social relationships, both between the family and the state and between the ruler and his administrators. This gave rise to new political theories that sought ways to consolidate the centralized authority of the ruler and create a more consistent and pervasive form of political authority. These theories relied on increasing bureaucratization, and made use of the basic incentives of punishments and rewards in an increasingly codified and elaborate penal system to motivate and control people’s behaviour. Intellectually justifying these reforms also required taking on the historical authority that adhered to inherited cultural forms by rhetorically portraying social customs as contingent and changeable practices. These two threats to the Confucian view of politics compelled at least one strand of Confucian thinkers to craft a response that took on the views of these political reformists.  This was also a moment when new and innovative philosophies were being developed on the subjects of ethics, medicine, meditation and the body. Thinkers from a range of schools of thought appear to have been able to interact most directly at the Jixia academy that existed under the auspices of the Qi king, allowing for the borrowing of ideas. By the time the Guodian 165manuscripts were authored, new concepts about the body and methods of logic had developed, and these ideas are clearly incorporated in these texts. The views and ideas of political reformists such as Shen Dao both challenged and invigorated Confucian philosophy. Making use of the insights afforded by new conceptual vocabularies of both the human body and the body politic, we can see in these Guodian manuscripts a theorization of ritual psychology that was used at once to defend a conservative and traditionalist view of society and to present an innovative new approach to political theory.  This chapter will consider how the Ritual Authority manuscripts responded to these historical developments and intellectual threats, and why this resulted in the development of a theory of ritual psychology focused on the practices of li. I will examine the core ideas behind this theory of ritual psychology in five sections. The first section discusses the manuscripts’ overarching theory of government, represented by the concept of the “Human Way,” (ren dao ⼈人道) a theory of government that relied on a nuanced understanding the people’s psychological dispositions. This view is laid out most clearly in the text Zun deyi. The second section discusses the concept of the “Great Constancy,” (dachang ⼤大常), in which these manuscripts’ normative conceptualization of the ideal structure of the social world is discussed. This issue is the primary theme and focus of the Liu de text which first lays out the six social roles of the human world before problematizing the tension between the private world of kin relations and the socially constructed public world of the state. The third section discusses the theorization of ritual psychology laid out in the first section of the Xing zi ming chu text. In this text, it is argued that human beings are unique in the world in the way that their behaviour is shaped fundamentally by 166culture. The fourth section discusses the importance of political trust and emotional commitments, as highlighted in the second and third chapters of Xing zi ming chu as well as the Cheng zhi text. In these texts, it is argued that trust can only be established when the people running the state have cultivated genuine moral emotions. Finally, the fifth section looks at the importance of moral instruction, a form of political communication that differs fundamentally from the promulgation of penal regulations. Most importantly for the purposes of this study, the actions of ritual propriety are portrayed as the most effectual method of moral communication. In this view, ritualized conduct can demonstrate and instruct moral and emotional qualities in a way that coercive government cannot. The Human Way  Of these four manuscripts, the text that has received the least amount of scholarly attention is the one to which the editors of the 1998 publication gave the title Zun deyi (“Honouring Virtue and Rightness”).  