Associate Professor of History, East Asian Languages and Civilizations, and the College

Faculty Member, Center for East Asian Studies

PhD'75 Harvard University

Mailing Address

The University of Chicago
Department of History
1126 E. 59th Street, Mailbox 116
Chicago, IL 60637

Social Science Research Building, room 211 – Office
(773) 702-8390 – Office telephone
(773) 702-7550 – Fax

Field Specialties

Modern Chinese intellectual history; Chinese social history; Chinese local and rural history


Honored for Exceptional Contributions at the Ninth China National Book Awards


Guy Alitto has taught in all areas of Chinese studies, including the modern and classical Chinese languages and premodern history. Most of his courses, and all of his graduate courses, are in the area of modern Chinese history. His research in the last twenty years has been in modern intellectual history, local histories at the village, county, and regional levels (Zouping county in Shandong, the Wanxi area of southwestern Henan), family history (the Liangs of Guilin), and social history (Chinese banditry 1880–1950). He is especially interested in the connections between the political-social and the intellectual-cultural realms, as manifest in specific individuals and local cultures. He continues to participate in the ongoing Chinese discussion on culture and modernization through publications and lectures in the Chinese language.

Recent Awards

2012–13 Outstanding Chinese Documentary Film, Central China TV. As subject of Dialogues with the Last Confucian, 2012.

2012 Best Book Award, National Library of China. For 吾曹不出如苍生何? [If We Don’t Go Forth, What Will Happen to the People?].

2011 Outstanding Contributions to Sino-Foreign Exchange, Phoenix TV Satellite Networks. For 因你中国更美丽 [You Bring Charm to China].

2007 Ten Best Books of the Last Year, 新华网 [New China Web]. For 这个世界会好吗? [Will Man Survive?].


Editor, translator, contributor. Reconstituting Confucianism: Theory and Practice in the Contemporary World. Berlin: Springer, 2015.

这个世界会好吗? [Will Man Survive?]. Beijing: Sanlian, 2006; republished, 2009, 2012; 2nd ed., 2015.

Zuihoude rujia: Liang Shuming yu Zhongguo xiandaihua de liangnan [The Last Confucian: Liang Shuming and the Dilemma of Chinese Modernity]. Beijing: Foreign Studies University Teaching and Research Press, 2014.

"中国的“体”在于生活中的道德实现" [China's Essence Lies in the Moral Practice of Everyday Life]. Social Science View (May 5, 2014).

"汉学与世界文化的交流" [Sinology and Communications among World Cultures]. World Sinology 12 (Autumn 2013): 2–7.

"这个世界会好吗”如何完成的” [How Will Man Survive? came about]. Bishan 2 (2013): 221–232.

"Some Reflections on the Historiography of the Chinese Republican Revolution." In Lecture Series on Republic of China: A Centennial History, 176–210. Taipei: Academia Historica, 2012.

吾曹不出如苍生何?—梁漱溟晚年口述 [If We Don’t Go Forth, What Will Happen to the People?]. Beijing: Foreign Language Teaching and Research Press, 2010.

Has Man a Future: Dialogues with the Last Confucian. Beijing: Foreign Language Teaching and Research Press, 2010.

"Ershiyi shiji de shijiewenhua hui yanhuazhi rujiahua de wenhua ma?" [Will Twenty-first-Century Culture Evolve into a Confucianized Culture?]. Dushu  (January 1996).

"Zhongguo wenhua xingcheng de yaosu ji qi tezheng" [The Essential Elements in the Formation of Chinese Culture and Their Special Features]. In Guo Tingyi xiansheng jiuzhi danchen jinian lunwenji, 2 vols, edited by Chen Sanjing. Taipei, 1995.

"Shijie fanweinei de fanxiandaihua sichao: lun wenhua shouchengzhiyi" [Antimodernization Thought Trends]. In A Worldwide Perspective: On Cultural Conservatism. Guiyang: Guizhou Provincial Press, 1991.

The Last Confucian: Liang Shu-ming and the Chinese Dilemma of Modernity, 2nd ed. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1986.