A Confucian approach to teaching humility

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Humility as an aspect of our humanity is an important concept in both Confucian and Western philosophy. In the modern world, whether Western or not, there seems to be a growing need to promote humility, especially intellectual humility, as a fundamental virtue among students. In this paper, I first compare and contrast the Confucian and Western conceptions of humility. Then I explore a Confucian approach to teaching intellectual humility, arguing that the focus of teaching be directed towards cultivating the Confucian virtues of reflection (si) and reverence (jing). Copyright © 2022 Philosophy of Education Society of Australasia.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)207-216
JournalEducational Philosophy and Theory
Issue number2
Early online date19 Aug 2022
Publication statusPublished - 2023


Lam, C.-M. (2023). A Confucian approach to teaching humility. Educational Philosophy and Theory, 55(2), 207-216. doi: 10.1080/00131857.2022.2112032


  • Confucianism
  • Confucian virtues
  • Humility
  • Teaching of intellectual humility


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