Current location: HOME > STUDENTS ACTIVITIES > Content


Academic exchanges at Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey (8)

author: Zhang Renkai Date: 2023-11-03 View:

First of all, I appreciate it that I was chosen to take part in the program and it is a privilege for me. It was a so fantastic trip from which I got lots of unique experiences such as the lectures with different topics, the trips to Philadelphia and New York, the visit to Jonson&Jonson…And among all of these, one of what I am most impressed with is the method of ‘finding out the theme’ taught by Professor Christopher and I think if the program also has a theme, that must be culture.

After a tiring 24-hour flight when I finally went out of the airport and with the sunshine into my eyes, the sceneries around were gradually getting clear. The broader roads, the bigger cars, the taller trees, the various car license plate, the ambiguous traffic light for the pedestrian, the clouds, the detached houses, the people of different races… All of these made that I couldn’t help to say “wow” in surprise of the big differences between Chinese and American culture. I strongly felt the power of culture for the first time which deeply influences the way people think and act and also felt the diversity of cultures. The program did remind us to think the meaning and the role of culture.

One of the most famous philosophers, Ernst Cassirer, thinks the most important field in philosophy should be human’s culture. He stresses the independence of culture phenomenon from nature phenomenon and argues that the mission of philosophy is to figure out the puzzles in human culture which means to find a framework to give accounts for the internal unity of human activities, He also believes that only by the framework can we really understand what humanity is. Another famous philosopher Professor Sun Zhengyu, who is from our Jilin University, has developed the anthropology philosophy views from his teacher Professor Gao Qinghai. Professor Sun comes up with a theory to interpret the function of philosophy that is called “the representing theory” which suggests that the role of philosophy is to represent the specific way human exists in specific time and space, which means how people think, what people seek in a period of time and in an area of land. Both of they stresses the influence of culture.

All in all, culture is one of the most important topics in philosophy. It not only shapes the way we think but also creates the diversity of people. A philosopher once suggested that we human is “the miracle in every miracle”. It’s we human that observes the world. It’s we human that interprets the world. It’s we human that changes the world. And what behind all the huge power we human have is our culture. I think that we should realize the power of culture and be respectful to the various human cultures.