- 1987 PhD University of Hawai’i at Manoa, Comparative Philosophy
- 1982 MA San Diego State University, Philosophy
- 1978 MDiv Conservative Baptist Theological Seminary, Denver
- 1973 BA University of Denver, American Studies
Professional Positions (since 1987)
- Director, Centre for Sino-Christian Studies
- Fellow, Hong Kong Academy of the Humanities Fellow, David C. Lam for East-West Studies
- Associate Editor, Journal of Chinese Philosophy
- Distinguished Adjunct Researcher, IPCLC, Renmin University
- Interdisciplinary Studies of Modern and Contemporary Sinologists' Classical Translations and Chinese Works
Jointly appointed as Professor in the Religion and Philosophy
Department as well as the Humanities course at Hong Kong Baptist
University, Lauren Pfister has lived in Hong Kong with his family
since 1987. Serving as Associate Editor for the Journal of Chinese
Philosophy since 1997, he has continued to pursue research in 19th
and 20th century Ruist philosophy, the history of sinology, as well
as comparative philosophical and comparative religious studies. He
serves also as the Director of the Center for
Sino-Christian Research at Hong Kong Baptist University and a
Research Fellow of the Research Center for Chinese Philosophy and
Culture at the Chinese University of Hong Kong.
Recent publications include works on the development of
philosophical hermeneutics in Chinese contexts, questions related to
environmental ethics in traditional Chinese teachings, and a
philosophical account of the multi-dimensional nature of
transformation in Chinese philosophy and culture. Long term research
interests include the role of Christian missionary-scholars in China
(especially James Legge (理雅各 1815-1897), Ernst Faber (花之安1839-1899),
Richard Wilhelm (衛禮賢1873-1930), Seraphin Couvreur (顧賽芬 1835-1919),
and Solomon Caesar Malan (馬智庫1812-1894) among others), their
relationship to the emergence of the “philosophy” and “religious
studies” in modern China, , as well as evaluative studies of Feng
Youlan’s (馮友蘭1895-1990) philosophical system, New
Principle(-centered) Learning 新理學, and his various histories of
A two volume work entitled Striving for ‘The Whole Duty of Man’:
James Legge and the Scottish Protestant Encounter with China was
published by Peter Lang in 2004. A full Chinese translation of this
work is now being prepared by a small team of Chinese translators
for Commercial Press in Beijing. Another monograph is being written
by a six-member international research team will present the first
full account of Richard Wilhelm’s life and sinological contributions
in English. Plans for a multivolume set including selections of the
major publications and unpublished works of James Legge is now being
worked out for publication before the bicentennial of Legge’s birth
- World Religions: An Introduction
- World Religions and the Meaning of Life
- Confucian-Christian Dialogue and Interaction
- Philosophy of Christian Religion
- Major Biblical Themes
- Approaches to the Study of Religion
- Religion in Modern Society
- Religion in Secular Society
- Philosophy of Religion
- Christianity and Asian Cultures
- Introduction to Philosophy
- Major Streams in Western Philosophy
- Major Streams in Chinese Philosophy
- Great Thinkers on Life
- Man in the Modern World
- Human Self-Discovery
- Science, Technology, and Society
- East-West Philosophy (team taught)
- The Story of Chinese Philosophy (in Cantonese and English)
- The Story of Western Philosophy
- Moral Leadership
- Existence and Reality
- Graduate Classes: (In Master of Liberal Arts and Ethics)
Cross-modular Topics in Liberal Studies (focusing on Independent
Enquiry, team taught)
| IV. Research
Fellowships and Honours (given and announced since 1987)
- 2007-2008 Visiting Professor and Researcher, Institute of the
Science of Religion (Institut fur Religionswissenschaft), Berne
- 2005 Visitor (one summer month), Center for Applied Philosophy
Ethics (CAPPE), Melbourne University, Australia
- 2005 Award: “Outstanding Books of 2004 for Mission Studies” for
the Whole Duty of Man in the International Bulletin for Missionary
Research (Yale University), 29:1 (January 2005), p. 43.
- 2000-01 Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft Fellowship for Visiting
at the Sinology Seminar, Bonn University, Germany
- 2000 Two month Visiting Fellowship at the School of Philosophy,
of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia (starting July 2000)
- 1998 Short-term Fellowship to Manchester College, Oxford (HKBU)
- 2013-2015 Interdisciplinary Studies of Modern and Contemporary Sinologists' Classical Translations and their Chinese Works (HKBU Interdisciplinary Research Scheme, funded for HK$1,500,000)
- 2005-2008 Earmarked Research Grant for Richard Wilhelm Research
(Hong Kong Government’s Commission for ERG)
- 2005-2007 Grant for Translating Legge Book (HKBU Faculty
- 2003-2004 Germany/Hong Kong Joint Research Grant for Project
Missionary-Sinological Translations of Richard Wilhelm and
- 1993-96 National Endowment for the Humanities (USA), Legge
- 1992-97 Research Grant Commission (Hong Kong), Legge Project
| V. Publications
- Editor, “Modern and Contemporary Chinese Hermeneutics”, Journal of Chinese Philosophy 34:1 (March 2007). 149 pages.
