2012 New History
P. O. Box 1-44, Nankang, Taipei 11529, Taiwan, R. O. C.
02-2782-9555 # 226

The Quest for Ethical Modernity during the Late Qing: Liang Qichao’s “Moral Revolution”

Chin-shing Huang

Institute of History and Philology, Academia Sinica

In an attempt to expose the shifts in moral discourse during the late Qing, this article considers three texts that perfectly mark the respective stages of these shifts. It is my observation that the transformation of moral consciousness during this period was accompanied by the establishment of modern ethics as an academic discipline. In order to grasp this complicated phenomenon, political, social, and institutional investigations need to be undertaken on top of textual analysis. Therefore, this essay stresses the shift of moral paradigms at the macro-level over the consistency or systematization of individual thinkers and concrete moral doctrines. , This historical account is thus premised on structural analysis.


Keywords: moral revolution, ethics, public morality, private morality