© 2019

Redefining A Philosophy for World Governance


Part of the Key Concepts in Chinese Thought and Culture book series (KCCTC)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xvii
  2. Tingyang Zhao
    Pages 1-19
  3. Tingyang Zhao
    Pages 43-65
  4. Back Matter
    Pages 67-68

About this book


This Key Concepts pivot discusses the contemporary relevance of the ancient Chinese concept of Tianxia or ‘All-Under-Heaven’ and argues the case for a new global political philosophy. ‘All-under-heaven’ is a conceptualization of the world as the composition of three realms: the physical, psychological and political, which places inclusivity and harmony at the heart of a global world view above other considerations, transcending the notion of nation state. In a highly interconnected and globalized world, the idea of Tianxia can offer a new 21st century vision of international relations and world order, based on a harmonized global organization defined by the “all-inclusiveness principle.”  Promoting the ontology of co-existence and relational rationality hand in hand with rational risk aversion in a globalized world, this pivot makes the case that Tianxia could offer a new vision for contemporary world order, redefining the universality and legitimacy of politics.


All-under-heaven Ancient Chinese Concept of Tianxia New Vision for Contemporary World Order Relational Rationality Ontology of Co-existence and Relational Rationality Universality and Legitimacy of Politics Classical Chinese Philosophy of Tianxia

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Chinese Academy of Social SciencesBeijingChina

About the authors

Tingyang Zhao is a Research Fellow of Institute of Philosophy, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, China.

Liqing Tao is Professor at College of Staten Island/CUNY, USA.

Bibliographic information


“The current world seems to be on fire. Is there a way to save it? In this provocative book, Zhao Tingyang argues that the concept of a new Tianxia or all-under-heaven can offer an alternative blueprint for creating a more peaceful and inclusive world. Zhao dares to provide a new vision for creating a better world, which challenges the current academic practice that often discourages dreaming. … this book offers inspiration and hope for us to dream of a different and better world.” (Xiao Alvin Yang, Journal of Chinese Governance, January 20, 2021)