The Utopian Impulse in Modern China

The Utopian Impulse in Modern China

The Utopian Impulse in Modern China - All Events

ORGANISED BY : Singapore Chinese Culture Centre, NUS Department of Chinese Studies, Wan Boo Sow Research Centre for Chinese Culture

The Utopian Impulse in Modern China

Utopianism has profoundly shaped political thought, cultural imaginaries, and social engagement since its introduced into the Chinese context in the 19th century. This lecture discusses various utopian imaginations during the late Qing and early Republican era, with a specific focus on Kang Youwei’s Book of Great Unity (1901). In this book, Kang envisioned the dissolution of various political concepts such as nation, family, and race in the future utopian society, causing a shock effect among late Qing intelligentsia. However, Kang also cautioned against the immediate realisation of utopian ideals through action. Through a detailed analysis of the antinomies of Kang Youwei’s utopian thought, this lecture will shed light on the contemporary implications of utopian thought in modern China.


To attend in-person: 

Attend online: 


Speaker(s) biography:

Professor Wang Fan-sen

Professor Wang received his Ph.D. from Princeton University in 1993. He was elected as Academician of Academia Sinica and Fellow of the Royal Historical Society of the United Kingdom. Previously, he served as the Director of the Institute of History and Philology, and Vice President, and Acting President of Academia Sinica. Currently, he is the President of the Taiwan Comprehensive University System. His research is mainly centred around the cultural-intellectual history of early modern and modern China. His recent works include Thought as a Way of Life, Is Enlightenment Continuous? and Public Opinion in Early Modern China.



Dr Tu Hang, Assistant Professor
Department of Chinese Studies, National University of Singapore

Event Date & Time

Aug 19, 2023 - Aug 19, 2023

Start Time: 2pm
End Time: 3.30pm

Duration: 1.5hrs

No intermission.


SCCC Recital Studio, Level 6 and online

Event Language

Conducted in Mandarin

Suitable For

All ages



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