Sunday, July 31, 2016

468. Benjamin Franklin: The First Publisher of Confucius Work

Confucius statues have been seen  probably all over the United States today. In addition to the Supreme Court building, one can find many Confucius statues in many places. There is a Confucius statue in a park, called Chinese Cultural Garden in Cleveland. The Cleveland Public Library invited me to deliver a lecture on Chinese cultural influence on North America several years ago. After my presentation, Carolyn, the librarian,  guided me to the Chinese Cultural Garden to visit the Statue of Confucius in the garden. However I didn't see the stature, for it was covered and was under repair. The City of Cleveland made it a big event when the repair was completed and Confucius statue was reinstalled in the Garden. One still can find the article of reporting the event. The event took place on October 3, 2014. More information regarding the event can be accessed through this article,  Confucius returns to his place in Cleveland's Chinese Cultural Garden.

However, I was attracted by the Statue of Benjamin Franklin on the campus of the University of Pennsylvania on July 29, 2016. The statue captures the historical moment when Franklin was reading his own weekly newspaper, Pennsylvania Gazette. My readers who are familiar with Dr. Dave Wang's work know that Franklin published some chapters of Confucius work in his widely welcomed newspaper in Pennsylvania and other colonies in North America in 1737. Below you can tell that I was trying to find out what Franklin was reading, chapters of Confucian moral philosophy or his own works enlightened by Confucius moral principles? I am sure that you will find the answer on your own as soon as you see the statue in person.

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