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Summary  Chinese political philosophy section covers many themes and issues in major schools of thought in ancient China like Confucianism, Daoism, Legalism, Mohism and their later development, as well as modern encounter with the West Philosophy and debate. The major themes include but not limited, human-Heaven harmony,  human relationships, rule of virtue, the way of political, state and society, law and order, sagely politics, etc.
Key works political, Confucianism, Daoism, Legalism, Mohism, Buddhism, virtue, sage-hood, law.
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  1. State Perfectionism and the Importance of Confucianism for East Asia's Future Development.Franz Mang - 2021 - Philosophical Forum 52 (1):5-16.
    The Philosophical Forum, Volume 52, Issue 1, Page 5-16, Spring 2021.
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  2. China and England: On the Structural Convergence of Political Values. [REVIEW]Sandra Leonie Field - 2020 - Journal of World Philosophies 5 (1):188-195.
    At the centre of Powers' (2019) China and England is an extraordinary forgotten episode in the history of political ideas. There was a time when English radicals critiqued the corruption and injustice of the English political system by contrasting it with the superior example of China. There was a time when they advocated adopting a Chinese conceptual framework for thinking about politics. So dominant and prevalent was the English radicals' use of this framework, that their opponents took to dismissing their (...)
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  3. Huang Zongxi: Making It Safe Not to Be Servile.Sandra Leonie Field - 2020 - In Charlotte Alston, Amber Carpenter & Rachael Wiseman (eds.), Portraits of Integrity: 26 Case Studies from History, Literature and Philosophy. London: Bloomsbury. pp. 83-91.
    Integrity is often conceived as a heroic ideal: the person of integrity sticks to what they believe is right, regardless of the consequences. In this article, I defend a conception of ordinary integrity, for people who either do not desire or are unable to be moral martyrs. Drawing on the writings of seventeenth century thinker Huang Zongxi, I propose refocussing attention away from an abstract ideal of integrity, to instead consider the institutional conditions whereby it is made safe not to (...)
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  4. A Confucian Perspective on Tertiary Education for the Common Good.Edmond Eh - 2018 - Journal of the Macau Ricci Institute 3:26-34.
    Confucian education is best captured by the programme described in the Great Learning. Education is presented first as the process of self-cultivation for the sake of developing virtuous character. Self-cultivation then allows for virtue to be cultivated in the familial, social and international dimensions. My central thesis is that Confucianism can serve as a universal framework of educating people for the common good in its promotion of personal cultivation for the sake of human progress. On this account the common good (...)
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  5. Public Deliberation in a Globalized World? The Case of Confucian Customs and Traditions.Elena Ziliotti - 2018 - In Michael Reder, Alexander Filipovic, Dominik Finkelde & Johannes Wallacher (eds.), Yearbook Practical Philosophy in a Global Perspective. Freiburg, Germany: Verlad Karl Alber. pp. 339-361.
    The question of how democracy can deal with cultural diversity has become more central than ever. The increasing flow of people to many Western democratic countries indicates that our societies will become more and more multicultural. But what is the best way for democracy to deal with cultural diversity? It has been argued that, given its communicative core, the Habermasian model of deliberative democracy provides a platform where cultural groups can concur on peaceful agreements. In this paper, I show the (...)
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  6. On How to Construct a Confucian Democracy for Modern Times.Roger T. Ames - 2017 - Philosophy East and West 67 (1):61-81.
    In his new book, Confucian Perfectionism: A Political Philosophy for Modern Times, Joseph Chan observes that Confucianism from its inception has suffered from a gap between its lofty aspirations and its historical reality—that is, there has been a severe discrepancy between its strong and resilient regulative ideals and a persistent pattern of traditionally weak social and governmental institutions and their practices. To overcome this historical disparity, Chan argues that contemporary Confucians should draw upon Western liberal institutions to the extent that (...)
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  7. Neo-Confucianism: A Philosophical Introduction.Stephen C. Angle & Justin Tiwald - 2017 - Cambridge, UK: Polity.
