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Title: Confucian meritocratic democracy : a comparative and philosophical study of Confucian meritocracy and democracy
Author: Hong, Cheng
ISNI:       0000 0004 7427 9753
Awarding Body: King's College London
Current Institution: King's College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2018
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Contemporary Confucian political theory is noticeable for two politically distinctive and epistemologically similar schools: Confucian democrats and Confucian meritocrats. They both attempt to revitalise Confucianism in modern political theory and practice by advocating various forms of Confucian democracy and Confucian meritocracy. However, there is little effort among the theorists of both schools to provide a comprehensive examination of how far Confucian meritocratic thought may be relevant concerns for modern democratic theorists. This thesis represents a comparative and philosophical study of classical Confucianism and academic democratic theories. It argues that it is possible to develop a political theory pertaining to a Confucian meritocratic form of democracy. Such theory, which stresses the importance of helping citizens to make reasonable political decisions, contributes to the justification of the superiority of democracy and assists addressing some challenges modern democracy are facing. The argument has three stages. The first is to explore the ideas of Confucian meritocracy by elucidating and reconstructing some early Confucian political discourses. Such exploration relies upon an analytical and critical reading of some texts in the Confucian classics, especially those concerning Ren 仁. The second is to investigate some theoretical and practical problems with the core normative democratic principles in the justification of the superiority of democracy. These normative principles are related to political authority, political rights and political equality and are often deployed to justify the intrinsic values of democracy. The third is to reconcile Confucian meritocracy and modern democracy by exploring the viability of Confucian Meritocratic Democracy or CMD. CMD, which is discussed as an ideal form of government, is founded upon Confucian conceptions of political authority, political rights and political equality. This thesis argues that while such conceptions preserves some political, meritocratic principles critically derived from classical Confucianism, they are compatible with the practical aims of democracy. This thesis also elaborates upon some hypothetical institutional arrangements in CMD.
Supervisor: Sangiovanni, Andrea ; Yao, Xinzhong Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available