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POLI 422 - Goldman & MacFarquhar: The Emergence of Politially Independent Intellectuals

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McGill University
Political Science
POLI 422
Juan Wang

GoldmanMacFarquharThe Emergence of Politically Independent IntellectualsThree groups1Older intellectualsWere most persecuted under Mao but quickly responded to Deng Xiaopings call for help Resembled more their literati ancestors under Imperial China than modern day counterparts2Younger intellectualsToo young to have experienced the Cultural Revolution set out to absorb international intellectual and cultural trends studied abroad Also sought to offer advice to the government 3Middlegeneration intellectualsThis was the generation most active during the Cultural Revolution and whose members were in their thirties and forties in the postMao era resembled East European counterparts Have engaged in more independent political activity than either of the other two generationsAll three generations share the attitude that only intellectuals can bring about political changeSimilarities with the Confucian LiteratiIn the Dengist era similar to most of Chinese history a de facto intellectual autonomy has developed in academia arts and popular culture Individuals in these fields could be left alone as long as they remained within the limits of their fields and did not oppose the governments authority directlyLike Confucian literati postMao intellectuals regard themselves as responsible for defining and maintaining moral norms for the political leadership as well as for the population at large 284These intellectuals have been appointed to high positions in government academia media and the cultural sphere They have also assumed leadership of important policymaking institutes and heralded professional institutionsThe premodern style of cooperation between government and intellectuals which was severed in the Mao era was restored under Deng and Jiang Politicalintellectual alliances have been held together for the most part by shared political views and values that have woven a variety of informal intellectualpolitical networks rather than by purely organizational ties
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