    Neo-Confucianism is a philosophically sophisticated tradition weaving classical Confucianism together with themes from Buddhism and Daoism. It began in China around the eleventh century CE, played a leading role in East Asian cultures over the last millennium, and has had a profound influence on modern Chinese society. -/- Based on the latest scholarship but presented in accessible language, Neo-Confucianism: A Philosophical Introduction is organized around themes that are central in Neo-Confucian philosophy, including the structure of the cosmos, human nature, ways (...)
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  8. Introduction: Confucian Perfectionism's Wary Embrace of Democracy.Yvonne Chiu - 2017 - Philosophy East and West 67 (1):1-2.
    With the stunning spread of democracy over large swathes of the globe since 1975 seemingly coming to a halt and perhaps receding in recent years, we revisit the question of whether democracy is really compatible with all types of cultures and philosophies, particularly those from Asia, where nearly two-thirds of the world’s population lives. Joseph Chan’s *Confucian Perfectionism: A Political Philosophy for Modern Times* (Princeton University Press, 2014) reconstructs Confucianism in order to meld it with democracy in a mutually advantageous (...)
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  9. Moral Authority and Rulership in Ming Literati Thought.Peter Ditmanson - 2017 - European Journal of Political Theory 16 (4):430-449.
    This article explores the crises and debates surrounding the management of imperial family matters, especially succession, under the Ming Dynasty as an approach to understanding the limits of imperial power and the nature of literati discourse on the imperium. Ming officials and members of the literati community became passionately engaged in the debates on imperial family decisions, regarding the moral order of the imperial family as a key feature of their prerogatives over imperial power. This prerogative was based upon claims (...)
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  10. Confucian Authority, Political Right, and Democracy.Sungmoon Kim - 2017 - Philosophy East and West 67 (1):3-14.
    In the past two decades, normative Confucian political theory has emerged as one of the most vibrant subfields of political theory, spawning a variety of philosophical thoughts, normative ideas, and institutional suggestions that are relevant to the modern societal context of Confucian East Asia. Ideas such as “Confucian democracy” and “Confucian constitutionalism” are no longer considered oxymoronic or conceptually impossible, and scholars in this field continue to develop their theories from a wide range of philosophical perspectives. What is still missing, (...)
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  11. Zhuangzi: Closet Confucian?Michael Nylan - 2017 - European Journal of Political Theory 16 (4):411-429.
    Confucius and Zhuangzi are the two most famous thinkers in all of Chinese history, aside from Laozi, the Old Master. They occupy positions in the history of Chinese thinking roughly comparable to those held by Plato and Epicurus in the Western narrative of civilisation, in that they offer visions of the engaged political life and the engaged social self to which later political theorists and ethicists invariably return. For the last century or so, if not longer, Sinologists and comparative philosophers (...)
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  12. From Practice to Theory: Sungmoon Kim on Confucian Democracy.Jeffrey Flynn - 2016 - Philosophy East and West 66 (4):1340-1347.
    Sungmoon Kim’s Confucian Democracy in East Asia: Theory and Practice is a brilliant and engaging contribution to our understanding of democratic theory and practice.1 The title of my comment here emphasizes the innovative way in which Kim moves from practice to theory by relying on the vibrant Confucian civil society in South Korea as both the normative inspiration for and practical reflection of his model of Confucian democracy. In the first section below, I highlight three interrelated ways in which Kim’s (...)
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  13. The Shenzi Fragments: A Philosophical Analysis and Translation.Eirik Lang Harris - 2016 - New York: Columbia University Press.
    The Shenzi Fragments is the first complete translation in any Western language of the extant work of Shen Dao (350–275 B.C.E.). Though his writings have been recounted and interpreted in many texts, particularly in the work of Xunzi and Han Fei, very few Western scholars have encountered the political philosopher's original, influential formulations. This volume contains both a translation and an analysis of the Shenzi Fragments. It explains their distillation of the potent political theories circulating in China during the Warring (...)
