Kurzbeschreibung: Deutsch/Bontekoe, A companion to world philosophies

Eliot Deutsch und Ronald Bontekoe habe 1997 einen Einführungsband zur globalen Philosophiegeschichte unter dem folgenden Titel herausgegeben: A companion to world philosophies

Auch für diesen Band wird der Plural Philosophien in den Vordergrund gestellt. Programmatisch betonen die Herausgeber das Folgende:

“The purpose of this work is to provide a sophisticated, one-volume companion to the study of select non-Western philosophical traditions. It has become increasingly evident to many teachers and students of philosophy as well as to general readers that philosophy is not the exclusive province of the West; that indeed other traditions have a depth and range comparable to Western thought and exhibit distinctive features, the knowledge of which can enrich philosophical understanding and creativity wherever it occurs. This volume will strive at once to introduce some of the finest thinking within and about non-Western traditions to teachers. students and general readers, and to offer interpretations and insights relevant to the work of other scholars in the field." (A companion to world philosophies. Hg. v. Eliot Deutsch u. Ronald Bontekoe. Malden 1997, S. XII.)

“This Companion volume is organized in a way that will give the reader some knowledge of the historical background and contemporary situation with respect to each of the selected traditions. It will also show some of the distinctive ways of thinking developed within those traditions. by focusing on a number of specific topics: namely, conceptions of reality and divinity, of causality, of truth, the nature of rationality, of selfhood, of humankind and nature, ideas of the good. social and political ideas, and aesthetic values. These topics, while covering a broad range, do not, of course, come near to exhausting the philosophical content of these traditions.

The accounts given in this volume are all in English. The traditions themselves, needless to say, were developed within their own indigenous languages and it is extremely important for us not to assume that all basic ideas and concepts translate readily from one language to another. Many of the presentations will make that clear, but one must always be on one’s guard to note that the usage of certain similar-sounding terminology (as given in translation) does not guarantee that the same philosophical issue is being addressed. When Western philosophers today worry about the nature of the self, say in terms of the problem of other minds, they occupy a quite different philosophical space than did the classical Chinese, who understood personhood as socially grounded, or the Indian philosophers in their speculations concerning the nature of human consciousness. But it is precisely these complexities that make the comparative philosophical enterprise so exciting.

One last note: reading secondary accounts about a tradition is no substitute for the harder work of studying the primary texts themselves - and indeed, of coming to an understanding that a philosophical text itself may mean different things in different traditions. For example, in the Indian tradition the major philosophical work is presented within commentarial traditions identified with the various schools rather than. with some notable exceptions, separate treatises with a distinctive authorial style of the sort that we are familiar with in the modern Western context. Philosophical truth itself was not something so much discovered as recovered within the framework of a given school of thought." (Ebd., S. IV.)

Der inhaltliche Aufbau des Bandes versucht, sowohl systematische wie auch historische Aspekte einzubeziehen und ist in der Hinsicht durchaus bemerkenswert und innovativ: 

Part I Historical Background:

1. Chinese philosophy: a synoptic view, 2. A history of Indian philosophy, 3. Classical Polynesian thinking, 4. African philosophy: a historical overview, 5. A survey of Buddhist thought, 6. Islamic philosophy: an overview.

Part II Philosophical Topics: 

A. The Chinese tradition: 1. Ideas of the good in Chinese philosophy, 2. The Chinese conception of selfhood, 3. Human beings and nature in traditional Chinese thought, 4. Causation in Chinese philosophy, 5. Chinese socio-political ideals, 6. Reality and divinity in Chinese philosophy, 7. Reason and principle in Chinese philosophy: an interpretation of Li, 8. The way and the truth, 9. Chinese aesthetics

B. The Indian tradition: 1. Socio-political thought in classical India, 2. Indian conceptions of reality and divinity, 3. Rationality in Indian philosophy, 4. Humankind and nature in Indian philosophy, 5. The idea of the good in Indian thought, 6. Indian aesthetics: a philosophical survey, 7. The self and person in Indian philosophy, 8. Truth in Indian philosophy

C. The Buddhist tradition: 1. Ideas of the good in Buddhist philosophy, 2. Reflections on social and political ideals in Buddhist philosophy, 3. Causality in Buddhist philosophy, 4. Humankind and nature in Buddhism, 5. Buddhist reality and divinity, 6. The Buddhist concept of self. 7. Rationality in Buddhist thought, 8. Buddhist perspectives on ontological truth

D. The Islamic tradition: 1. Truth and Islamic thought, 2. Islamic aesthetics, 3. Reality and divinity in Islamic philosophy, 4. Selfhood/personhood in Islamic philosophy, 5. The concept of the good in Islamic philosophy, 6. Causality and Islamic thought, 7. Rationality in Islamic philosophy

Part III The Contemporary Situation: 

1. Contemporary Chinese philosophy, 2. Contemporary Japanese philosophy, 3. The contemporary Indian situation, 4. Contemporary Polynesian thinking, 5. Current trends and perspectives in African philosophy, 6. Contemporary Buddhist philosophy, 7. Contemporary Islamic thought

In Zusammenarbeit mit zahlreichen Gelehrten und SpezialistInnen für die verschiedenen Themenbereiche, die hier nicht alle namentlich genannt werden können, ist den Herausgebern eine neue Darstellungsform für das Feld globaler Philosophiegeschichtsschreibung gelungen, die einen bedenkenswerten Weg zwischen historischer und systematischer Darstellung findet.

(Auszug aus: Elberfeld, Rolf: Philosophiegeschichtsschreibung in globaler Perspektive. Felix Meiner Verlag: Hamburg 2017, S. 308–11)