Frontiers of Philosophy in China

, Volume 2, Issue 4, pp 475–487 | Cite as

On Confucian communitarianism

  • Hu Weixi Email author
Research Article


As a social and political thought, communitarian ideas appeared in the Pre-Qin Confucianism. By the Song Dynasty, it had become a systematic theory, namely, the learning of the “four books.” As a social and political theory, not only can Confucian communitarianism contribute to Western liberalism, but it can also be an intellectual resource for the development of democracy in East Asian countries and regions. The future of the Confucian communitarianism lies in its critique of itself and its discourse with Western liberalism, by which Confucianism evolves from communitarianism into liberalism.


Chinese philosophy Confucian communitarianism learning of the “four books” Western liberalism 


儒家社群主义作为一种社会与政治思想, 其基本观念在先秦儒家那里就已具备, 但它作为一种完备的思想理论体系, 却完成于宋代, 这就是“四书学”理论系统的提出。 作为一种社会与政治理论, 儒家社群主义除了可以为西方自由主义做补充之外, 其更重要的思想史意义在于: 可以为东亚, 主要是儒家传统文化圈的国家与地区的政治民主提供思想资源。 其新一轮的发展前景在于: 经过自我批判以及与西方自由主义的对话, 实现儒家思想由社群主义向自由主义的转化。


中国哲学 儒家社群主义 “四书”学 西方自由主义 


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  1. Hu Weixi (2006). Analysis of community. Expanding Horizons, No. 1Google Scholar
  2. Liu Zhongde, Luo Zhiye, ed (1992). The Chinese / English Four Books (trans. Legge J). Changsha: Hunan ChubansheGoogle Scholar
  3. Zhu Xi (1983). Sishu zhangju jizhu 四书章句集注 (Collected Commentaries on the “Four Books”), Beijing: Zhonghua ShujuGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Higher Education Press and Springer-Verlag 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PhilosophyTsinghua UniversityBeijingChina

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