New on the site, well-known legal scholar Liang Zhiping on “Imagining ‘Tianxia’: Building Ideology in Contemporary China.” Like the Qin Hui piece on China and South Africa, Liang's text is very long, and I will publish it in installments over the next few months. When finished, we will have a comprehensive overview of the use and abuse of the tianxia concept by contemporary Chinese intellectuals.
New this month on the site, Jiang Shigong’s “The Internal Logic of Super-Sized Political Entities: ‘Empire’ and World Order.” Jiang is Professor of Law at Beijing University and a prominent member of the New Left and proponent of state power. His defense of Xi Jinping Thought, “Philosophy and History: Interpreting the ‘Xi Jinping Era’ through Xi’s Report to the Nineteenth National Congress of the CCP,” was arguably one of the most important political essays published in China in 2018. Jiang’s essay on empire is of a piece with “Philosophy and History,” in that he suggests that China will fill the vacuum created by the failure of the American and Soviet empires. The argument is audacious in its Schmittian embrace of power politics (“empire is forever; get over it”) and for its casting of “the ideology of the sovereign nation-state” as something that must be “transcended.”
A housekeeping issue. We are proud to note that Columbia University Press will shortly publish our edited volume, Voices from the Chinese Century, which includes several translations currently available on our site. You can purchase the volume here (paperback edition only 30$ US, an inexpensive Christmas stocking stuffer for those hard-to-buy-for relatives).
Consequently, in the next few days most of the essays published in the volume will be reduced to teasers on the website to help the press achieve its sales objectives. We will make the full texts available again on the site in 12-18 months. If you need any of these texts for research purposes during the interim, send me a message and I will accommodate.
About this site
This web site is devoted to the subject of intellectual life in contemporary China, and more particularly to the writings of establishment intellectuals. What you will find here are essentially translations of Chinese texts that we consider important, together with discussions of related issues and a number of reference tools that can help those interested to navigate the project.
This materials on this website are open-access and are published under a Creative Commons 3.0 Unported licence. We encourage the widespread circulation of these materials. All content may be used and copied, provided that you credit the Reading and Writing the China Dream Project and provide a link to readingthechinadream.com.