Trenchant, sophisticated, and cynical, Han Feizi has been read in every age and is still of interest today when people are more than ever Get the E-Book. Han Feizi has 60 ratings and 8 reviews. This edition exclude Current affairs remind me of this book, as you start to see quotations of his appearing on social. Han Feizi is a collection of writing attributed to Han Fei (circa ‒ BC) of Eastern Zhou. A student of Confucian philosopher Xunzi, Han Fei collected the writing of his predecessors of the pre-Qin Type of Item. Books.

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Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Preview — Han Feizi by Han Fei. Basic Writings by Han Fei. Trenchant, sophisticated, and cynical, Han Feizi has been read in every age and is still of interest today when people are more than ever concerned with the nature and use of power.

His handb Trenchant, sophisticated, and cynical, Han Feizi has been read in every age and is still of interest today when people are more than ever concerned with the nature and use of power. His handbook for the ruler deals with the problems of strengthening and preserving the state, the way of the ruler, the use of power, and punishment and favor.

Ironically, the ruler most influenced by Han Feizi, the king of Qin, eventually sent Han Feizi to prison, where he later committed suicide.

Paperbackpages. Published May 14th by Columbia University Press first published To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about Han Feiziplease sign up. Lists with This Book. This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Jun 28, Caroline rated it really liked it Shelves: Han Feizi earnestly sent this advice to his king, the ruler of the small state of Han.

It might not have mattered anyway, but Han ignored his advice and fell to the neighboring king of Qin, who became the first Emperor of a unified China in B. Han Feizi would have a state that has no place for commerce, the arts, religion, or anything other than agriculture and war.

One has to remember the threatening times in which he lived, but even so it is a ruthless prescription. He perfected the Legalist doctrines that would guarantee the strength of the state through the ruler retaining absolute power in his own hands.

Works of Han Feizi

This power derived not through the ruler participating in the actual administration, but in giving his ministers and their subordinates no room for independent judgement or discretion. They must fill an exactly defined role, and deviate not at all from any programs they proposed to carry out.

In this way officials could not be susceptible to bribes for things such as being excused from military service, and they would have insufficient scope for cabals. Han Feizi has a very low opinion of the people, and dismisses any notion that the ruler needs to shape his policies to gain their trust. All this sounds insanely ruthless, but this book is a classic because the examples and reasoning he employs are very convincing. Watson provides a concise and graceful introduction that provides the necessary historical and philosophical context for this work.

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Han Feizi has been read ever since the book was written about BC, and is well worth a look. Mar 31, Emily Carroll rated it really liked it Shelves: Han Feizi was the creator of the Legalist philosophy. Unlike many earlier philosophers, it is believed that he wrote the text primarily on his own.

I found this to be particularly interesting because Xunzi was a Confucian philosopher and there is a great rift between the two schools of thought.

For example, like Xunzi, Han Feizi gives strict titles for actions and behaviors and makes it appear that you have no choice and can make no argument with what is ultimately his opinion on the matter. I will demonstrate the similarities below with examples from the two text.

Page Unfortunately this is something I find to be very annoying because it gives me a sense of taking away free will gook personal opinion. But this really book sense with Han Feizi because legalism believes that people are naturally evil and will always try to avoid punishment while in the process of chasing gains.

It supports a strict law and harsh punishments. A lot of the book read like a guide book for rulers on the proper way to rule, as well as punish.

Han Feizi: Basic Writings

Very much like The Prince, though perhaps a bit more extreme and harsh. Decent translation, straightforward and precise. The choice of chapters is bit confusing. This edition exclude Current affairs remind me of this book, as you start to see quotations of his appearing on social media condemning the deployment of THAAD.

The quoted chapter is not included in this English edition, title of which shall be translated as “signs of collapsing”: Teizi this classic written that time is much more essential for understanding China’s behavior pattern particularly in foreign relations than those of Confucius.

You deal with claimants bilaterally, allying with one against some certain others. Apr 18, Brandon rated boko it was amazing Shelves: I’d known about the Legalists since Feii of the Dragon King: Magic Tree House Book 14, when the Qin emperor burned all those bamboo slips of rival schools.

Han Feizi: Basic Writings by Han Fei

I thought they were the historical Bad Guys, advocating ruthless tyranny. It turns out Han Fei’s thought, as represented by the selections here, is not only much hzn nuanced, but even uncomfortably persuasive.

He also has some surprisingly modern observations, like how it was easy for the ancients to be benevolent because there were fewer people and therefore less competition for resources, or how people are forced by necessity to certain crimes, which fact is neither good nor bad: In any case, it’s always a pleasure to read ancient philosophy, especially examples as straightforward and digestible as these.

Han Fei Tzu was a scholar who propounded Legalism – a strict adherance to the law by way of benefits and punishments to create and maintain an efficient state.

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The First Emperor of Ch’in admired his writings and appears to have taken some of his advice to heart – it was known for its brutal administration – and lasted but a short time. Much of the basics of proper administration are here and appear to be common sense. Yet his ideals lack humanity. He excoriates benevolence and mercy as being the Han Fei Tzu was a scholar who propounded Legalism – a strict adherance to the law by way of benefits and punishments to create and maintain an efficient state.

He excoriates benevolence and mercy as being the seeds of evil. If we were mere machines, Han Fei Tzu’s philosophy would be ideal. Fortunately, his ideals have been relegated to the dustbin of history. Legalist would work for third world countries for a while. Dec 15, Markus rated it really liked it Shelves: Gem of a book.

The intellectual development of the Chinese years ago is simply phenomenal. David Jonas rated it it was amazing Apr 29, Erin Cao rated it it was amazing Jan 01, Andrew rated it liked it Aug 25, John Warner rated it it was amazing Nov 23, Jenny rated it liked it Jan 28, Benjamin rated it really liked it Feb 18, Emily rated it liked it Jan 20, Aurelio rated it it was amazing Mar 25, Joan Guldin rated it really liked it May 14, Daniel rated it it was amazing Jan 25, Josh Eskew rated it it was amazing Aug 20, Joe rated it it was ok May 23, Luis Henrique Sacchi Guadagnin rated it it was amazing Dec 23, Jordan Peacock rated it liked it Jan 30, Michael Lloyd-Billington rated it really liked it Jan 25, Cleo rated it liked it Oct 10, Michael Lloyd-Billington rated it really liked it Jan 19, Surgat rated it really liked it Jan 02, Alan rated it really liked it Jul 24, Eshan Tewari rated it really liked it Sep 21, Corin Suta rated it liked it Feb 12, There are no discussion topics on this book yet.

Han borrowed Shang Yang’s emphasis on laws, Shen Buhai’s emphasis on technique, and Shen Dao’s ideas on authority and prophecy, emphasizing that the autocrat will be able to achieve firm control over the state with the mastering of his predecessors methodologies: Despite its outcast status throughout the history of imperial China, Han Fei’s political theory continued to heavily influence every dynasty afterwards, and the Confucian ideal of a rule without laws was never again realized.

Books by Han Fei. Trivia About Han Feizi: No trivia or quizzes yet. Quotes from Han Feizi: To try to use the ways of a generous and lenient government to rule the people of a critical age is like trying to drive a runaway horse without using reins or whip. Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account.