This lack of attention is unfortunate, as the text offers the 274clearest overarching picture of the philosophical and political position that is staked out in these manuscripts. The central theme is the need to take into account the psychological dispositions of human nature when engaging in government — a view most clearly expressed by the concept of the “Human Way” (ren dao ⼈人道), or “Way of the People” (mindao 民道, min zhi dao 民之 See Cook, Bamboo Texts, 627-637 for an introduction to this text. See also Chen Ming, “Minben 274zhengzhi de xin lunzheng” 民本政治的新論正, in Guodian Chujiuan guoji xueshu yantaohui lunwenji, ed. Wuhan daxue Zhongguo wenhua yanjiuyuan, who argues that Zun deyi helps show how some Confucian thinkers continued to offer Warring States political discourse a theory of politics focused on the common people.167道).  This term is perhaps the clearest expression of how the Ritual Authority manuscripts 275rhetorically address the problem of political authority and justify the value of Confucian practices and ethics in the face of the widespread political reforms that emphasized coercive rulership and centralized power. In contrast to the tools of punishment and reward, the “Human Way” is presented as a method of government that offered a more nuanced approach to managing people’s behaviour. As Scott Cook notes, this discourse on the Human Way is used to defend ritual and music as methods of moral instruction that are unique in their ability to nurture human nature “with a kind of harmony and rhythm that keeps it within its proper balance without the least bit of coercion.”  276 While the application of punishments and rewards may appear to be the easiest and most consistent way of employing the people, Zun deyi argues that if these practices are not based on a genuine understanding of people’s natures they will not be effective: 賞與刑,禍福之旗 也,有前之者矣。︒ 277爵位,所以信其然也; 徵斂 ,所以攻〔戰也〕; 278刑〔罰〕 ,所以□遷 也; 279 280 For a discussion, see Cook, Bamboo Texts, 154-156.275 Cook, “Coercive Rulership,” 403.276 Following Cook, Bamboo Texts, 641 n17, in reading this as 旗 rather than 基. In the latter reading, this 277passage would read as “rewards and punishments are the foundation of fortune and calamity.” Following Cook, Bamboo Texts, 642 n21, in reading these two characters as 徵斂.278 The three characters at the top of slip 3 are illegible. I have followed Cook, Bamboo Texts 642 n22 ,279643 n23, in reading these characters. As Cook, Bamboo Texts, 643 n24, argues, these lines appear to have loosely rhymed, making 遷 a 280likely reading for this character.168殺戮,所以除害(怨) 也; 281不由其道,不⾏行。︒ 仁為可親也; 義為可尊也; 忠為可信也; 學為可益也; 教為可類也。︒ 教非改道也,教之也。︒學非改倫也,學⼰己也。︒ Rewards and punishments are the banners of fortune and calamity, but there is (a principle) that comes before these. Through rank and position make (authority) credible Through administration and prohibitions combat…. Through (punishments and penalties?) … promote…. Through killings and executions remove resentment But if these are not done in accordance with the right Way, they will not succeed. Through goodness you can earn affection Through rightness you can earn respect Through loyalty you can earn trust Through study you can enhance (yourself) Through education you can provide a model (for others). “Education” does not mean to alter the way, but (rather) to instruct it. “Study” does not mean to alter the human relations, but (rather) to learn (about) oneself.  282 Zun deyi’s argument for the place of the moral emotions as a fundamental issue to be addressed in conceptualizing the state apparatus should be understood against the backdrop of political reform in which thinkers such as Shen Dao had emphasized the need for a centralized and “automated” state. As was discussed in more detail in Chapter Three of this study, Shen’s focus on designing the machinery of the state with individual bureaucrats functioning like artisans mastering their own niche specializations represents the development of a “rationalized” nascent bureaucracy, in Weberian terms. The advantages of this system, according to Shen, was that this helps avoid the problems that arise from overly personal court dynamics. It would also  Following Cook, Bamboo Texts 643 n25, in reading this as 怨.281 Zun deyi, 2-5.282169remove the need for the political and moral virtuosos, or “worthies,” praised by Mohist and Confucian thinkers, by creating a system of government practice that can be run even by mediocre officiants.  Importantly, Shen Dao’s theory was based on the assumption that it was a fruitless endeavour to try and alter people’s emotional dispositions or natures. His theory of a centralized bureaucracy assumes that the only realistic way to engage with people’s psychology is to be clear-eyed about their nature, and to rely on their own self-interest rather than remaining attached to any moralistic or naïve concept of loyalty or virtue. This view is the basis for what we might call Shen’s early “science” of administration, based on a naturalistic understanding of the world in which human agency is capable of making use of the natural world, but Heaven has no direct moral concern for the human world.  