Faculty Scholarly Dissemination Grants


Harmony and Cultivation


Philosophy Department


College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Date Range



Social and Behavioral Sciences


This is a discussion of Chenyang Li's "Confucian Philosophy of Harmony," Hong Xiao's "Harmony in the Family," and Daniel Bell's "Harmony Index." It points out that harmony requires not only proper social-political structure, policies, and regulations, but more importantly also the cultivation of the people and the culture. While social-political structure, policy, and regulation are necessary for harmony, they can not be sufficient. The point shows that the minimalist liberal approach to social and political philosophy is inadequate for harmony, whether in the scale of within a family or as large as a society.Confucianism can be an indispensable contributor to contemporary social political discourse not only because it brings forward harmony as a value no less fundamental than liberty, equality, and justice, but also in reminding us that cultivation of the person and the culture is essential to human flourishing.

Conference Name

Central Division Meeting of American Philosophical Association

Conference Location

Chicago, IL

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