Yutang Jin is a Postdoctoral Research Associate in the Department of Politics. His primary research interests include Confucian political theory, comparative political theory, and democratic theory. Along the matrix of interpretation/reconstruction, he specializes in Confucian scholarship (ruxue) and how it relates to political order, which involves the interpretation of Confucian political thought. In addition to interpretation, he is also interested in reconstructing Confucianism and bringing it into dialogue with Western philosophical traditions for both modern East Asia and the wider world.

His PhD dissertation explored the relationship between classic Confucian thought and democratic theory, examining whether canonical Confucian texts can provide intellectual sources of justification for democracy. His current project builds on his doctoral work by discussing the normative plausibility of what he calls “Confucian leadership democracy” as well as its practical implications for East Asia. With Stephen Angle of Wesleyan University, he is also working on a book translation project, Progressive Confucianism and Its Critics. His peer-reviewed articles have appeared in Philosophy East and West, Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy, Comparative Philosophy, as well as Culture and Dialogue. He was educated at Peking University (LL.B., international relations), London School of Economics (M.Sc., European studies), and Oxford University (M.Sc., Ph.D., politics, political theory track).

Selected Publications

  • Ethics/Politics Division, Commoners, and Realism in Confucian Political Order: The Revisionist Reading of Classic Confucianism and Its Problems,” Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy (forthcoming)
  • "What Confucianism and for Whom? The Value and Dilemma of Invoking Confucianism in Confucian Political Theories," Journal of Value Inquiry (forthcoming)
  • “Confucian Leadership Democracy: A Roadmap,” Comparative Philosophy 12(2) (2021), 79-102.
  • “Classic Confucian Thought and Political Meritocracy: A Text-Based Critique,” Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy (online first, 2021)
  • “Between Political Meritocracy and Participatory Democracy: Toward Realist Confucian Democracy,” Culture and Dialogue (special issue on “Confucianism: Comparisons and Controversies”) 8(2) (2020), 251-279.
  • “Confucian Justifications of Democracy: A Critique of Joseph Chan’s Democratic Theory,” Philosophy East and West 70(2) (2020), 374-394.
  • “Tongdong Bai: Against Political Equality: the Confucian Case,” Res Publica (online first, 2021)

Selected Honors and Awards

  • IARU-Santander Global Summer Program Scholarship and bursaries from the Oxford University Alumni Association (full funding for summer school study at the University of Tokyo, 2017)
  • Finalist for the Second Uehiro Prize for Practical Ethics (2016)