Boundaries of Tolerance: <i>Charter 08 and Debates over Political Reform</i>

Pitman B. Potter and Sophia Woodman

in Liu Xiaobo, Charter 08 and the Challenges of Political Reform in China

Published by Hong Kong University Press

Published in print August 2012 | ISBN: 9789888139064
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9789882209732 | DOI:
Boundaries of Tolerance: Charter 08 and Debates over Political Reform

Show Summary Details


This chapter chapter provides a critical review of Charter 08's compatibility and inconsistency with the existing constitutional and legal order. Charter 08 is a sophisticated document that both reflects a Western bourgeois agenda in advocating a new liberal order and engages the existing system in calling on the Party-state to live up to its own rhetoric of rights. Because the charter adopts official rights discourses to challenge the government, it opens a window of opportunity for a possible alliance between the Chartists outside the political system and reformers within the political system. In the end, the perceived danger of Charter 08 can only be understood within China's segmented publics, in which the Chinese government sets formal and informal rules to limit discussions of particular issues to specific institutional spaces.

Keywords: Charter 08; Liu Xiaobo; Human rights; China; Constititutionalism; Political reform

Chapter.  7442 words. 

Subjects: Society and Culture

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Hong Kong University Press »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.