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  14. What Kind of Democracy Is a Confucian Democracy?: A Response to Jeffrey Flynn.Sungmoon Kim - 2016 - Philosophy East and West 66 (4):1347-1352.
    Jeff Flynn’s comments on my methodological pluralism as well as the way I do political theory, namely explanatory evaluation, capture remarkably well what I struggled with most in writing Confucian Democracy in East Asia: Theory and Practice. As Flynn rightly notes, my research questions were inspired by actual problems with which contemporary East Asians commonly struggle, and my goal was to derive philosophical inspirations from the actual social, cultural, and political realities of East Asia for normative political theory of Confucian (...)
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  15. Improving Confucian Democracy: Replies to Elstein and Angle.Sungmoon Kim - 2016 - Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 15 (3):453-465.
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  16. Bell, Daniel A., The China Model: Political Meritocracy and the Limits of Democracy: Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2015, 318 Pages.Henrique Schneider - 2016 - Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 15 (4):639-642.
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  17. Why Equality and Which Inequalities?: A Modern Confucian Approach to Democracy.Sor-Hoon Tan - 2016 - Philosophy East and West 66 (2):488-514.
    Those who see Confucianism as a premodern imperial ideology or a traditional religion have no problem characterizing its social ideal as inherently hierarchical, as this is fairly typical of such systems of thought. From this perspective, rather than valuing equality Confucianism takes for granted inequalities among people, and justifies social hierarchies and unequal distribution of power, resources, prestige, and other goods as part of its ethics and its ideal of good government by sagely kings, the justification sometimes involving metaphysical claims (...)
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  18. Aspects of Shen Dao's Political Philosophy.Eirik Lang Harris - 2015 - History of Philosophy Quarterly 32 (2):217-234.
    Even among those who work in the field of early Chinese philosophy,the name Shen Dao (慎到, ca. 360–285 BCe) rarely calls to mind much of interest, and what it does call up are often simply depictions of him in several of the more famous texts of the time: in the Han Feizi as an advocate of positional power; in the Xunzi as being blinded by a focus on laws; or in the Zhuangzi as one who wished to discard knowledge. Few (...)
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  19. Confucianism, Law, and Democracy in Contemporary Korea.Sungmoon Kim (ed.) - 2015 - Rowman & Littlefield International.
    A collection of original essays developing a Confucian political and legal theory, focusing on South Korea, traditionally the most Confucian East Asian country in its legal, political, and cultural practices.
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  20. The East Asian Challenges for Democracy: Political Meritocracy in Comparative Perspective Ed. By Daniel A. Bell, Chenyang Li.Michael Masterson - 2015 - Philosophy East and West 65 (3):973-976.
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  21. Epistemic Elitism, Paternalism, and Confucian Democracy.Shaun O’Dwyer - 2015 - Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 14 (1):33-54.
    This paper brings a fresh, epistemic perspective to bear on prominent Confucian philosophers’ arguments for a hybrid Deweyan-Confucian democracy, or for an illiberal democracy with “Confucian characteristics.” Reconstructing principles for epistemic elitism and paternalism from the pre-Qin 秦 Confucian thought that inspires these advocates for Confucian democracy, it finds two major problems with their proposals. For those who abandon or modify this epistemic elitism and paternalism in accordance with , the result is a philosophical syncretism that is either unconvincingly Confucian (...)
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  22. A Confucian Constitutional Order: How China's Ancient Past Can Shape Its Political Future by Jiang Qing, Translated by Edmund Ryden, Edited by Daniel A. Bell and Ruiping Fan (Review).Stephen C. Angle - 2014 - Philosophy East and West 64 (2):502-506.
    How important is Jiang Qing, whose extraordinary proposals for political change make up the core of the new book A Confucian Constitutional Order: How China’s Ancient Past Can Shape Its Political Future? In his Introduction to the volume, co-editor Daniel Bell maintains that Jiang’s views are “intensely controversial” and that conversations about political reform in China rarely fail to turn to Jiang’s proposals. At least in my experience, this is something of an exaggeration. Chinese political thinking today is highly pluralistic, (...)
