On September 13, 2020 at 15:00, Professor Long Denggao from Tsinghua University was invited to Nanjing Normal University to give a lecture entitled "Scholar and Gentry or Civil Society: Traditional Chinese Governance Mechanisms at the Grassroots Level" in Conference Room 213, Building 400. The lecture was hosted by Professor Qi Chunfeng, President of Tsinghua University, and was attended by both offline and online students and teachers.
At the beginning of the lecture, Professor Qi Chunfeng briefly introduced Professor Long Denggao's research direction and academic achievements. Professor Long Denggao is a professor and doctoral advisor of the Institute of Economics of Tsinghua University, and a special professor of the Yangtze River Scholar of the Ministry of Education, mainly engaged in research on Chinese economic history, institutional changes, overseas Chinese economy. Professor Long is the chief expert of a major project of the National Social Science Foundation of China, an expert advisory member of the Overseas Chinese Affairs Office of the State Council, vice president of the Chinese Overseas Chinese History Association, and winner of the 18th (2018) Sun Yefang Economic Science Award.
Prof. Long Deng Gao presents "The different images of the gentry: why the great difference?" The theme of the lecture is introduced, in which seven issues are explained: how the gentleman functions through civil organizations, the characteristics of public goods and the role of civil organizations, the characteristics of public property and its formation through transactions, institutional governance - simple democracy, the use of markets and financial instruments to mobilize social resources, civil organizations and institutional platforms are expansive, concluding remarks and insights.
Mr. Long's basic point can be summarized as follows: if we take the gentleman as the main provider of private public goods, we will see the role of personalizing and moralizing the gentleman; if we take the grassroots as the main provider of public goods, we will see the role of organizing and institutionalizing the grassroots. The individualized gentleman has a limited lifespan, and he needs to continue to produce public goods; moreover, the production of public goods also requires the mobilization of sufficient social resources. Thus, the individual gentry's ability alone is not enough, therefore, the grassroots public goods provision subject is a civil society organization, which needs to recognize and summarize the institutional resources of civil public goods production.
During the interactive session, teachers and students, both online and offline, were eager to ask questions, and Professor Long answered in detail seven questions from the audience, which were related to the local gentry, the declining role of grassroots organizations, the internal logic of state governance in the Republic of China and before, the role of the capacity of private self-organization, the right of private self-organization to speak in China, the independence of private organizations, and the mutual prevention between the government and private organizations.
And then Prof. Qi Chunfeng summarized the sharing of Prof. Long and expressed his heartfelt thanks to Prof. Long for coming. As everyone, Mr. Long was very attentive to collect the questions raised by the audience, and he took screenshots of them at the end of the presentation. The lecture was wonderful, the questions were interactive, and at the end a few fans asked Mr. Long to sign his collection of Mr. Lon.