- Editor, Hermeneutic Thinking in Chinese Philosophy (Vol.
1 in the Journal Supplement Series to the Journal of Chinese
Philosophy) (Boston: Blackwell, 2006). 159 pages.
- Striving for ‘The Whole Duty of Man’: James Legge (1815-1897)
and the Scottish Protestant Encounter with China. Vol. 34 in the
Scottish Studies International Series edited by Horst W. Drescher
(Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang, 2004). Two volumes, totaling 758
- The Encyclopedia of Language and Linguistics
Chan Sin-wai and David E. Pollard, eds., An Encyclopedia of
Translation: Chinese-English, English-Chinese Translation,
Chinese University Press, 1995.
Jonathan Z. Smith, ed., HarperCollins Dictionary of Religion,
HarperCollins Press, 1995.
A. Scott Moreau, ed., The Evangelical Dictionary of World
Missions, Baker Book House Co., 2000.
J. M. Y. Simpson and J. F. A. Sawyer, eds., Concise
Encyclopedia of Language and Religion (Amsterdam: Elsevier, May
Antonio Cua, ed., Encyclopedia of Chinese Philosophy (New
York: Routledge, 2003).
Xinzhong Yao, ed., RoutledgeCurzon Encyclopedia of
Confucianism, 2 Volumes (London and NewYork: Routledge and
Curzon Press, 2003).
Hillerbrand, Hans J. ed., Encyclopedia of Protestantism,
4 Volumes (New York/ London: Routledge, 2004).
Other Articles (Beyond Special Contributions)
Topics of Articles include Philosophical Themes (European, Chinese,
American, and comparative traditions); Issues in the Study of World
Religions; Sinological Themes; Translations from Chinese and French
into English on Chinese Philosophical Themes. Most articles were
written in English, but there have also been 10 articles translated by
others into Chinese, 2 into German, 1 into Croatian.
Overall, besides over 30 chapters in books and proceedings which
have been published, there are also over 50 articles appearing in the
following academic journals:
; Buddhist-Christian Studies;
Bulletin of the History and Philology Institute of the Academia
Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies;
Bulletin of the Scottish Institute of Missionary Studies;
Chinese Graduate School of Theology Journal; Chinese
Ching Feng; Darshana International (India); Filozofska Istrazivania (Yugoslavia) History and Culture (Hongkong); The Hong Kong Linguist;
Humanist Newsletter; International Bulletin of Missionary
Journal of Chinese Philosophy; Journal of Chinese
Journal of Classical Sociology;
Journal of Foguang University: Humanities and Social Sciences
Journal of the History of Christianity in Modern China;
Journal of the Hong Kong Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society;
minima sinica; Monumenta Serica;
Newsletter of the Institute of Chinese Literature and Philosophy
at Academia Sinica;
Orientierung (Bonn, Germany);
Oxford University’s Institute of Modern Chinese Studies (Working
The Pelican Record (Oxford); Philosophy East and West; ReligiousStudies News (USA); Shijing Studies (Tokyo,
Japan); Thought [思]
(Hongkong); Sino-Western Cultural Relations Journal;
Studies of Chinese Classical Learning (Taiwan);
Synthesis Philosophica (Yugoslavia);
- Asian Thought and Society
“James Legge’s Metrical Book of Poetry”, Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies 60:1
(February 1997), pp. 64-85.
- “The Different Faces of Contemporary Religious Confucianism: An
Account of the Diverse Approaches of Some Major Twentieth Century
Chinese Confucian Scholars”, Journal of Chinese Philosophy 22:1 (March 1995), pp. 5-79.
“A Transmitter but not a Creator: The Creative Transmission of
Protestant Biblical Traditions by Ho Tsun-Sheen (1817-1871)” in
Irene Eber, et. al., eds., Bible in Modern China: The Literary
and Intellectual Impact (Nettetal: Steyler Verlag, 1999), pp.
“Discovering Monotheistic Metaphysics: The Exegetical
Reflections of James Legge (1815-1897) and Lo Chung-fan (d. circa
1850)” in Ng On-cho, et. al., eds., Imagining Boundaries:
Changing Confucian Doctrines, Texts and Hermeneutics (Albany:
SUNY Press, 1999), pp. 213-254.