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  23. Reviving the Past for the Future?: The (In)Compatibility Between Confucianism and Democracy in Contemporary China.Demin Duan - 2014 - Asian Philosophy 24 (2):147-157.
    The issue of (in)compatibility between Confucianism and modern democracy, particularly in China, has attracted much debate over the decade. This article singles out the particular notion of Minben ??, which is at the center of the argument for a ?Confucian democracy?, and argues that it is fundamentally different from modern democracy. However, this does not mean that Confucianism could not be connected with modern democracy. The important question is: what exactly does it mean to ?connect? Confucianism to the modern society? (...)
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  24. Democracy in Contemporary Confucian Philosophy.David Elstein - 2014 - Routledge.
    This book examines democracy in recent Chinese-language philosophical work. It focuses on Confucian-inspired political thought in the Chinese intellectual world from after the communist revolution in China until today. The volume analyzes six significant contemporary Confucian philosophers in China and Taiwan, describing their political thought and how they connect their thought to Confucian tradition, and critiques their political proposals and views. It illustrates how Confucianism has transformed in modern times, the divergent understandings of Confucianism today, and how contemporary Chinese philosophers (...)
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  25. Harmonizing Global Ethics in the Future: A Proposal to Add South and East to West.Thaddeus Metz - 2014 - Journal of Global Ethics 10 (2):146-155.
    This article considers how global ethical matters might be approached differently in the English-speaking literature if values salient in sub-Saharan Africa and East Asia were taken seriously. Specifically, after pointing out how indigenous values in both of these major parts of the world tend to prescribe honouring harmonious relationships, the article brings out what such an approach to morality entails for political power, foreign relations and criminal justice. For each major issue, it suggests that harmony likely has implications that differ (...)
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  26. Jiang, Qing, A Confucian Constitutional Order: How China’s Ancient Past Can Shape Its Political Future. Tran. By Edmund Ryden, Edited by Daniel A. Bell and Ruiping Fan: Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press, 2013, X + 256 Pages. [REVIEW]Ellen Y. Zhang - 2014 - Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 13 (2):277-281.
  27. Contemporary Confucian and Islamic Approaches to Democracy and Human Rights.Stephen Angle - 2013 - Comparative Philosophy 4 (1):7-41.
    Both Confucian and Islamic traditions stand in fraught and internally contested relationships with democracy and human rights. It can easily appear that the two traditions are in analogous positions with respect to the values associated with modernity, but a central contention of this essay is that Islam and Confucianism are not analogous in this way. Positions taken by advocates of the traditions are often similar, but the reasoning used to justify these positions differs in crucial ways. Whether one approaches these (...)
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  28. Fred Dallmayr and Zhao Tingyang, Eds. Contemporary Chinese Political Thought: Debates and Perspectives: Lexington, KY: University Press of Kentucky, 2012. Viii + 295. [REVIEW]Stephen C. Angle - 2013 - Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 12 (1):111-115.
  29. Law, Humanity, and Reason: The Chinese Debate, the Habermasian Approach, and a Kantian Outcome.Xunwu Chen - 2013 - Asian Philosophy 23 (1):100-114.
    This paper explores the subject-matter of the relationship between law and humanity, filling a significant lacuna in philosophy of law in the West today. Doing so, the paper starts with recasting the traditional Chinese conflict—in particular, the conflict between legalism and Confucianism—over law in a new light of the contemporary call for stopping crimes against humanity. It then explores Habermas’ insight into and illusion of law. Finally, it examines the internal relationship between law and humanity, contending that law must always (...)
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  30. Bai, Tongdong, China: The Political Philosophy of the Middle Kingdom: New York: Zed Books, 2012, Viii+206 Pages. [REVIEW]Kurtis G. Hagen - 2013 - Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 12 (4):545-549.
