Reviews for Complete Tao Te Ching with the Four Canons of the Yellow Emperor

Book News Reviews
Originally published in French under the title Le Lau-tseu suivi des Quatre Canons de l'empereur Jaune (2009, Éditions Albin Mitchel), this translation by Levi (director of scientific research, National Center of Scientific Research in France, and the author of several books on Eastern philosophy) offers a complete version of the classic Chinese text paired for the first time, with the Four Canons of the Yellow Emperor along with commentary. Based on the Mawangdui and Guodian versions of the Tao Te Ching, the volume includes a lengthy introduction detailing the history of the 1973 discovery of the Mawangdui silk texts along with discussion of the methodology used in their translation. Jody Gladding provides the English translation. Annotation ©2011 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (

Library Journal Reviews 2011 March #1

Lvi (The Chinese Emperor) here unites the famous and famously elusive Tao Te Ching with another text that, early in the Han Dynasty, always accompanied it. While Lvi's project is designed to gladden the heart of the academic or scholarly inquirer, he usefully shows us that it has always been dangerous to abstract the Tao Te Ching from the historical and cultural contexts in which it originally flourished. His translation (from Chinese to French) presents one of the earliest known texts of the Tao Te Ching and the four canons that accompany it, attributed to the semilegendary "Yellow Emperor," and emphasizes the role of the Tao as a prescription for good and shrewd governance. VERDICT This edition, offering both a familiar and an unfamiliar text, should be of immense interest to scholars as well as devotees of the Way; essential for any scholarly collection on Asian religions.

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