As Harris notes, this “idea that political thought needs to 283begin with the state and the people as they actually are, rather than with a vision of how they ought to be” seems to be one of the themes that connects the so-called “Legalist” thinkers together, in contrast to those who seem either to view political philosophy as “an exercise in applied ethics or otherwise to think that the normativity to be desired in the political realm bears a necessary relationship with the normativity of the moral realm.”  Approaching practices of 284government should take the same approach as the engineering project of managing water, a technology closely associated with the accomplishments of the mythical sage-king Yu 禹 who is traditionally credited with both taming the floodwaters of the Yellow River valley region and founding the first of the states of the Three Ages.  Harris, Shenzi Fragments, 12-28.283 Harris, Shenzi Fragments, 24.284170 Shen argues in contrast that the management of flood waters is a technique that should be credited to a careful understanding of water’s own nature, not the unique genius of a sage: 治⽔水者,茨防決塞,九州四海,相似如⼀一,學之於⽔水,不學之于禹也。︒ Those who work to control water build up dikes and undo blockages. Even among the Yi and Mo, the methods are similar. [These methods] are learned from water, they are not learned from Yu.  285Zun deyi appears to be responding to this approach by accepting its premise but rejecting its conclusion. While the Ritual Authority manuscripts would assent to the view that administrative theories should indeed be based on a careful understanding of people’s natures, they disagree that such a view must necessarily find no moral tendencies within that nature. This point is defended by stating that the approach of moral suasion is not predicated on a futile attempt to alter people’s natures; rather, this suasive approach subtly educates and nurtures already present inclinations. As the text argues, it was through knowledge of this specific “Way” of human beings that the sage king Yu was able to successfully govern his people as well as the reason why the tyrant Jie 桀, whose misrule brought about the fall of the Xia state, brought disorder and turmoil to his people. It was not that Jie somehow fundamentally altered the people, nor that Tang, who subsequently founded the Shang dynasty, fundamentally altered Jie’s people before successfully managing them.  Effectual government, therefore depends on understanding the 286Human Way and being able to work within the means of this Way. This point is further refined with its own analogy of Yu taming the flood waters:  Shenzi fragments, 68. Translation from Harris, Shenzi Fragments 121; for a discussion see Harris, 285Shenzi Fragments, 21-26. Zun deyi 5-6.286171聖⼈人之治民,民之道也。︒禹之⾏行⽔水,⽔水之道也。︒造⽗父之御⾺馬,⾺馬(也)之道也。︒后稷之藝地,地之道也。︒莫不有道焉,⼈人道為近。︒是以君⼦子⼈人道之取先。︒ The method of governing the people used by the sage is the Way of the People. The method of channeling the waters used by Yu was the Way of Water. The method of steering horses used by Zao Fu  was the Way of Horses. The method of cultivating the earth used by Houji  was 287 288the Way of the Earth. There is nothing that does not have a Way within it, and the Human Way is the one most immediate (for us). Therefore, the Gentleman takes the Human Way as paramount.  289The approach of the Human Way is by nature suasive and subtle, making use of the moral tools of ritual and music. This approach to cultivating political authority is contrasted with the other available methods, which include strategies of “instructing” (jiao 教) the people by means of disputation and persuasion (bianshuo 辯說), situational authority (shi 勢), ingenuity (ji 技), (persuasive) words (yan ⾔言), administrative service (shi 事), or through the disingenuous means of raw authority (quan 權) or political scheming (mou 謀).  The ultimate problem with these 290other strategies of controlling people and maintaining authority is that they do not take into account the motivating structures of human psychology: 凡動民必順民⼼心,民⼼心有恒,求其養。