Chinese Public Intellectuals

An Annotated Bibliography to Published Translations in English

This guide offers researchers and readers an annotated bibliography and guide to translations of the writings of many public intellectuals active in China or in the Sinophone intellectual world (usually through the Internet). Almost all translations noted are into English, though some French and other translations are noted. The purpose of this guide is to provide English readers a more ready access and a preliminary introduction to the recent public writings of Chinese thinkers and writers who have addressed themselves to the debates over the nature of China, China’s history, China’s role in the world, and how to build China’s future. It cannot cover all the specialized writings on technical fields and formal academic disciplines or even public advocacy in environment, law, family issues, health, food safety, and similar important issues. Rather, the focus is on intellectuals who seem to have something of a reading public and who address themselves to broader social, cultural and political issues. Broadly speaking we seek to track what China’s intellectual elites have to say about China and its future, including these intellectuals’ disagreements with each other.

The guide is organized in alphabetical order of surname in the pinyin system. Each writer’s broad intellectual orientation (思潮) as generally recognized (and contested) in China today is noted: New Left (新左翼), Liberal (自由主义), New Confucian (新儒学), and Unclassified (派别之外). Within the groupings authors appear in alphabetical order. Under each author are listed translations in: whole books, journal articles, book chapters, on web sources, as well as list of relevant blogs written in Chinese. At the end we list reference materials cited in our annotations.

Other sources available online:


Chen Pingyuan 陳平原 b. 1954

Chen Pingyuan is professor of Chinese Literature at Peking University and Chinese University of Hong Kong. His major works include “The Literati’s Chivalric Dreams” and “The Establishment of Modern Scholarship in China”. Chen is known for his re-evaluation of the history of modern Chinese literature. He proved the importance of traditional Chinese elements as well as Western literature and modernity in the development of modern Chinese literature. An interview with him appears in the book One China, Many Paths, so one might assumes that he has new left leanings, but these are not immediately obvious from his scholarship. He is generally known as a liberal scholar.

Cui Weiping 崔卫平 b.1956

Cui Weiping is a professor at Beijing Film Academy (北京电影学院) and social critic whose works focus on literary theory, political philosophy and Eastern European intellectual and political culture. She is a well-known scholar, professional translator and cultural critic. She is known as a liberal.

Cui Zhiyuan 崔之元 b. 1963

New Left Cui Zhiyuan is a professor at the School of Public Policy and Management, Tsinghua University. He received his Ph.D. in Political Science from University of Chicago in 1995.  He is a leading member of the New Left through his work on alternatives to neo-liberal capitalism. His research mainly focus on the political economy of reform […]

Deng Zhenglai 邓正来 (1956 – 2013)

UNCLASSIFIED Deng Zhenglai was a political scientist and a scholar of jurisprudence and political philosophy. He was a distinguished professor at Fudan University, Shanghai; and also the editor-in-chief of Fudan China Studies and China Social Sciences Quarterly. Often credited with introducing the fundamentalist capitalist thinking of Friedrich Hayek to China, Deng is best known for […]

Ding Xueliang 丁学良

Liberal Prof. X.L. Ding is interested in extra-ordinary phenomena in socio-political processes in China particularly with a comparative perspective. Currently he teaches courses on Modern Dictatorship in West and East, and the Chinese Cultural Revolution 1966-76 at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. He intends to develop courses on The Politics of Chinese […]

Ding Yun 丁耘 b. 1969

NEW LEFT Ding Yun is a professor at the Department of Philosophy, Fudan University and the Director of the Center for the Study of Intellectual History. His area of studies include German philosophy and ancient Greek philosophy; especially focuses on metaphysics, comparative philosophy, political philosophy and the history of ideas. Journal Articles Ding, Yun. “The […]

Fan Gang 樊钢 b.1953

LIBERAL Fan Gang is a Chinese prominent economist and one active reform advocates. He is currently serving as a professor at the Graduate School of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences and at the Peking University HSBC Business School, as well as the director of China’s National Economic Research Institute. He is also the Secretary-General of […]