Chinese classics contain 'profound human rights concepts,' says expert

(People's Daily Online) 10:36, May 15, 2024

The International Conference on the Ideas of Human Rights in Ancient Chinese Classics recently issued a call for papers from both domestic and international participants, aiming to enhance the exploration of human rights concepts found in ancient Chinese texts.

The conference will explore the ideas, strategies, systems, and history related to human rights in ancient Chinese classics. It will also encourage exchanges and mutual learning between Chinese civilization and other civilizations worldwide.

Photo shows Yuelu Academy at Hunan University in Changsha, central China's Hunan Province, the venue for the conference. (Photo provided to People's Daily Online)

Zheng Renzhao, an academic at the Institute of History, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, told People's Daily Online that exploring human rights concepts in classics helps establish a contemporary Chinese perspective on human rights. He also said it can help China contribute its own wisdom and solutions to the global human rights cause.

"In Chinese classics, we discover profound human rights concepts that reflect respect and concern for individuals, the importance placed on human life, and the pursuit of fairness, justice, harmony, and peaceful development," said Zheng. "We also find various rights, including equality, justice, survival, development, happiness, environment, peace, security, and natural resources. Many of these human rights concepts were ahead of their time."

The conference organizers have chosen the book series "The Hundred Classics on Traditional Chinese Culture" as a reference to help participants study and discuss human rights issues.

Zheng emphasized the importance of having an objective and unbiased understanding of Chinese history to build a modern civilization for the Chinese nation.

He added that by studying human rights concepts in Chinese classics, researchers can help promote the creative transformation and innovative development of China's traditional culture.


Int'l conference seeks papers on human rights in ancient Chinese classics

(Web editor: Hongyu, Liang Jun)


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