The Historical Logic of the Evolution of Knowledge Forms

Social Sciences in China (Chinese Edition)

No. 6, 2021


The Historical Logic of the Evolution of Knowledge Forms



Han Zhen


Human beings are inherently distinguished from animals because they work mentally. The more consciously intellectual practical activities are, the more they belong to the human sphere. If development and change in human society are the result of the development of productivity, then such productivity is often reflected in the knowledge it embodies. The more advanced a people or a country is in knowledge production, the more it takes the leader in world history. Human knowledge has progressed from an empirical form to a principle-based form divided into disciplines, and from there to a differentiated or overlapping form that took shape on information technology platforms. China was in the lead in the era of empirical knowledge, but lagged behind due to its backwardness in principle-based knowledge. Therefore, China should take advantage of the historical opportunity of this shift to a new form of knowledge to catch up and strive to become an innovative country once again. This requires us to take stock of the situation, to analyze the adverse factors blocking innovation, and to create a cultural atmosphere and arrangements for cultivating talent, all of which are conducive to innovation. Of course, China must also be aware of its own institutional advantages and other favorable conditions and be firmly confident that it will become a world-leading innovator. As long as China adheres to the strategy of being driven by scientific and technological innovation and prioritizing educational development; continuously expands scientific and technological exchanges and cooperation with other countries; and establishes an education system and cultivation arrangements conducive to the growth of innovative talent, it will be entirely possible for the country to achieve the goal of becoming a science and technology power.