︒  291Motivating the people must be done in accordance to the people’s hearts. The people’s hearts have a constant (nature), and you must seek to nourish this.  292 A famed and mythical master of horses and expert charioteer.287 Houji 后稷, often translated as “Lord Millet” or “Lord of Millet” is the mythical figure credited with 288the advent of agriculture in ancient China. Zun deyi, 6-8.289 Zun deyi, 13-16.290 Following Cook, Bamboo Texts, 654 n87, in reading this as yang 養 rather than yong 永.291 Zun deyi, 39.292172The text illustrates the way that these lesser strategies for controlling, managing and ordering the people all ultimately fail to address the issue of their internal motivation. By ignoring this “invisible” aspect of managing a populace, there are unanticipated consequences to how the people will actually ultimately behave.  This also plays out within the state apparatus itself, and the text expresses concern that a Legalist approach to state administration also fails to take into account people’s psychological dispositions. In Shen Dao’s view, government offices should be treated like the work of artisans who acquire professional ability through specialization in their own post. When “constant standards” (changfa 常法) are not being applied to government offices, the state goes into decline and people begin to yearn for the “worthy and the wise” (xianzhi 賢智).  In this 293bureaucratic theory, rewards and punishments are given on the basis of one’s performance of clearly laid out rules, and the “education”  of officials only extends as far as clarifying the 294correct standards required for the performance of the office. In contrast, Zun deyi would argue that training for the job alone is insufficient: 夫⽣生⽽而有職事者也,非教所及也。︒教其政,不教其⼈人,政弗⾏行矣。︒ That a person has the responsibilities of office from birth is not the result of education. If one educates in terms of the office and does not educate in terms of the person, then (the duties) of their office will not be carried out.  295At the heart of Zun deyi’s Human Way is the view that human beings are much more complex beings than the administrative theories of people like Shen Dao acknowledge. Failing to take into  Shenzi Fragments 19-20.293 A term also employed in Shenzi fragment 19, where it is warned that “although instruction may be 294complete, government offices will not be up to the task” (教雖成,官不⾜足). Zun deyi 18b - 19. Scott Cook has changed the top portions of strip 18 and 32, and slip 18b refers to 295the bottom portion slip18. See Cook, Bamboo Texts, 636-7.173account the complexity of human psychological dispositions results in an incomplete and ineffectual approach to government. This argument appears to be directed specifically towards the debates over the problem of political authority, and the overarching theory of the Human Way is contrasted explicitly with the coercive use of punishments and rewards.  What is striking about Zun deyi’s rhetoric is the way that it seems to be simultaneously inspired by and directed against the emerging “science” of administration that we can see in Shen Dao’s writings, with the value of the Human Way is expressed as the rational application of the understanding of human psychology. This means understanding how to successfully motivate the people in a way that understands and makes use of their natural tendencies. This, in turn, requires a form of “instruction” that goes beyond the conceptualization of the bureaucrat as an artisan fulfilling his niche purpose by also taking into account the person himself.  This Human Way is presented as an approach to government that addresses something more fundamental to human psychology than the base self-interest that punishments and rewards take into account, based on the Confucian virtues as well as the traditional structure of human society. While Zun deyi presents the basic overview and defence of this administrative theory of human psychology, these constitutive elements of instruction through ritual and music, psychology and motivation, and the traditional structure of human society are elaborated upon with much greater depth in the other three texts, as we will see below. The Great Constancy  The development of these theories that favoured political centralization raised the stakes for Confucian thinkers and demanded a response that was as conceptually nuanced as those of 174their opponents. The concept of the Human Way responded to these intellectual threats by arguing that Confucian cultural practices were uniquely suited to the task of government because they were based on a thorough understanding of human nature. Spurred on by the naturalistic political philosophy of people like Shen Dao, the Human Way provided a justification of Confucian practices that was also based on the premise of a consistent human disposition. However, while Shen Dao’s view argued against