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Title: Moral cultivation, meritocracy and the origin of petty people: a hypothesis
Authors: Lee, Sheng Yue
Keywords: Humanities::Philosophy
Issue Date: 2023
Publisher: Nanyang Technological University
Source: Lee, S. Y. (2023). Moral cultivation, meritocracy and the origin of petty people: a hypothesis. Final Year Project (FYP), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.
Abstract: In this essay, I will address a problem in Xunzi’s application of moral cultivation on petty people. Specifically, one of the main problems in accounting for petty people is that everyone is born as a petty person and petty people are defined to be people who freely express their dispositions and do not pursue moral cultivation, but some are able to undergo ethical transformation and some remain as petty people. This paper is trying to account for this phenomenon by stating that there are two types of petty people, one that is ignorant of moral cultivation, and one that is wilfully rejecting moral cultivation. Then, an account of the possible origin of the ignorant petty person is given, by introducing notions of natural circumstances and natural inequality of resource distribution. After that, an account of petty people who wilfully reject ritual and yi is explicated in terms of the moral meritocratic system and the potential impact on members of the society due to the consequences brought out by this system, such as the polarization of beliefs between different groups.
Schools: School of Humanities 
Fulltext Permission: restricted
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:SoH Student Reports (FYP/IA/PA/PI)

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