The Human Community of Fate: A Conceptual History of China’s Ordoglobal Idea

Abstract: Since 2012, advocacy of a “community of shared future for mankind” or “human community of fate” (人类命运共同体) has become China’s most important foreign relations principle. The platform has become synonymous with Beijing’s positions on global governance, along with its related initiatives. This article traces the concept’s genealogy from the early twentieth-century European notion of Schicksalsgemeinschaft, through its varying invocations in corporatist as well as ordoliberal discourse in Europe and East Asia, and into the present. Pairing stable market order with insulation from democratic pressures, the “human community of fate” seeks less to challenge today’s status quo than entrench its core features.

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