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Though not much noticed in the West, a great debate is raging across China today, from the law faculties of its major universities to the Central Party School to the dissident community, over “constitutionalism” and the establishment of rule of law.

In the wake of major corruption scandals, there are great expectations that the new leadership under Xi Jinping will respond to social pressure and pursue political reforms that have stalled over the last decade.

A leading China scholar, Cheng Li, and the now famous blind civil rights advocate Chen Guangcheng, who dramatically escaped house arrest and fled to the US Embassy in Beijing last year, comment on where this debate is headed and what it might—or might not—produce.