Monday, April 01, 2013

Fragment 1042013

Chinese categorisation:

Baojia social categories in Guanxi province in the 1840s included the following categories:

those who are truly talented and knowledgeable
those who are foolish and cowardly
those who are violent
those who know things
those who are afraid of things
those who like things to happen
those who are troublemakers
wandering bandits from Guangdong province
guest people


Sam said...

Hmmm. Theres an intersection of all those circles in any good Venn Diagram, and that seems to be the place you'd want to be.

Addison Hart said...

Quite remarkable; Borgesian, really. I presume this is a description of xiangyue methods, but is there any chance of a citation?

Murr said...

I found this in Jonathan Spence's book: "God's Chinese Son" p.104. It immediately made me think of Borges as well.

Addison Hart said...

Excellent! Thank you.

It reminded me in particular of his Celestial Emporium of Benevolent Knowledge, in which the emperor's animals are divided into:

Those that belong to the Emperor,
Embalmed ones,
Those that are trained,
Suckling pigs,
Fabulous ones,
Stray dogs,
Those included in the present classification,
Those that tremble as if they were mad,
Innumerable ones,
Those drawn with a very fine camelhair brush,
Those that have just broken a flower vase,
Those that from a long way off look like flies.

Murr said...

You're welcome.