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Pengchun Chang’s Contributions to the Drafting of the UDHR

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Abstract

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) has proved to be a truly monumental instrument in the history of mankind. Pengchun Chang (P. C. Chang), a Chinese diplomat to the United Nations (UN), participated in the drafting work of the UDHR and played a leading role as Vice-Chairman of the Drafting Committee. His outstanding contributions to the UDHR should not be overlooked. He provided an accurate definition of the legal status of the UDHR, successfully integrated Confucianism into the UDHR, solved many disputes relevant to human rights origins, made the UDHR rigorously structured, creatively broke the deadlocks and resolved conflicts, dominated the drafting process of the right to speak in the proposed concepts of mutual tolerance and harmonious society, and expounded China’s views on human rights to the world. These contributions were marked down in history, and his contributions were also the contributions of Chinese civilization, national intelligence, and traditional culture.

The earlier English version was published with a title of “The contribution of P. C. Chang as typical Chinese wisdom to the Declaration” by Human Rights 2013, 12(5), 28. The earlier expanded version was published by China Legal Science (CSSCI) 2016, 4(5), 114–132. The earlier version of this chapter was included as Chap. 7 with a title of “P. C. Chang’s outstanding contributions to the UDHR” in the author’s book Historic achievement of a common standard: Pengchun Chang and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (Springer 2018, pp. 265–290) (See Picture 4.1).

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Notes

  1. 1.

    Human Rights Commission of the United Nations was initially established in February 1946, when there were 18 member states. In 1979, the number of member states increased to 43. From the 42nd session of the Commission in 1992, its number of member states increased to 53. The Commission is one of the major bodies to examine human rights issues within the system of the United Nations. This Commission played an important part in the drafting process of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. This Commission was dismissed on June 6, 2006, when Human Rights Council was established within the framework of the United Nations.

  2. 2.

    Afredsson and Eide (Eds.) (1999, p. 10).

  3. 3.

    Afredsson and Eide (Eds.) (1999, p. 10).

  4. 4.

    Afredsson and Eide (Eds.) (1999, p. 10).

  5. 5.

    Humphrey (1983, p. 400).

  6. 6.

    Humphrey (1983, p. 416).

  7. 7.

    Humphrey (1983, p. 403).

  8. 8.

    Humphrey (1983, p. 403).

  9. 9.

    Roosevelt (1958a, p. 77).

  10. 10.

    Roosevelt, E. (1958b, p. 95). (The following passages are cited from Eleanor Roosevelt’s memoirs: “Dr. P. C. Chang, who was a great joy to all of us because of his sense of humour, his philosophical observations and his ability to quote some apt Chinese proverb to fit almost any occasion.” (p. 95) “Dr. Chang was a pluralist and held forth in charming fashion on the proposition that there is more than one kind of ultimate reality. The Declaration, he said, should reflect more than simply Western ideas and Dr. Humphrey would have to be eclectic in his approach. His remark, though addressed to Dr. Humphrey, was really directed at Dr. Malik, from whom it drew a prompt retort as he expounded at some length the philosophy of Thomas Aquinas.” (p. 95) “I remember that at one point Dr. Chang suggested that the Secretariat might well spend a few months studying the fundamentals of Confucianism!” (p. 95).

  11. 11.

    Tian (1989).

  12. 12.

    Tian (1989).

  13. 13.

    Lu et al. (2003).

  14. 14.

    Humphrey (1983).

  15. 15.

    Eide A et al. (Eds.). (1992).

  16. 16.

    Glendon (2001).

  17. 17.

    Twiss (2007, 2009).

  18. 18.

    Chang (1936, p. 46).

  19. 19.

    Chang (1946a, p. 150).

  20. 20.

    Humphrey (1983, pp. 427–428).

  21. 21.

    Lindholm (1999, p. 56).

  22. 22.

    UN Document: GAOR C.3, p. 98.

  23. 23.

    UN Document: GAOR C.3, p. 98.

  24. 24.

    UN Document: GAOR C.3, p. 98.

  25. 25.

    UN Document: GAOR C.3, p. 173.

  26. 26.

    Lu et al. (2003).

  27. 27.

    Skogly (1999, p. 75).

  28. 28.

    Skogly (1999, p. 79).

  29. 29.

    UN Document: E/CN.4/52.

  30. 30.

    Humphrey (1983, pp. 396–397).

  31. 31.

    Hobbins (Ed.). (1994, p. 88). (According to Humphrey, the committee refers to the Third Committee of the General Assembly, including representatives of 58 states. In another words, P. C. Chang was a non-comparative figure in intellectual stature among all the representatives.).

  32. 32.

    UN Document: E/CN.4/AC.1/SR.2, p. 4.

  33. 33.

    UN Document: E/CN.4/AC.1/SR.2, p. 4.

  34. 34.

    Eide and Alfredsson (1992, pp. xxv–xxxv).