(Chinese version of #16) 載林啟彥, 黃文江主編 «王韜與近代世界»
(香港: 香港教育圖書公司, 2000), 頁117至 147.
“Mediating Word, Sentence, and Scope without Violence: James
Legge’s Understanding of `Classical Confucian’ Hermeneutics” in Tu
Ching-i, ed., Classics and Interpretations: The Hermeneutic
Traditions in Chinese Culture (New Brunswick, New Jersey:
Transaction Publishers, 2000), pp. 371-382.
“Ernst Faber’s Sinological Orientalism” in Ricardo K. S. Mak and
Danny S. L. Paau, eds., Sino-German Relations Since 1800:
Multidisciplinary Explorations (Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang,
2000), pp. 93-107.
“Re-examining Whole Person Cultivation: Reconsidering the
Master Kong’s ‘Knowing the Heavenly Decree’ and Yeshuah’s
‘Beatitudes’”, Ching Feng 1:1 (New Series, Spring 2000), pp. 69-96.
“Critical Assessment of James Legge’s
(1815-1897) Translation of the Spring and Autumn Annals and
its Zuo Commentary” (“理雅各氏英譯春秋左傳析論”) co-authored with
Líu Jiāhé劉家和 and Shào
Dōngfāng 邵東方, in Jīngxué yánjiū lùncóng 《經學研究論叢》 (Collected Essays of Investigations into
Scriptural Learning), 8 (September 2000), pp. 263-290.
Republished in revised version in 劉家和著《史學， 經學與思想 : 在世界史背景下對於中國古代歷史文化的思考》 (北京:
“Christianity and Daoism in Modern Chinese Culture:
Encounters, Debates, and Explorations” (“現代中國文化中基督教與道教的相遇, 論辯, 相互探索”) in Lo Ping-cheung 羅秉祥and Zhào Dūnhuá 趙敦華eds., Christianity
in Modern Chinese and Western Cultures 《基督教與近代中西文化》 (Běijīng:
Běijīng University Press, 2000), pp. 398-447. Article translated
in Chinese by Wong King-fan .
- “Feng Youlan’s New Principle Learning and his
Histories of Chinese Philosophy”, in Chung-ying Cheng and Nick
Bunnin, eds., Contemporary Chinese Philosophy (Oxford:
Blackwell Pub. Co., 2002), pp. 165-187.
- “From the ‘Three Teachings’ to ‘Chinese Philosophy’”,
in Hú Jūn 胡君ed., Chuántǒng yǔ chuāngxīn: Dì sì jiè Féng Yǒulán xuéshù sīxiǎng
yántǎohuì lùnwénjí 《傳統與創新: 第四屆馮友蘭學術思想研討會論文集》 (Tradition
and Creativity: Collected Essays from the Fourth Research
Conference on Féng Yǒulán’s Academic Ideas) (Beijing: Beijing
University Press, 2002), pp. 137-166.
- “From Derision to Respect: The Hermeneutic Passage
within James Legge’s (1815-1897) Ameliorated Evaluation of Master
Kong (‘Confucius’)”, Bochumer Jahrbuch zur Ostasienforschung 26 (2002), pp. 53-88.
- “The Mengzian Matrix for Accommodationist Missionary
Apologetics: Identifying the Cross-cultural Linkage in Evangelical
Protestant Discourse within the Chinese writings of James Legge
(1815-1897), He Jinshan (1817-1871), and Ernst Faber (1839-1899),” Monumenta Serica 50 (2002), pp. 391-416.
- “Personal Roles within Transformative Contexts:
Exploring the Ethical Significance of Supramoral Experiences in
Easts and Wests”, in Rolf Elberfeld and Günter Wohlfart, eds., Komparative Ethik: Das gute Leben zwischen den Kulturen (Comparative
Ethics: The Good Life Between Cultures) (Köln: Chōra, 2002),
- “A Modern Chinese Philosophy Built upon Critically
Received Traditions: Feng Youlan’s New Principle-Centered Learning
and the Question of Its Relationship to Contemporary New Ruist
(“Confucian”) Philosophies,” in John Makeham, ed., New
Confucianism: A Critical Examination (Houndsmill, England:
Palgrave Macmillan, 2003), pp. 165-184.
- “The Creative Potential and Philosophical Importance
of Going Beyond a “China-West” Philosophical Focus in 21st Century Chinese Philosophy”, in Fāng Kèlì 方克立, ed., Chinese
Philosophy and the Trends of the 21st Century Civilization (Běijīng:
Commercial Press, 2003), pp. 603-624.
