China and Democracy

“Democracy should not only be a political or a legal system and should not merely be about making a choice and casting one’s vote.” —Weijun Chen, PLEASE VOTE FOR ME director

Although many people believe that American and Chinese societies are governed by polar-opposite philosophies, the dichotomies of “East” versus “West” are not quite so absolute. While Chinese society has traditionally emphasized the interests of the state over the struggle for individual rights, following an ideal of group harmony, interpretations of state and individual interests have also shifted with time.

From nineteenth-century democratic ideals to modern protest movements, democracy and China are not mutually exclusive.

View a timeline of China’s “outbreaks of democracy” >>

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