Han Fei

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Han Fei 韓非
BirthplaceState of Han
Occupation
philosopher

Han Fei

 

(also Han Fei-tzu). Born 288 B.C.; died 233 B.C. A founder of the Legist school (Fa-chia) in ancient China.

An official in the Ch’in state, Han Fei wrote most of the chapters of the treatise Han Fei-tzu, which focused on the problems of managing an administrative apparatus. As a supporter of despotic government, Han Fei developed a series of specific measures designed to limit the rights of the bureaucracy. According to the treatise, “under no circumstances should a ruler share power with anyone. If he yields to civil servants so much as a grain of his power, they will immediately turn this grain into one hundred grains” (ch. 31). Han Fei’s ideas greatly influenced the world view of the emperor Shih Huang-ti.

REFERENCE

Drevnekitaiskaia filosofiia, vol. 2. Moscow, 1973.
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The sovereign in the political thought of Hanfeizi and Thomas Hobbes.
It is surely no coincidence that two of Xunzi's greatest students, Li Si and Hanfeizi, were advisors to the First Emperor of Qin, the first real emperor of China, who conquered all the other states and whose policies unified and standardized spoken and written language, among other things.
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Hanfeizi jijie (Beijing: Zhonghua shuju, 2006), 389-40;
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A similar view is found in Hanfeizi [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII], ed.