  31. Han Fei on the Problem of Morality.Eirik Lang Harris - 2013 - In Paul R. Goldin (ed.), Dao Companion to the Philosophy of Han Fei. Springer.
    In much of pre-Qin political philosophy, including those thinkers usually labeled Confucian, Daoist, or Mohist, at least part of the justification of the political state comes from their views on morality, and the vision of the good ruler was quite closely tied to the vision of the good person. In an important sense, for these thinkers, political philosophy is an exercise in applied ethics. Han Fei, however, offers an interesting break from this tradition, arguing that, given the vastly different goals (...)
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  32. Confucian and Taoist Work Values: An Exploratory Study of the Chinese Transformational Leadership Behavior. [REVIEW]Liang-Hung Lin, Yu-Ling Ho & Wei-Hsin Eugenia Lin - 2013 - Journal of Business Ethics 113 (1):91-103.
    When it comes to Chinese transformational leadership behavior, the focus seems to be Confucian work value; nonetheless, it represents only one of the Chinese traditions. In order to have a better understanding the relationship between Chinese traditional values and transformational leadership behavior, Taoist work value should also be taken into consideration. Thus, this study firstly develops Confucian and Taoist work value scale (study 1) and then applies this scale to examine its relationship with transformational leadership (study 2). The results show (...)
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  33. Strong Soldiers, Failed Revolution: The State and Military in Burma, 1962-88.Yoshihiro Nakanishi - 2013 - Philosophy East and West 63 (2).
  34. On Confucian Political Philosophy and Its Theory of Justice.Guo Qiyong - 2013 - Frontiers of Philosophy in China 8 (1):53-75.
  35. Three Ideas of Democracy and the Resources of Ru Thought.Fan Ruiping - 2013 - Contemporary Chinese Thought 45 (1):80-95.
  36. Confucian Rights as a "Fallback Apparatus” 作为“备用机制”的儒家权利.Justin Tiwald - 2013 - Academic Monthly 学术月刊 45 (11):41-49.
    Liang Tao and Kuang Zhao, trans. Confucian rights can be characterized as a kind of “fallback apparatus,” necessary only when preferred mechanisms—for example, familial and neighborly care or traditional courtesies—would otherwise fail to protect basic human interests. In this paper, I argue that the very existence of such rights is contingent on their ability to function as remedies for dysfunctional social relationships or failures to develop the virtues that sustain harmonious Confucian relationships. Moreover, these remedies are not, strictly speaking, rights-based, (...)
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  37. China: The Political Philosophy of the Middle Kingdom.Tongdong Bai - 2012 - Zed Books.
    But what is the message of China's rise as an economic and political power? Tongdong Bai addresses this pressing question by examining the history of political theories and practices from China's past, and showing how it impacts upon the present. Chinese political traditions are often viewed as "authoritarian" (in contrast with "Western" democratic traditions), but the historical reality is much more complex and there is a need to understand the political values shaping China. Bai argues that the debates between China's (...)
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  38. He, Huaihong 何懷宏, Hereditary Society 世襲社會. Beijing 北京: Peking University Press, 北京大學出版社, 2011, 246 Pages; and Selection Society 選舉社會. Beijing 北京: Peking University Press, 北京大學出版社, 2011, 372 Pages. [REVIEW]Zhen Cai - 2012 - Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 11 (2):247-252.
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  39. Preface: World-Humanity and Chinese Philosophy.Chung-Ying Cheng - 2012 - Journal of Chinese Philosophy 39 (4):469-471.
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  40. Replying to Armour: Certainty and Exceptionalism: Threats to a World-Humanities?Gordon Christie - 2012 - Journal of Chinese Philosophy 39 (4):580-593.
    This article explores attitudes underscoring arguments I believe are located in Professor Armour's address in the present special issue. I first show how Armour's arguments are intertwined with a resolute belief in the existence of a unique form of knowledge, one particularly attuned to the work of humanities scholars, and then go on to argue this certainty is linked to an antecedent attitude, one of exceptionalism. Spelling out what I find to be troubling about this species of argument leads into (...)
