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Habermas is characteristic of a western conception of civil society based on the free will of the individual and the form of voluntary association.

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This conception illustrates the influence of capitalism and the rise of a bourgeois society that stands in creative tension between the society and the state. This notion of contract has been analysed through Chinese perceptions as an affirmation of the importance of the State that appears as a bulwark of civilization against barbarism.

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Any alternative force to the State can be considered as an attempt to weaken its power and its civilizing role. In analysing the nature of civil society in China, we tend to look for democratic governance according to western political chronology, forgetting that China is an emerging authoritarian system, still negotiating a form of autonomous participatory citizenship. As David C.

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Schak notices in his book Civil society in Asia Ed. But more importantly, the very idea that civil society has to be made up of autonomous non-state voluntary organizations also needs to be challenged in the Asian context.

The principle of a dichotomy between state and society is historically rooted in the Western tradition of the Nation-State and does not take into account forms of neo-patrimonial system that find an illustration through State-led associations in China. Thimothy Brook and B.

Michael Frolic Dr. Michael Frolic Ed.

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Description Table of Contents Goodreads reviews This volume, the second instalment in the Series on Developing China — Translated Research from China, contains a collection of the most outstanding academic articles written by prestigious Chinese scholars of humanities and social sciences in the past three decades. The volume aims to present to international readers a comprehensive discussion on state and civil society, contextualized in the Chinese perspectives.

Important questions are posed, within the context of Chinese national conditions, particularities and histories, to the validity, applicability and viability of the state and civil society paradigm in the Western academia.

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The in-depth analysis of state and civil society, as accomplished in the volume, includes not only theoretical reflections, but also historical studies and empirical examinations. In the past, research done by Chinese scholars has not been adequately represented in English due to the language barrier. This translated volume shall in no small way supplement the global discourse on state and civil society with the voices from within China.