Home page > Writing and publishing in Africa > ’China Model’ breaking hegemony of Western universal values
| More

’China Model’ breaking hegemony of Western universal values

Wednesday 16 January 2013

(People’s Daily Online)

14:36, January 15, 2013

Universal values have suddenly become synonymous with Western hegemony. It is just like the concept of civilization. Developed countries have claimed themselves as civilized countries, and become the authoritative judge of "good," so the Roman Empire was described as being overrun by barbarians. In the modern era, Europeans have equated modernity with universality.

After the torch of Western civilization was passed to the United States, universal values have been used more frequently to ensure U.S. hegemony.

The rise of China and other emerging economies have dealt a major blow to Western universal values, resulting in various versions of the "China threat" theory.

Version one of the "China threat" theory: China’s development is unsustainable because it does not have the core values that Europe owns. Therefore, the West has paid great attention to human rights and democracy in China, and hopes to inject Western core values into the country.

Version two of the "China threat" theory: China has its own core values which are not universal, and denies the existence of universal values, so it has become an arch enemy of Western universal values.

Version three of the "China threat" theory: China has introduced values such as the "China Model" similar to Western universal values, and actively promoted its values to replace the dominant European values. Europeans are thus worried what if China rules the world someday.

China faces a "trilemma" under the universal values-led hegemonic system, and is considered as a major threat to the West no matter whether it has core values or how it treats universal values.

For China, re-globalization is the only way to eliminate the “China threat” theory. The current "globalization" is actually the "globalization" of Western systems and culture. "Real globalization" respects various cultures, ideas, and development models, and values cultural diversity.

In the new era, the world needs Chinese dreams because the "China Model" is enriching universal values.

Western universal values have suffocated diversity in the world in modern times. Insightful Europeans have realized that the Western civilization lacks momentum in dealing with an uncertain world, and is even unable to get rid of the debt crisis. They consider the Chinese civilization to be a good alternative to the Western civilization. China’s logic of "changing oneself and influencing the world" has evolved into the logic of "civilization transformation." This is the main information sent by China’s path of peaceful development featuring the rise of a great power, national rejuvenation, and civilization transformation. The logic of "civilization transformation" lies in realizing "world dreams" through "Chinese dreams," and providing systems and spiritual public goods that originate in China but belong to the world.

The great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation does not mean reverting to old ways, which cannot help solve today’s problems and global challenges. It does not mean copying Western systems either. The West is not very advanced, and is having a hard time right now. The great rejuvenation means rejuvenation, inclusiveness, and innovation.

Trough rejuvenating its traditional civilization, show tolerance to Western universal values and innovating human civilization, China can lay foundations for becoming a leading country in the world.

Source: People’s Daily Overseas Edition; Author: Wang Yiwei

See online: ’China Model’ breaking hegemony of Western universal values