  35. 35.

    UN Document: GAOR C.3, p. 163.

  36. 36.

    Glendon (2001, p. 145).

  37. 37.

    UN Document: GAOR C.3, p. 128.

  38. 38.

    UN Document: GAOR C.3, p. 128.

  39. 39.

    UN Document: GAOR C.3, p. 130.

  40. 40.

    U. S. Department of State. (2008, p. 31).

  41. 41.

    UN Document: GAOR C.3, p. 48.

  42. 42.

    UN Document: GAOR C.3, p. 87.

  43. 43.

    UN Document: GAOR C.3, p. 48.

  44. 44.

    UN Document: E/CN.4/AC.1/SR.5, p. 4.

  45. 45.

    UN Document: E/CN.4/AC.1/SR.8, p. 6.

  46. 46.

    UN Document: E/CN.4/AC.1/SR.8, p. 7.

  47. 47.

    UN Document: E/CN.4/AC.1/18; also refer to UN Document: E/CN.4/95 Annex A, pp. 14–15.

  48. 48.

    UN Document: GAOR C.3, pp. 153–154.

  49. 49.

    UN Document: GAOR C.3, p. 154.

  50. 50.

    UN Document: GAOR C.3, p. 154.

  51. 51.

    UN Document: GAOR C.3, p. 98.

  52. 52.

    UN Document: GAOR C.3, p. 107.

  53. 53.

    UN Document: GAOR C.3, p.128.

  54. 54.

    UN Document: GAOR C.3, p.128.

  55. 55.

    According to Xingshen Chen’s Preface to On education and dramatic arts by Pengchun Chang, “He (P. C. Chang) had profound knowledge, running many different courses. One year, he ran a course of logic, I was eager to select the course, but no one knows why it didn’t come true, I still feel regretful now.” (Xingshen Chen was studying at Nankai University then.).

  56. 56.

    Ruth and Cheng (Eds.), (1995, p. 23).

  57. 57.

    Opsah and Dimitrijevic (1999, p. 635).

  58. 58.

    Chang (1946b), reprinted in Ruth and Cheng (1995, p. 153).

  59. 59.

    Chang (1946b), reprinted in Ruth and Cheng (1995, p. 153); Glendon (2001, p. 185).

  60. 60.

    UN Document: E/CN.4/AC.1/SR.15, p. 4. (P. C. Chang’s proposal: “Every one has the right to education. Primary education shall be obligatory and shall be provided by the State or community in which he lives. There shall be equal access to technical, culture and higher education as can be provided by the State or community on the basis of merit and without distinction as to race, sex, language or religion.”).

  61. 61.

    UN Document: E/CN.4/SR.67, p. 16. (P. C. Chang’s proposal: 1. Everyone has the right to education, including free fundamental education and equal access on the basis of merit to higher education. 2. Education shall be directed to the full development of the human personality and to the strengthening of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms.).

  62. 62.

    UN Document: E/CN.4/SR.69, p. 9. (P. C. Chang’s proposal: Education shall be directed to the full development of the human personality, to the strengthening of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms and to the promotion of international goodwill.

  63. 63.

    UN Document: GAOR C.3, p. 462. (2. Everyone has the right of free and equal access to public service of their country.).

  64. 64.

    UN Document: GAOR C.3, p. 868. (P. C. Chang’s proposal: Elementary education shall be compulsory; technical and professional education shall be made generally available; and higher education shall be equally accessible to all on the basis of merit.

  65. 65.

    UN Document: E/CN.4/AC.1/SR.11, pp. 10–11.

  66. 66.

    UN Document: E/CN.4/AC.1/SR.11, pp. 10–11.

  67. 67.

    Chang (2004, p. 204). Tianjian: Nankai University. (At that time—on November 15, 1923, P. C. Chang acted as the first director of teaching affairs of Tsinghua School.

  68. 68.

    Woo (1980). (Another version of Mencius’ words translated: “As for a country, people are the most important. The god of the land and the god of grain come second. The ruler is the least important.”).

  69. 69.

    Mencius (1892, p. 483).

  70. 70.

    UN Document: GAOR C.3, p. 48.

  71. 71.

    UN Document: GAOR C.3, p. 895.

  72. 72.

    UN Document: GAOR C.3, p. 895.

  73. 73.

    Confucius (1991, p. 7).

  74. 74.

    Humphrey, J. P. On the edge of greatness (pp. 232–233). Cited in Glendon, M. A. (2001). A world made new: Eleanor Roosevelt and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (p. 22). New York: Random House.

  75. 75.

    Malik (Ed.), (2000, p. 121).

  76. 76.

    U. S. Department of State (2008, p. 32).

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Sun, P. (2022). Pengchun Chang’s Contributions to the Drafting of the UDHR. In: Chinese Contributions to International Discourse of Human Rights. Springer, Singapore. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-19-0580-3_4

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