The China Wave: Rise of a Civilizational State

The China Wave: Rise of a Civilizational State

Language: English

Pages: 208

ISBN: 193813401X

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

This is a best-seller in China and a geopolitical book for our times. As a leading thinker from China, Zhang Weiwei provides an original, comprehensive and engrossing study on the rise of China and its effective yet controversial model of development, and the book has become a centerpiece of an unfolding debate within China on the nature and future of the world's most populous nation and its possible global impact. China's rise, according to Zhang, is not the rise of an ordinary country, but the rise of a different type of country, a country sui generis, a civilizational state, a new model of development and a new political discourse which indeed questions many of the Western assumptions about democracy, good governance and human rights. The book is as analytical as it is provocative, and should be required reading for everyone concerned with the rise of China and its global implications.

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urbanization over the past three decades, and it is my estimate that in the next two to three decades, China will continue to experience the world’s fastest pace of urbanization, which will generate more opportunities for development than any other country in the world. It is true that the urban-rural gap in China is quite large, but the Chinese rural areas have also undergone an enormous transformation over the past three decades, though smaller in scale than the cities. Some in China are so

civilization-state are helpful for better understanding the rise of China and its relations with the West and his views have also inspired some of my research on China as a civilizational state. Yet, interestingly, despite his break with Euro-centric perceptions, Jacques still perceives a tension between the nation-state and the civilization-state, and this tension may, he argues, lead China in different directions. For instance, he hypothesizes that China may eventually revive a certain form of

and its approximate English translation is “winning or B1345_Ch-05.indd 131 2/28/2012 10:07:42 AM FA b1345 The China Wave: Rise of a Civilizational State 132 Chapter 5 losing the hearts and minds of the people”. The concept was first put forward by Mencius (372–289 BC), and minxin is different from the concept of minyi (public opinion), as public opinion can be fleeting and change overnight. Minxin refers more to the whole and long-term interest of a nation and is therefore more stable

attractive buildings are those left over from the era of the 19th and early 20th centuries, and their scale of urban renovation is much smaller than in any cities in China’s developed regions. This may also mean that Eastern Europe had built enough residential housing for its citizens during the old era, while China had to build a lot of new residential areas to make up for the insufficient housing supply prior to 1978. China’s scale of urban renewal and new metropolitan skylines are what few

democracy. Jiří Dienstbier, the former foreign minister of the Czech Republic, observed in an op-ed piece in The New York Times in October 2006: “Citizens’ dissatisfaction is growing everywhere, and participation rates in elections are dwindling, while public confidence in government, Parliament and the whole political process is ebbing away.”1 Indeed, these findings largely tally with my field observations in these countries. Twenty years have passed since the 1989 revolution, yet these

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