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The Book of Lord Shang

The Book of Lord Shang. a Classic of the Chinese School of Law translated by J.J.L. Duyvendak

With a long introduction covering what is said in Chinese history about Lord Shang, and discussion of the text (both in content and existing text) before the translation of this classic of Legalist thought.

Strict, severe, contemptuous of tradition and naively trusting in the power of law to make a man good. . . .

Full of laws that, it assures us, will force people to practice agricultural labor, which much abuse for the "lice" that destroy the kingdom (such as care for the elderly, listening to music, sophistry, and brotherly duty). The importance of severe punishment for minor offenses (to ward off serious offenses), ensuring that punishments outnumber rewards on the order of nine to one, and clarity in law. Much discussion of war.
Tags: non-fiction: philosophy, non-fiction: politics, primary source review
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