the premise of a normative order having been built into the world, the position of the four Ritual Authority manuscripts is more ambiguous. There are points at which the texts appear to be arguing that Heaven played a direct role in providing a moral framework to the inheritors of the cultural traditions of the Three Ages, and this placed upon the ruler a moral responsibility to protect and maintain this culture. On the other hand, the texts also acknowledge the contingent and constructed nature of these cultural traditions. It was ultimately the sages whose work resulted in this ideal cultural system. Recognizing the role of culture in shaping people’s moral dispositions, they took the existing and contingent social customs and improved them so that they could inculcate true ethical tendencies in people that were in line with the extrinsic moral values of “rightness” (yi 義). To this extent, the sages are not borrowing anything from Heaven, and may simply be using their genius to design a cultural system that is uniquely suited to reshape the innate biological nature of human beings into something morally superior.  By the time the Guodian texts were written, there was already a general, but not universal, trend underway towards viewing the concept of Heaven (Tian 天) as an expression of the natural world — something with less anthropomorphic agency than we see in the earlier 175writings of the Mozi or the Analects,  where Heaven directly intervenes in human affairs 296through the actions of ghosts and omens, or through the human agency of a figure like Confucius.  The late Warring States thinker Xunzi would take the starkest view in this direction 297with his argument that people should not concern themselves with trying to understand the purpose of Heaven, but should focus instead of their own actions in the world.  There is very 298good reason to believe that Xunzi was heavily influenced by the Guodian manuscripts,  and so 299it is worth considering his views here in some detail.  In terms of his perspective on the moral structure of the world, Xunzi appears at first glance to share more in common with Shen Dao than the Confucius of the Analects, who is portrayed as being on mission from Heaven to preserve and restore the culture (wen ⽂文) of the Zhou. This is revealed especially by his emphasis on the role of human agency in constructing the ethical rules of li. However, as Philip J. Ivanhoe notes, in Xunzi’s view: The Confucian rites not only made peace between human beings, they located human beings in a greater, harmonious natural system. This grand ecological ethic went well beyond our contemporary warnings about the danger of wasting and dispelling our natural resources; it was not merely prudential advice. Xunzi believed the rites showed human beings the unique  Or indeed in the probably contemporaneous text, Mengzi.296 Erica Brindley argues that the speculation we see about psychology in this period was prompted in part 297by the emergence of such cosmologies that “present the cosmos as a harmonious, impersonal, patterned, and all-encompassing entity. As such, they speak of the human relationship to the divine realm not in terms of arbitrary, personal relationships with deities but in terms of more universal, systematic correspondences among all objects and phenomena of the world,” “Music, Cosmos, and the Development of Psychology in Early China,” T'oung Pao 92.1 (2006), 5. This is made clearest in his essays, “Discourse on Heaven” (Tianlun 天論) and “Discourse on 298Ritual” (Lilun 禮論), but these ideas appear throughout his writings. Paul R. Goldin, “Xunzi in the Light of the Guodian Manuscripts,” Early China 25 (2000).299176way to cooperate with heaven and earth for the fulfillment of all three, a way that realized a design inherent in the universe itself.  300Thus, the rites are effectively the “cultural artifacts” produced by the sages — “social practices that were as much a part of their culture as the glorious bronzes one can hold and admire.”  301Ivanhoe notes that because Xunzi believe that these social practices were designed on the basis of a careful investigation and understanding of the natural world and human nature, they result in a kind of “happy symmetry” between human beings and the natural world of Heaven and Earth. Xunzi clearly sees human agency as being responsible for the design of these cultural practices, and yet he also seems to view the result as something that could perhaps only be described as “sacred.”  