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POLI 422 (21)
Juan Wang (19)
Chapter 1

POLI 422 - Lieberthal, Ch. 1: Legacies of Imperial China

5 Pages

Political Science
Course Code
POLI 422
Juan Wang

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Legacies of Imperial ChinaThe imperial tradition gave rise to the idea of a state built on an ideological commitment strong personal leadership at the Executive impressive nationwide governing bureaucracies and pervasive government influence in economic social and political life Some modern critics believe China must reject traditional culture to become a wealthy strong nation arguing that tradition discourages capitalist entrepreneurialism and capitalist success Chinese intellectuals have been wrestling with Chinas past since the end of the nineteenth century and many have tried to forge a sense of patriotism by paradoxically rejecting that past Confucianism as IdeologyThree core features1Conservatism Sought to preserve order looked not to the future but to a mythical state in the past 2HierarchicalBoth in political and social spheres Assumed that citizens were not and should not be equal Thus ruling group remained small and admission to it required learning a doctrine that justified the right of the few to rule the many 3Correctness in ConductEach type of relationship had a corresponding proper mode of behaviour always acting in conformity with this propriety maintained a harmonious society These three elements together led to an emphasis on ritual and on orthopraxy engaging in prescribed practice over orthodoxy conforming ones thinking to prescribed ideasIt also had the effect of stripping youths of initiative by placing greater social power in the hands ofo the older Legalismadvocated extensive use of material rewards and physical punishments to obtain desired behaviour premised on the assumption that people are inherently selfish
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