Bai On-Line Lecture on Confucian Meritocracy

Of the People, for the People, but not by the People ― Confucian Meritocracy as a Correction of Democracy (BAI Tongdong, Fudan University, China)
Thursday, October 08, 2020, 07:00pm – 08:30pm

This talk is co-sponsored by Rutgers Global-China Office. It is open to the public, but registration is required; please see below for information.




There are four problems with democracy, especially the institution of one person one vote. Many democratic and liberal thinkers understand them and try to correct them from within. In this talk, Professor BAI Tongdong will argue that these revisions are fundamentally inadequate to address these problems. A better political arrangement to deal with this fact than today’s democracies is a hybrid regime that contains both democratic and meritocratic elements, which is what a Confucian would propose.  He will illustrate the basic arrangements of this regime, and show why it can deal with the aforementioned fact and so why it is superior to today’s democratic regimes.


Dr. BAI Tongdong 白彤东 is the Dongfang Chair Professor of Philosophy at Fudan University in China, and a Global Professor of Law at NYU’s Law School. His research interests include Chinese philosophy and political philosophy. He has two books published in English: China: The Political Philosophy of the Middle Kingdom (Zed Books, 2012), and Against Political Equality: The Confucian Case (Princeton University Press, 2019). He is also the director of an English-based MA and visiting program in Chinese philosophy at Fudan University that is intended to promote the studies of Chinese philosophy in the world.


This talk is open to the public, but registration is required. Click here to register. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Location Zoom (registration required)
Contact Nancy Rosario ( with questions.

One reply

  1. We happen to be in the last month before one of the most important elections in American history (with mail-in voting, it has actually already begun), and, at least for that purpose, I hope the electorate will practice one-person-one-vote.

    We have had extensive and generally unpleasant experience with electoral systems other than one-person-one-vote in this country, it should be noted.

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