- “20th Century Contributions in Chinese Philosophy of
Religion(s): From Deconstructive Contradiction to Constructive
Reconsideration,” Journal of Chinese Philosophy 30: 3-4
(September/December 2003), pp. 541-553.
- “Reconsidering Three Faces of the “Revived One” from
Mid-19th Century China,” in Roman Malek, ed., The Chinese Face
of Jesus Christ, Volume 2 (Nettetal: Steyler Verlag, 2003),
- “Rethinking Mission in China: James Hudson Taylor and
Timothy Richard” in Andrew Porter, ed., The Imperialist
Horizons of British Protestant Missions, 1880-1914 (Grand
Rapids: William B. Eerdmanns Pub. Co., 2003), pp. 183-212.
述而不作: 近代中國第一位新教神學家何進善 (1817-1871)」 載 伊愛蓮等著 蔡錦圖編譯《聖經與近代中國》(香港: 漢語聖經協會，2004), 頁132至162。
** As of January 2004 this article was placed on HKBU website
with lantern slide collection, Archive for the Study of the History
of Christianity in China, see www.hkbu.edu.hk/lib/electronicálanternápdfápfister.pdf
“Nineteenth Century Ruist Metaphysical Terminology and
the Sino-Scottish Connection in James Legge's Chinese Classics”
in Michael Lackner and Natascha Vittinghoff, eds. Mapping
Meanings: The Field of New Learning in Late Qing China (Leiden:
Brill, 2004), pp. 615-638.
“Protestant Ethics among Chinese Missionaries,
Problems of Indigenization, and the Spirit of Academic
Professionalization” Journal of Classical Sociology 2:1
(March 2005), pp. 93-114.
「攀登漢學中喜瑪拉雅山的巨擘 – 從比較理雅各 (1815-1897) 和尉禮賢
翻譯及詮釋儒教古典經文中所得之啟迪」 (“Scaling the
Sinological Himalayas: Insights Drawn from Comparisons of James
Legge’s (1815-1897) and Richard Wilhelm’s (1873-1930) Translations
and Interpretations of Ruist Canonical Literature”)
載《中央研究院中國文哲研究所通訊》(The Newsletter of the Institute for
Chinese Literature and Philosophy of Academia Sinica) 15:2 (2005年六月), 頁21至57.
(Published in September 2005)
“Reconsidering Metaethical and Ethical Dimensions of
Play and Sport from a Comparative Philosophical Perspective”, Orientierung 2/2005 (December 2005), pp. 1-22.
“Hermeneutics: Philosophical Understanding and Basic
Orientations” in Lauren F. Pfister, ed. Hermeneutic Thinking in
Chinese Philosophy (Boston: Blackwell, 2006), pp. 3-23. (First
Volume in Journal Supplement Series for Journal of Chinese
“Sensing Love’s Tensions and Transformation: Another
Look at Spiritual Depths in Chen Kaige’s Movie, Together”, Chinese Cross Currents《神州交流》(English
and Chinese) 4:3 (July 2007), pp. 112-125.
“Brothers in the Spirit”, in Marc Hermann, Christian
Schwermann, and Jari Grosse-Ruyken, eds., Zurück zur Freude.
Studien zur chinesischen Literatur und Lebenswelt und ihrer
Rezeption in Ost und West. Festschrift für Wolfgang Kubin (Nettetal:
Steyler Verlag, 2007), pp. 55 - 82.
“Environmental Ethics and Some Probing Questions for
Traditional Chinese Philosophy,“ in Karyn Lai, ed., New
Interdisciplinary Perspectives in Chinese Philosophy (Journal
of Chinese Philosophy Supplement for 2007), pp. 101-123.
“In the Eye of a Tornado: Lessons Learned from
Critiques of Christian Missionaries”, Ching Feng 8:1-2
(2007), pp. 91-116.
“A Bio-Philosophical Profile of Chung-ying Cheng” in
Ng On-cho, ed., The Imperative of Understanding: Chinese
Philosophy, Comparative Philosophy, and Onto-hermeneutics (New
York: Global Scholarly Publications, 2008), pp. 61-72.
“Philosophical Explorations of the Transformative
Dimension in Chinese Culture,” Journal of Chinese Philosophy, Vol.
35, No 4, 2008, pp. 663-682.
|Graduate Students engaged at HKBU
- PhD Students Co-supervised at HKBU: 1 Student
(currently); 4 students so far.
- MPhil Students Supervised at HKBU: 1 student so far.
BA Honours Projects Advised [and those Evaluated]
- Since 1991, 37 projects (8 in English; 29 in Chinese)
advised, [1 English and 22 Chinese evaluated as Second
Reader] all but four from Religious Studies Course.