Amid rapid economic and social changes, intellectual debates among scholars in China have become more visible, salient and divergent. From the “Old Left” to the “New Left” to the Liberals, a wide range of thoughts and arguments have emerged to create a strong current of discourse that has influenced government policy and public opinion. While perhaps a positive indicator of an increasingly open and pluralistic intellectual community, these debates have constituted a new challenge for consensus-building in China’s future development.
On September 14, the John L. Thornton China Center hosted a discussion on intellectual debates within China. Panelists included Jianying Zha, author of Tide Players: The Movers and Shakers of a Rising China (The New Press, 2011); Yawei Liu, director of the China Program at the Carter Center; and Brookings experts Cheng Li and Jeffrey Bader. Senior Fellow Kenneth Lieberthal, director of the John L. Thornton China Center, provided introductory remarks and moderated the discussion.
After the program, panelists took audience questions.