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  41. Confucianism and Liberal Democracy: Some Comments.Fred R. Dallmayr - 2012 - Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 11 (3):357-368.
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  42. Jenco, Leigh K., Making the Political: Founding and Action in the Political Theory ofZhang Shizhao: New York: Cambridge University Press, 2010, 282 Pages.Loubna El Amine - 2012 - Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 11 (3):399-403.
  43. A Naturalist Version of Confucian Morality for Human Rights.Wen Haiming & William Keli’I. Akina - 2012 - Asian Philosophy 22 (1):1-14.
    This article analyzes the source of Confucian universal morality and human dignity from the perspective of the classic saying, ?what follows the dao is good, and what dao forms is nature? (jishan chengxing) found in the Great Commentaries of the Book of Changes. From a Classical Confucian perspective, human nature is generated by the natural dao of tian, so human dignity and morality also emerge from the natural dao of tian. This article discusses the relationship between the Confucian dao of (...)
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  44. Virtue Politics and Political Leadership: A Confucian Rejoinder to Hanfeizi.Sungmoon Kim - 2012 - Asian Philosophy 22 (2):177-197.
    In the Confucian tradition, the ideal government is called "benevolent government" (ren zheng), central to which is the ruler's parental love toward his people who he deems as his children. Hanfeizi criticized this seemingly innocent political idea by pointing out that (1) not only is the state not a family but even within the family parental love is short of making the children orderly and (2) ren as love inevitably results in the ruin of the state because it confuses what (...)
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  45. A Pluralist Reconstruction of Confucian Democracy.Sungmoon Kim - 2012 - Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 11 (3):315-336.
    In this paper, I attempt to revamp Confucian democracy, which is originally presented as the communitarian corrective and cultural alternative to Western liberal democracy, into a robust democratic political theory and practice that is plausible in the societal context of pluralism. In order to do so, I first investigate the core tenets of value pluralism with reference to William Galston’s political theory, which gives full attention to the intrinsic value of diversity and human plurality particularly in the modern democratic context. (...)
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  46. Overcoming Modernity: Synchronicity and Image-Thinking (Review).Gereon Kopf - 2012 - Philosophy East and West 62 (2):300-305.
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  47. The Art of War Corpus and Chinese Just War Ethics Past and Present.Ping-Cheung Lo - 2012 - Journal of Religious Ethics 40 (3):404-446.
    The idea of “just war” is not alien to Chinese thought. The term “yi zhan” (usually translated as “just war” or “righteous war” in English) is used in Mencius, was renewed by Mao Zedong, and is still being used in China today (zhengyi zhanzheng). The best place to start exploring this Chinese idea is in the enormous Art of War corpus in premodern China, of which the Seven Military Classics is the best representative. This set of treatises served as the (...)
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  48. Individualism in Early China: Human Agency and the Self in Thought and Politics by Erica Fox Brindley. [REVIEW]Hagop Sarkissian - 2012 - Philosophy East and West 62 (3):408-410.
    Review of Individualism in Early China: Human Agency and the Self in Thought and Politics by Erica Fox Brindley.
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  49. Democracy in Confucianism.Sor-Hoon Tan - 2012 - Philosophy Compass 7 (5):293-303.
    Confucianism’s long historical association with despotism has cast doubts on its compatibility with democracy, and raise questions about its relevance in contemporary societies increasingly dominated by democratic aspirations. “Confucian democracy” has been described as a “contradiction in terms” and Asian politicians have appropriated Confucianism to justify resistance to liberalization and democratization. There has been a lively debate over the question of whether democracy can be found in Confucianism, from ancient texts such as the Analects and Mencius, to Confucian institutions such (...)
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  50. Guodian: The Newly Discovered Seeds of Chinese Religious and Political Philosophy (Review).Kirill O. Thompson - 2012 - Philosophy East and West 62 (2):311-316.
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