Friday, 17 April 2015

Teaching ‘Western Values’ in China -

As I was saying... Despite all the crap going on in China, censorship, corruption 'n all, I share professor Bell's special affection for China. I've been here and there in China for 38 years now. It's maddening, yes, but lovable too. 
And note what I said in an earlier post about the curiosity and openness of the average Chinese folk which is reflected in Bell's article in the amount of freedom in his Peking classrooms to discuss anything, no matter how sensitive. 
Clip from the article:
<<It's worth asking why I continue to work in an academic environment with such constraints. Half of my family is Chinese, and I have special affection for the place. It helps to have great students and colleagues. Mr. Fukuyama's "end of history" thesis put his finger on another key reason: A world where nobody argues about political ideals may be peaceful, but it's boring. China is not boring. 
Chinese-style democratic meritocracy is the only viable alternative to liberal democracy, and I have front row seats to China's experiment. What else could a political theorist ask for?
That said, I am in favor of free speech in universities. And my views are widely shared in Chinese academia: Whatever people say in public, I haven't met a single Chinese intellectual — socialist, liberal or Confucian — who argues in private discussion for censorship of scholarly works. Censorship only serves to alienate intellectuals.>>

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