1st Edition

China and Democracy Reconsidering the Prospects for a Democratic China

Edited By Suisheng Zhao Copyright 2001
    296 Pages
    by Routledge

    296 Pages
    by Routledge

    China's dramatic economic growth in the last two decades of the last century and the prospect of its rise as a great power in this new one have greatly increased its weight and importance in world affairs. Consequently the progress, or lack of progress, of China's transition to democracy has become a central concern of the international community. This timely collection brings together many well-known scholars to systematically explore China's current government and assess that transition toward democracy. The contributors seek to bridge the gap between normative theories of democracy and empirical studies of China's political development by providing a comprehensive overview of China's domestic history, economy, and public political ideologies.
    Overall the volume contends that Chinese culture and Confucianism are not the obstacles to democratic transition that some scholars have said they are, and that the success of market reforms has eroded authoritarian rule. This weakening does not guarantee a successful transition, however, and the contributors show that there are many reasons to be skeptical about the short-term prospects for democracy in China, including historical failures, the underdevelopment of civil society, political apathy, and competing social values. Though China's political culture is essentially neither anti-democratic not pro-democratic, it must still overcome many obstacles in order to achieve democracy.

    Forward Larry Diamond. Introduction Suisheng Zhao. Part : China's Search for Democracy in the Twentieth Century 1. Chinese Democracy: The Lesson of Failure Andrew J. Nathan. 2. A Tragedy of History: China's Search for Democracy in the Twentieth Century Suisheng Zhao. Part II: Chinese Political Culture and Democracy 3. Confucianism and Western Democracy. 4. Democracy in China Enbao Wang and Regina F. Tutunik. 5. New Moral Foundation of Chinese Democratic Institutional Design Baogang He Part III: Chinese State-Society Relationship and Democracy 6. Conceptual Evolution of Democracy in Intellectual Circles: Rethinking State and Society Yijiang Ding 7. Plural Institutionalism and the Emergence of Intellectual Public Spaces in China: A Case Study of Four Intellectual Groups Edward X. Gu 8. The Limits of the Chinese State: Public Morality and the Xu Honggang Campaign Dawn Einwalter. Part IV: Prospect for Democracy in China at the Dawn of the Twenty First Century 9. The Prospects for Democratization in China: Evidence from the 1995 Beijing Area Study Daniel V. Dowd, Allen Carlson and Mingming Shen. 10. The Political Pragmatism of Chinese University Students: Ten Years After the 1989 Movement Che Po chan. 11. Economic Development and Village Elections in Rural China Tinajian Shi. 12. Chinese Nationalism and Authoritarianism in the 1990's Suisheng Zhao.


    Suisheng Zhao

    "Suisheng Zhao successfully puts together a group of scholars to address China's democratic prospects in an unfamiliar yet provocative way. Current academic writings focus primarily on the possibility of China's transforming into a democracy, or on the general and the specific condictions through which China will eventually qualify to become a democracy. Zhao's book is different because it provides some Chinese perspectives that are rarely found in the literature elsewhere." -- The China Review
    "This delicately researched and deftly woven volume offers intriguing, in-depth analyses in reconsideration of China's democratization and insiders' insights on how the nation could be incorporated into the modern world system. -Choice, May 2001, Vol 38, No 09."