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J. C. Cooper (1905–1999)

Author of An Illustrated Encyclopaedia of Traditional Symbols

Includes the names: Jean C. Cooper, Jean Campbell Cooper
Also includes: JJ Cooper (2)

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Jean C. Cooper was born at Chefoo in North China. Descended from a branch of the English nobility, she was brought up by Chinese amahs to understand Taoism, Confucianism, and Buddhism, the three religions of China. She went to a British school at Kuling in the mountains of Lushan, traveled the world with her parents, and finished her education at boarding school in England. Cooper read Philosophy at St. Andrew’s University and lectured on Comparative Religion, Philosophy, and Symbolism, chiefly in adult education. She lived with her husband in an isolated village in the county of Cumberland in the North-West of England (the Wordsworth country). Amongst other necessities of living in such isolation, she generated her own electricity from a nearby stream.
Cooper is the author of Taoism: The Way of the Mystic, Yin & Yang: The Taoist Harmony of Opposites, Chinese Alchemy: The Taoist Quest for Immortality, Fairy Tales: Allegories of the Inner Life, and An Illustrated Encyclopedia of Traditional Symbols, which was widely acclaimed for the profundity of its insights and as a permanent and reliable source of information. She was a friend of F. Clive-Ross, who, from 1963 until his death in 1981, edited the British journal Studies in Comparative Religion. Cooper was an untiring reader of books on spirituality and comparative religion, and contributed many book reviews to that journal.
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