By Florence C. Hsia
Though Jesuits assumed numerous roles as missionaries in past due imperial China, their such a lot memorable guise used to be that of medical professional, whose maps, clocks, astrolabes, and armillaries reportedly astonished the chinese language. however the icon of the missionary-scientist is itself a posh fable. Masterfully correcting the traditional tale of China Jesuits as uncomplicated conduits for Western technological know-how, Florence C. Hsia exhibits how those missionary-scientists remade themselves as they negotiated where of the profane sciences in a spiritual enterprise.
Sojourners in a wierd Land develops a family tree of Jesuit conceptions of clinical existence in the chinese language undertaking box from the 16th via eighteenth centuries. reading the broadcast list in their endeavors in average philosophy and arithmetic, Hsia identifies 3 versions of the missionary guy of technological know-how through their genres of writing: challenge heritage, travelogue, and educational assortment. Drawing at the heritage of early glossy Europe’s clinical, spiritual, and print tradition, she makes use of the elaboration and reception of those clinical personae to build the 1st collective biography of the Jesuit missionary-scientist’s many incarnations in past due imperial China.
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