From Marx to Confucius: Changing Discourses on China’s Political Future – Daniel A. Bell

Dissent Magazine is featuring several articles about China, including one by Daniel Bell in which he says a likely scenario for the future of China’s political system involves, “a strong, meritocratically chosen legislature that has constitutional priority over the democratically elected house.”:

Nobody argues that the current political system should remain in place once the economy is developed.

The question is, what comes after economic development? In China, the debates on this question are somewhat constrained due to political controls as well as the widely felt need to deal with China’s more immediate economic and social problems. There also seems to be an aversion to “utopian thinking,” which is an understandable reaction to Mao’s disastrous attempts to sweep away the past during the Great Leap Forward and the Cultural Revolution. Still, few doubt that there’s a need for a different”and more inspiring”political model in the future. In private discussions, there is room for speculation, and I will report on some possibilities. [Full text]


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