1st Edition

China’s Big Power Ambition under Xi Jinping Narratives and Driving Forces

Edited By Suisheng Zhao Copyright 2022
    288 Pages
    by Routledge

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    Instead of emphasizing China as a developing country, Chinese President Xi Jinping has identified China as a big power and accentuated China’s big power status. This book explores the narratives and driving forces behind China's big power ambition. Three narratives rooted in Sino-centralism are examined. One is China’s demands for the reform of global governance to reflect the values and interests of China as a rising power. Another is China’s Belt and Road Initiative to construct a nascent China-centred world order. The third is the China model and self-image promotion in the developing countries.

    There are many forces that have driven or constrained China’s big power ambition. This collection focuses on two sets of forces. One is China’s domestic politics and economic incentives and disincentives. The other is China’s geo-political and geo-economic interests. These forces have both motivated and constrained China’s big power ambition.

    The chapters in this book were originally published in the Journal of Contemporary China.

    Part 1: The Narratives 
    1. Rhetoric and Reality of China’s Global Leadership in the Context of COVID-19: Implications to the US-led World Order and Liberal Globalization 
    Suisheng Zhao 
    2. China’s Strategic Narratives in Global Governance Reform under Xi Jinping 
    Yi Edward Yang 
    3. China’s Belt and Road Initiative as Nascent World Order Structure and Concept? Between Sino-Centering and Sino-Deflecting 
    Ray Silvius 
    4. Co-evolutionary Pragmatism: Re-examine ‘China Model’ and Its Impact on Developing Countries 
    Tang Xiaoyang 
    5. From ‘Peaceful Rise’ to Peacebuilder? How Evolving Chinese Discourses and Self-perceptions Impact Its Growing Influence in Conflict Societies 
    Pascal Abb 
    6. Business is Business: How Does Trade Relationship Fail to Boost Image of China? 
    Narisong Huhe and Min Tang 
    Part 2: Domestic Political Economy 
    7. Party-state Realism: A Framework for Understanding China’s Approach to Foreign Policy 
    Steve Tsang 
    8. The Rationale and Effects of China’s Belt and Road Initiative: Reducing Vulnerabilities in Domestic Political Economy 
    Hongyi Lai 
    9. Beaconism and the Trumpian Metamorphosis of Chinese Liberal Intellectuals 
    Yao Lin 
    10. Why Do Chinese Democrats Tend to Be More Nationalistic? Explaining Popular Nationalism in Urban China 
    Yang Zhong and Wonjae Hwang 
    Part 3: Geopolitics and Geo-Economics 
    11. China’s Military Base in Djibouti: A Microcosm of China’s Growing Competition with the United States and New Bipolarity 
    Jean-Pierre Cabestan 
    12. China’s Response to Threats to Its Overseas Economic Interests: Softening Non-Interference and Cultivating Hegemony 
    Yizheng Zou and Lee Jones 
    13. Constructing a U.S.-China Rivalry in the Indo-Pacific and Beyond 
    Andrew Scobell 
    14. Chinese Multinational Enterprises Operating in Western Economies: Huawei in the US and the UK 
    Xin Liu 
    15. The Tenuous Co-Production of China’s Belt and Road Initiative in Brazil and Latin America 
    Gustavo de L.T. Oliveira and Margaret Myers 
    16. A Role Model for Africa or Exceptional Engagement? Assessing China’s South Sudan Experience 
    Malte Brosig 


    Suisheng Zhao is Professor and Director of the Center for China-US Cooperation at Josef Korbel School of International Studies, University of Denver and Founding Editor of the Journal of Contemporary China.