Xunzi, therefore, appears to see the social customs of the Zhou as both a contingent 302construction and yet also morally right in a cosmic sense. This is a tension that also appears in his discussion of the concept of “rightness,” a term used to describe the ethical norms that must be acquired through education. As Eric Hutton shows, Xunzi appears to believe that people are innately capable of developing a fondness (hao 好) for the ethical precepts of rightness even if this fondness is not predetermined by their inborn nature.  Rightness, a moral system that is 303predicated on the hierarchical structure and specific moral expectations that define the high  Philip J. Ivanhoe, “A Happy Symmetry: Xunzi’s Ethical Thought,” Journal of the American Academy 300of Religion 59.2 (1991), 310. Ivanhoe, “Happy Symmetry,” 313.301 As Ivanhoe notes, the well-ordered society run by the rules of li is described by Xunzi as a “godlike 302order” (dashen ⼤大神) in his essay “The Institutions of the King” (Wang zhi 王制), “Happy Symmetry,” 317. Eric Hutton, “Does Xunzi have a Consistent Theory of Human Nature?” in Virtue, Nature and Moral 303Agency in the Xunzi, ed. T.C. Kline III and Philip J. Ivanhoe (Indianapolis: Hackett, 2000).177culture of the Zhou, is also portrayed as the correct ethical ideal, but one that required the conscious deliberation and attention of the sages to discover and create.  304 The Ritual Authority manuscripts are also left to deal with the same ethical tension. They acknowledge Shen Dao’s view that administrative practices should be based on a naturalistic understanding of the world, while also asserting that the cultural traditions of the Zhou are based on a superior and more correct understanding of this natural world. In this sense, the Confucian view of ethics is simply more effectual than Shen Dao’s reliance on self-interest; however, the texts place greater emphasis on the role of Heaven in providing this moral system and they also emphasize the moral responsibility of the ruler to manage and protect this system. Depending on how the texts are read, this could suggest something half-way between the Analects, where a human agent like Confucius is required to restore and protect the transmitted culture of the Zhou, and Xunzi, for whom this system is entirely constructed by human beings and yet is also morally superior simply on the basis of the fact that it is the only approach that actually works. It is possible to at least partially resolve this apparent tension if we interpret the text’s view of Heaven in terms discussed by Erica Brindley, as a relatively impersonal “cosmos” with which human beings are capable of achieving a harmony.  305 As noted by both Ivanhoe, “Happy Symmetry,” and Hutton, “Human Nature,” for Xunzi, this moral 304framework assumes the hierarchical distinctions (fen 分) of a complex society, in which both social status and material allotments are divided up unequally but justly. Xunzi appears to be influenced by the view in the “Exalting Unity” chapter of the Mozi where the standardization of “standards” or “norms” (yi 義) under a king is described as the origin of stable society. Xunzi’s views on distinctions may also have been influenced by Shen Dao’s discussion of “allotments” and the necessity of the concept of private ownership of property (fen 分).  Brindley, “the Development of Psychology.”305178 Zun deyi opens, at least in its current arrangement of bamboo slips, with a terse statement about the qualifications necessary for a true political ruler: 尊德義,明乎民倫,可以為君。︒ One who honours virtue and rightness and has a clear understanding of the social order of the people is capable of being a ruler.  306Here, the ruler must hold virtue and morality in high regard, but just as importantly he must have a clear understanding of the importance and nature of the relationships that putatively define human society. This concept of the human social order (renlun ⼈人倫 or minlun 民倫) is central to the argument presented in the Ritual Authority manuscripts, and it is in the discussions of this concept that we see the clearest attempt to deal with the ambiguities presented by the Confucian defence of the historical authority of traditional cultural practices. This is the theme that is elaborated upon, explained and justified most clearly in the text that the editors of the Guodian manuscripts gave the title Liu de 六德 (“The Six Virtues”), in which human society is divided into six prescribed social positions, each of which is given a particular virtue that defines the ideal form of conduct for someone occupying that role. In the current arrangement of the Guodian corpus’s bamboo slips, it is actually in the Cheng zhi text that we find the clearest outline of this central theme — a fact that has led Chen Wei to argue that these strips should actually belong to the Liu de text.  