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Universal Values and Chinese Characteristics: The Case of the Revival of Co...

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20.02, Level 20

360 Collins Street

Melbourne, VIC 3000

Australia

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he interactions and tensions between Western and Chinese ideas and values have a long and complex history; however, in recent years hostility in China to Western claims about “universal values” has become so intense that universal values now leads the list of seven topics that should not be discussed in China. I am exploring this issue through the lens of the contemporary revival of Confucianism in China – especially focusing on the World Zhu Family Association’s promotion, since 1993, of the universal significance of Zhu Xi’s Family Instructions. I will also discuss Chen Lai’s recent books on Chinese values as well as an edited volume by younger scholars, What’s Called Universal? Who’s Values? In addressing how these groups and individuals explore these questions, I ask—what might we learn about the struggle over universal values by surveying the claims of this sector of Contemporary Confucians in China?

About the Speaker

Hoyt Cleveland Tillman 田浩 is Professor of Chinese History in the School of International Letters and Cultures at Arizona State University. He is a leading international authority on the history of Confucianism in the Song, Jin and Yuan periods. At Harvard University, he earned a Ph.D. in History and East Asian Languages under the direction of Benjamin Schwartz and Ying-shih Yü. In 2000, he became the first Sinologist to be awarded the Alexander von Humboldt Prize (Humboldt-Forschungspreis) for his research contributions. He is an affiliated researcher at Peking University’s Center for Research on Ancient Chinese History. He has taught college and/or graduate courses at Peking University, Renmin University of China, National Taiwan University, Ludwig-Maxillian-Universitaet in Munich, and the University of Washington. He is currently a visiting scholar in the China Studies Research Centre.

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Boardroom

20.02, Level 20

360 Collins Street

Melbourne, VIC 3000

Australia

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