Peking University

Chinese Scholarship and Intellectuals, 1898-1937

By Xiaoqing Diana Lin

Subjects: Intellectual History, History, Education, Asian Studies
Series: SUNY series in Chinese Philosophy and Culture
Paperback : 9780791463222, 260 pages, January 2006
Hardcover : 9780791463215, 260 pages, December 2004

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Table of contents



1. From Gewu zhizhi to Building a New Moral Universe?
The Development of the Imperial Peking University Curriculum (1898–1911)

2. From Imperial to Civil Service Examinations
Changes in the Relationship Between the State and the Imperial Peking University (1898–1911)

3. From a Defense of Confucian Moral Knowledge to New Construction of Chinese Culture
Academic Developments at Peking University (1912–1937)

4. The Transformation of a Discursive Context
From a Paradigm of Chinese vs. Western Learning to One of Science vs. Metaphysics

5. The Uses of the Evolutionary Historical Framework
The History and Chinese Language and Literature Departments (1917–1927)

6. Grasping for Permanence in Historical Change

7. Confucian Moral Cultivation, Science, and Social Relevance
The Search for an Organizing Principle for the Disciplines of Education and Psychology (1910s–1930s)

8. Western Legal and Political Theories as Agents of Social Reform
The Development of the Law and Political Science Departments (1920s–1930s)





Discusses the first decades of Peking University and its role in shaping Chinese intellectual culture.


Peking University, founded in 1898, was at the center of the major intellectual movements of twentieth-century China. In this institutional and intellectual history, author Xiaoqing Diana Lin shows how the university reflected and shaped Chinese intellectual culture in an era of great change, one that saw both a surge of nationalism and an interest in Western concepts such as democracy, science, and Marxism. Lin discusses Peking University's spirit of openness and how the school both encouraged the synthesis of Chinese and Western knowledge and promoted Western learning for the national good. The work covers the introduction of modern academic disciplines, the shift from integrative learning to specialized learning, and the reinterpretation of Confucianism for contemporary times.

Xiaoqing Diana Lin is Associate Professor of History at Indiana University Northwest.