New Conservatism (China)

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In China, New Conservatism (Chinese: 新保守主义), sometimes translated as "Neoconservatism", was a movement which first arose in the early 1990s and argued that progress was best accomplished through gradual reform of society, eschewing revolution and sudden overthrow of the governmental system. This movement was based heavily on the ideas of Edmund Burke and was described in the West by the scholar Joseph Fewsmith.[1] Other than the name, the movement had no connection with neoconservatism in the United States (the US movement is instead referred to as Niukang in Chinese), though, from the standpoint of philosophy, it can be identified as a form of conservative thought, albeit ideologically different from "old conservatism" (旧保守主义).

The new conservatism movement in China was in general supportive of the current government, while at the same time being opposed to aspects of the government which advocated the notion of revolution. However, unlike the official ideology, Chinese new conservatism was neutral on the validity of Marxism and skeptical toward Mao Zedong, founder and long-time leader of the People's Republic of China.

Seen from a Chinese new conservative perspective, the Great Leap Forward, the Cultural Revolution, and the Tiananmen Protests of 1989 were all in error in that they attempted to change society through revolutionary means.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Fewsmith, Joseph: Neoconservatism and the End of the Dengist Era. Asian Survey, Vol. 35, No. 7 (Jul., 1995), pp. 635-651 [1]

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