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Introduction: five trends in Confucian studies

For over a decade, Confucian studies have gone through several evolutions and developments. From 2010 to today, this area has delivered a number of the fine scholars. This special issue of JET will examine the works of those Confucian scholars who have advanced significantly in the last few years in certain genres, and also share our thoughts on where certain tendencies are heading in the near future. For this purpose, we will analyze and compare five current trends in Confucian studies: global-contextualism, Asian-modernism, Asian-Americanism,multi-comparativism, and classical-textualism. We will offer an overview of these five trends revealing how each of them comprise a significant movement in Confucian studies. In addressing each, we will provide certain theoretical critiques and the responses to those critiques. The main thrust of this issue is to examine the similarities and differences among (between) those scholarly inquiries as well as to justify those research programs which are debatable, controversial and even confusing.

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