This passage speaks of a “Great Constancy” that descends 307from Heaven and provides an ineluctable structure to human society:  Zun deyi, 1.306 Chen Wei, “Guanyu Guodian Chujian ‘Liu de’ zhupian bianlian de tiaozheng” 關於郭店楚簡《六307德》諸篇編連的調整, in Guodian Chujian gouge xueshu yantaohui lunwenji. For a discussion, see also Cook, Bamboo Texts, 596-598. As Cook notes, close attention to the calligraphic style of the two texts suggests that these passages do belong in Cheng zhi. This would help to support the view of a consistent philosophical position between these manuscripts, or at the very least between Cheng zhi and Liu de.179天降⼤大常,以理⼈人倫。︒制為君臣之義,著為⽗父⼦子之親,分為夫婦之辨。︒是故⼩小⼈人亂天常以逆⼤大道,君⼦子治⼈人倫以順天德。︒ Heaven sent down the Great Constancy in order to structure human society (renlun ⼈人倫). It establishes it in the form of the rightness of ruler and minister, it manifests it in the form of affection between father and son, it is divided in the form of the distinction between husband and wife. Thus, (when) the petty person brings disorder to Heaven’s Constancy it is in opposition to the Way; when the Gentleman brings order to the human relations it is in accordance with the Virtue of Heaven.  308The text goes on to use a quotation from the “Kang Gao” chapter of the Book of Documents (Shang shu 尚書) about the origins of the state’s punitive system, before explaining: 此⾔言也,⾔言不奉 ⼤大常者,⽂文王之刑莫厚(重)焉。︒是故君⼦子慎六位以祀天常。︒ 309What these words express is that King Wen’s heaviest punishments were reserved for those who did not uphold the Great Constancy. Thus, the Gentleman pays homage to Heaven’s Constancy by being conscientious about the six positions.  310Here, the structure of human society is portrayed as having been sent down by Heaven itself, and the ruler is given the imperative of defending and protecting this social structure, something for which King Wen made use of the punishments. This links the Great Constancy at the very least to the foundation of the Western Zhou state, but still leaves relatively ambiguous the question of Heaven’s role in the origins of the Confucian cultural system.   The concept of the Great Constancy deals with the ambiguity regarding the historical authority of the Zhou’s cultural practices through the framework of the “internal” (nei 內) relationships and the “external” (wai 外) relationships. The internal relationships are those inherent to the psychological tendencies of the inborn human nature, while the external  Cheng zhi, 31-33.308 Tentatively reading this character as 奉. See Cook, Bamboo Texts, 624 n169 for a discussion.309 Cheng zhi, 39-40.310180relationships are those of the public and socially constructed world, such as the relationship between ruler and minister. In this way, although the texts acknowledge the obvious fact that specific social customs are historically contingent and therefore on some level arbitrary, they also appear to be arguing that the specific structure of the political and public relationships of the Zhou state are also part of the moral framework provided by Heaven itself. These sacred cultural practices are also portrayed as being uniquely effective at ordering the state because they are based on a powerful insight into human nature. The Human Way is, therefore, at once a political approach that was historically “invented,” and an ethical system grounded in a belief in the role of Heaven in the achievements of the Zhou state.  In Liu de we find much greater detail about the nature and importance of this view of the human social order. This text is split into two sections, as indicated by a black section maker on slip 26. The first section describes the six core social positions into which human beings are divided, and explains the ideal virtues and forms of conduct that should define these roles, exhorting the ruler of the state to defend this structure and to employ it in managing the people. Finally, the six canonical texts of Zhou civilization are cited as evidence that this view of society has historical authority and must be defended at all costs. The second section of the text problematizes the purported tension that exists between the kin relationships, which are seen as rooted in the innate nature of human beings from birth, and the public relationships, which are seen as socially constructed and tenuous. This tension between the “internal” kin relationships and the “external” public relationships represents the key problem of complex society, which can only be resolved and managed through the application of the cultural traditions of ritual and 181music.  