China’s rise to prosperity on the international stage has been accompanied by increased tensions with international standards of law and governance. Exporting Virtue? examines human rights as an example of China’s international assertiveness and considers the implications of internationalizing PRC human rights policy and practice. Pitman B. Potter suggests that in the absence of clear and enforceable global human rights standards, China has been free to pursue its political interests and policy initiatives. Couched in terms of virtue but manifested as authoritarianism, China’s international human rights activism invites scholars and policy makers around the world to engage critically with the issue. Drawing on both Chinese- and English-language sources, Exporting Virtue? investigates the challenges that China’s human rights orthodoxy poses to international norms and institutions, offering normative and institutional analysis and providing suggestions for policy response.
1 Human Rights in China Past and Present: From Confucian Governance to Regime-led Development
2 China’s Challenge to International Human Rights Standards: From Qualified Acceptance to Active Revision
3 Case Study: Controlling Political Expression
4 China’s International Economic Relations: Coordination with Human Rights Orthodoxy
5 Case Studies: Coordinating Human Rights and Trade Policy in Labour Relations and Environmental Protection
Notes; Authorities Cited; Index
Exporting Virtue is a meticulously researched and forcefully argued indictment of faux human rights activism that "seems mainly to be an exercise in justifying authoritarianism, virtue claims notwithstanding."
~Scott Costen, The Sidebar
This book is a sound corrective to the often-heard but untenable claims by communist dictators in general that economic, social and cultural rights have precedence over civil and political ones.
~Alex Dessein, King's College London, Europe-Asia Studies Journal