‘Harmonious Society’ and ‘Harmonious World’: China’s Policy Discourse under Hu Jintao – Zheng Yongnian (ÈÉëÊ∞∏Âπ¥) and Sow Keat Tok

From China Policy Institute website:

The present policy discourse ‘harmonious society‘ (hexie shehui), and its foreign policy alter ego ‘harmonious world‘ (hexie shijie) has become the defining discourse of Hu Jintao’s reign as Party Secretary of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and State President of China. Following the reading of ‘Decisions by the CCP Central Committee on Building Socialism and Harmonious Society, and Other Important Issues’ by the Central Committee during the 6th plenum (Oct 2006), ‘harmonious society’ is now just short of being institutionalized in the CCP’s charter (like Jiang’s ‘Three Represents’). ‘Harmonious society’ is widely anticipated to be the central theme of the 17th Party Congress scheduled for October 2007.

‘Harmonious society/world’ thus follows in the footsteps of previous policy discourses to map out the direction of China’s socioeconomic development as well setting the tone for national policies. In the realm of foreign policy, ‘harmonious world’ marks a shift in the leadership’s understanding of China’s position in the world, and correspondingly, its overall international strategy. [Full Text]

Zheng Yongnian (郑永年) is Professor and Head of Research at China Policy Institute. Sow Keat Tok is a research associate in the China Policy Institute.


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