Will China Rule the World? Historical Perspectives on the Rise of China

AHA Session 176
Saturday, January 4, 2014: 11:30 AM-1:30 PM
Harding Room (Marriott Wardman Park)
Peter C. Perdue, Yale University
Will China Consume the World?
Karl Gerth, University of California, San Diego
China Today and Yesterday in the Global Media
Orville Schell, Asia Society
What Makes a Comparison with China Meaningful?
Pamela Kyle Crossley, Dartmouth College

Session Abstract

The past decades have been marked by the “rise of China”. The country’s booming economy, growing military strength, and diplomatic heft have caused pundits to talk of a new international order and a shift in global power. Some predict that China will reshape the world order significantly to suit its own interests. But we have been here before. Throughout its history, China has had a significant impact on the international system. It has reshaped Eurasia, inspired African and Asian countries, while both the PRC and Taiwan have participated in the Asian economic miracle since the seventies. Does China’s international conduct in the past provide us with perspective on its rise today? Do Confucian values still affect China’s foreign policy, in the form “tributary” notions among the current Chinese leadership? Were the disagreement, debate, and discussion then markedly different from that we are having now? We invite the participants to examine China’s imperial and modern history as a guide to thinking about the future of China in a world of interdependent nations tied to a global economy.

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