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New Publication: From "Tribute System" to "Peaceful Rise"

A new special issue of The Journal of American-East Asian Relations offers papers originally presented at USCI conference.

September 2, 2009

The spring/summer 2009 issue of The Journal of American-East Asian Relations (volume 16, numbers 1-2) is now available from Imprint Publications. Entitled "From 'Tribute System' to 'Peaceful Rise': American Historians, Political Scientists, and Policy Analysts Discuss China’s Foreign Relations," the issue offers revised versions of papers produced for and discussed at a workshop/symposium held at USC in February 2008. (Click here for more on the symposium, including a video of Harry Harding's presentation.)

As we try to understand China’s important place in today’s world we sometimes want to draw insights from its millennial history of relations with foreign peoples, which sometimes took the form of a “tribute system.” Does this heritage make China's talk of a "peaceful rise" less convincing, its policy-makers more inclined to seek “hegemony,” less inclined to the give and take of diplomacy among equals? This is a unique collection of papers by historians, political scientists, and policy analysts who have made important contributions to this range of issues. The variety of approaches and intellectual styles is wide, but the papers converge and interact with each other in illuminating ways. This collection will offer food for thought for anyone interested in these issues, including students in advanced undergraduate and graduate courses on Chinese foreign relations.

John E. Wills, Jr., “Introduction”

Michael D. Swaine, “The Policy Analyst and Historical Perspectives: Notes of a Practitioner”

John E. Wills, Jr., “How Many Asymmetries?: Continuities, Transformations, and Puzzles in the Study of Chinese Foreign Relations”

Alice Lyman Miller, “Some Things We Used to Know about China’s Past and Present (But Now, Not So Much)”

James L. Hevia, “Tribute, Asymmetry, and Imperial Formations: Rethinking Relations of Power in East Asia”

Peter C. Perdue, “China and Other Colonial Empires”

Brantly Womack, “Recognition, Deference, and Respect: Generalizing the Lessons of an Asymmetric Asian Order”

Harry Harding, “How the Past Shapes the Present: Five Ways in Which History Affects China’s Contemporary Foreign Relations”

[The conference papers were originally shared at the conference website, but revised versions are now available in a special double issue of The Journal of American-East Asian Relations (v.16, n. 1/2 2009) and in a book Past and Present in China's Foreign Policy (2011).]