This tension also plays out in terms of the nature of the social and moral emotions that 311people should ideally feel towards others. When dealing within the private sphere of the family, a person should privilege their immediate and spontaneous feelings of care that are viewed as innate to human nature, while in external public relationships a person needs to acquire an external set of norms that are characterized by a firmness and decisiveness. Because these external norms belong to the contingent social world, developing a spontaneous and moral disposition of this sort can only be derived from careful moral instruction.  In the first section of this text, the “six positions” mentioned in Cheng zhi are presented in detail, and are shown to include the ruler, minister, father, son, husband and wife. To put the Way into effect requires understanding these relations in order to both govern the people and bring about public order and political authority, as well as to morally cultivate oneself: ⽣生民〔斯必有夫婦、︑⽗父⼦子、︑君臣〕,〔此〕六位也。︒有率⼈人者,有從⼈人者︔;有使⼈人者,有事⼈人〔者〕︔;〔有〕〔教〕者,有〔受〕 者︔;此六職也。︒既有夫六位也,以任此〔六職〕也,六職既分,以別六德。︒六德者〔.....⼤大者以治〕 ⼈人民,⼩小者以修其身。︒312為道者必由此。︒何謂六德︖?聖、︑智也,仁,義也,忠,信也。︒ From birth, among the people there must be husband and wife, father and son, ruler and minister; these are the six positions. There are those who lead and those who follow, those who command and those who serve, those who [instruct] and those who [receive (instruction)]; these are the six duties. Once the six positions are established, we can then assign (to them) the six duties; once the six duties have been apportioned, we can then distinguish the six virtues. As for the six virtues…. [on a large scale they can be used to order] the people, and on a small scale they can be used to cultivate oneself. One who would put the Way into practice must proceed from this. What are the six virtues? Sageliness and wisdom, goodness and rightness, loyalty and faithfulness.  313 Slingland, “Problem of Moral Spontaneity.”311 Following Cook and others in placing strip 47 between strips 10 and 1. Following Chen Wei, “Guanyu 312Guodian Chujian ‘Liu de,’” in placing ⼤大者以治 as a likely phrase here. See Cook, Bamboo Texts, 772 n11. Liu de, 6-10, 47, 1. This is tentatively following Cook’s ordering of the slips, which is uncertain.313182In terms of its importance to the ruler and the management of the government at a high level, these virtues are described as fundamentally necessary in order to properly morally instruct and punish the people, to bring about both public and inter-state order and to employ the people in the task of agriculture: 聖與智就矣,仁與義就矣,忠與信就〔矣〕。︒作禮樂,制刑法,教此民黎,使之有向也,非聖智者莫之能也。︒親⽗父⼦子,和⼤大臣,寢四鄰之抵牾,非仁義者莫之能也。︒聚⼈人民,任⼟土地,⾜足此民黎,⽣生死之⽤用,非忠信者莫之能也。︒君⼦子不變如(於?)⼈人道。︒ Sageliness goes along with wisdom; goodness goes along with rightness; loyalty goes along with faithfulness. To create ritual and music, establish the punishments and laws, to use these to instruct the masses and to command them and so give them direction: none but the sagacious and the wise are capable of this. To create affection between fathers and sons, unite the great ministers, and mollify the conflicts of the four neighbouring polities: none but the good and the righteous are capable of doing this. To bring the people together, cultivate the land, and make this sufficient for the people and so employ them in life and death:  none but 314the loyal and faithful are able to do this. The Gentleman does not alter this Human Way.  315The text then goes on to describe the ideal forms of conduct for each of these six positions and to explain what the precise moral demands are for each social role. For the ruler, rightness (yi 義) is key, and should be employed when he chooses who to employ and advance with the state apparatus. The text is unfortunately damaged at this point, and the beginning of the passage is missing, and yet the passage is notable in the way that it appears to be suggesting that the ruler needs to make his choices based on purely meritocratic terms and not based on his own personal preferences:  Or, just as likely, the meaning of this passage may not refer to “employing the people in life and 314death,” but “to ensure they have enough from life to death.” For a discussion, see Cook, Bamboo Texts, 775 n22. Liu de, 1-5.315183......〔諸〕 ⽗父兄,任者(諸)⼦子弟,⼤大藝者(諸)⼤大官,⼩小材藝者(諸)⼩小官,因⽽而施祿焉,316使之⾜足以⽣生,⾜足以死,謂之君