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  • Author or Editor: Xudong Fang (方旭東) x
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Abstract

Mohism and Confucianism are usually characterized as utilitarian and anti-utilitarian, respectively. This article argues that although Confucians do not espouse the kind of utilitarianism found in the Mozi, both Confucianism and Mohism qualify as forms of consequentialism in emphasizing that the outcome of a given behavior or action constitutes the basis for determining whether the latter qualifies as morally good. Through an analysis of the classical texts of the Analects and the Mengzi, I demonstrate that the similarities between the Confucian and Mohist perspectives on yi and li are much greater than their supposed differences, which have generally been taken for granted. Like Mohism, Confucianism upholds what we might call a “deliberated utilitarianism.”

Open Access
In: Journal of Chinese Humanities