Kang Youwei


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Chinese philosopher and political reformer. A scholar, whose utopian work Da Tong Shu (One World Philosophy, 1900) portrayed Confucius as a reformer, he believed that China's crisis could only be solved through the modernization of institutions along modified western lines. In 1898 he persuaded the emperor Guangxu to adopt his policies. The resulting Hundred Days Reform was brought to a premature end by the empress dowager Cixi's conservative coup, and Kang spent the next 15 years in exile. He remained a monarchist and spent his last years trying unsuccessfully to engineer an imperial restoration.

Subjects: Religion.

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