Tianxia Conference 2022: Formulating a Minimalist Morality for a Planetary Order: Alternative Cultural Perspectives

August 17, 2022


Location: Zoom
Language: English
Registration: Please click here to register. Registration deadline is August 15, 2022.


I. Keynote Session: 8:00-10:30

8:00 – 10:30 Aug 18, 2022 (UTC+8)
Chair: Roger T. AMES
Peking University

Keynote: The Moral Minimum (8:00-9:30)
Michael WALZER
Institute for Advanced Study

An Ethical and Social Epistemology for Meeting Global Crises (9:30-10:00)
David B. WONG
Duke University

From Epistemology to Justice: Thinking through a Cross-Cultural Exemplar (10:00-10:30)
University of Hawaii

II. On the Possibility of a Minimalist Ethic

15:00-17:00 Aug 18, 2022 (UTC+8)
Chair: WEN Haiming
Renmin University of China

Against Order: Interregnum and Ethics of Disorder (15:00-15:30)
LV Xiaoyu
Peking University

Maximalist and Minimalist Justice in a Scalable Tianxia World Order (15:30-16:00)
South China University of Technology

Minimalist Amorality: A Contemporary Daoist Perspective (16:00-16:30)
Hans-Georg MOELLER
University of Macau

Qinqin: Between the Same and the Other (16:30-17:00)
SUN Xiangchen
Fudan University

III. An Ethical and Social Epistemology for a Minimalist Ethic

20:30-22:30 Aug 18, 2022 (UTC+8)
Chair: James BEHUNIAK
Colby College

The Topos of Mu and the Predicative Self (20:30-21:00)
University of North Texas

The United Nations and Minimalist Morality (21:00-21:30)
Duke University

May No One Suffer: More than a Minimalist Ethic (21:30-22:00)
Jadavpur University

Minimalist Morality among Civilizational Dyarchies (22:00-22:30)
Harvard University

IV. Liberalism and the Alternatives for a Minimalist Ethic

10:30-13:00 Aug 19, 2022 (UTC+8)
Chair: PENG Feng
Peking University

Tianxia with Liberal Democratic Characteristics? (10:30-11:00)
University of Arizona

Tianxia as a Trans-systemic Society (11:00-11:30)
Tsinghua University

Beyond the Polarised Human Rights Politics in the United Nations Human Rights Council (11:30-12:00)
HE Baogang
Deakin University

Wisdom and Engaged Global Citizenship (12:00-12:30)
American University

Remapping Global Realities: The Need for Building a More Sustainable and Inclusive World (12:30-13:00)
Addis Ababa University

V. Life Forms, Social Justice, and a Minimalist Ethic

21:00-23:00 Aug 19, 2022 (UTC+8)
Chair: Karl-Heinz POHL
University of Trier

Ritual and Geopolitics: The Case of Judaism (21:00-21:30)
University of Kentucky

Confucians and Daoists: On Minimal Morality (21:30-22:00)
College of the Holy Cross

The Confucian Concept of the Political and ‘Family Feeling’ (xiao 孝) as its Minimalist Morality (22:00-22:30)
Roger T. AMES
Peking University

Will to Control, Will to Power, Will to Strength, Will to biantong (22:30-23:00)
University of Chicago


composed by Arswain
machine learning consultation by Anna Tskhovrebov
commissioned by the Berggruen Institute
premiered at the Bradbury Building
downtown Los Angeles
april 22, 2022

Human perception of what sounds “beautiful” is necessarily biased and exclusive. If we are to truly expand our hearing apparatus, and thus our notion of beauty, we must not only shed preconceived sonic associations but also invite creative participation from beings non-human and non-living. We must also begin to cede creative control away from ourselves and toward such beings by encouraging them to exercise their own standards of beauty and collaborate with each other.

Movement I: Alarm Call
‘Alarm Call’ is a long-form composition and sound collage that juxtaposes, combines, and manipulates alarm calls from various human, non-human, and non-living beings. Evolutionary biologists understand the alarm call to be an altruistic behavior between species, who, by warning others of danger, place themselves by instinct in a broader system of belonging. The piece poses the question: how might we hear better to broaden and enhance our sense of belonging in the universe? Might we behave more altruistically if we better heed the calls of – and call out to – non-human beings?

Using granular synthesis, biofeedback, and algorithmic modulation, I fold the human alarm call – the siren – into non-human alarm calls, generating novel “inter-being” sonic collaborations with increasing sophistication and complexity. 

Movement II: A.I.-Truism
A synthesizer piece co-written with an AI in the style of Vangelis’s Blade Runner score, to pay homage to the space of the Bradbury Building.

Movement III: Alarmism
A machine learning model “learns” A.I.Truism and recreates Alarm Call, generating an original fusion of the two.

Movement IV: A.I. Call
A machine learning model “learns” Alarm Call and recreates A.I.Truism, generating an original fusion of the two.

RAVE (IRCAM 2021) https://github.com/acids-ircam/RAVE