By Jacques Derrida
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Additional info for Adieu to Emmanuel Levinas
Regarding politics (zheng), there is no difference between China and the West. . These [rules and laws] are the same in both the ancient and L IANG Q ICHAO 21 present time, in both the West and China. They are common principles for all nations” (Liang, 1999, vol. 1, p. 137). ” He wrote in 1899: The Westerners, such as Grotius and Hobbes, who were all ordinary people, have written the universal laws of all nations (wanguo gongfa), and the whole world obeys them. The Chunqiu written by Confucius was also the universal laws of all ages.
221–2, 233–5). Martin used the 1846 edition of the book. With the aid of four Chinese scholars, he ﬁnished his rendering around 1864. His version, entitled Wanguo gongfa (Universal Laws of All Nations), could hardly be called a translation, not only because much of the original contents were omitted, but also because the translators mainly provided summaries of passages rather than word-by-word translations. In his preface, Martin used the idea that every human being has rights as an example to illustrate the idea of (national) rights.
The Chinese have not been aware that its guo was one nation or state [among many]. For China has remained united since ancient time; it has been surrounded by “little barbarians,” who do not have civilization or government and thus could not be called a nation or state. We Chinese people do not see them as equals. Therefore, for thousands of years, China has been isolated. We call China the world, not a nation. . Secondly, there has been no awareness of the distinction between a nation (or state) and a dynasty (or court).