Rethinking Middle Powers in the Asian Century: New Theories, New Cases, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Rethinking Middle Powers in the Asian Century

New Theories, New Cases, 1st Edition

Edited by Tanguy Struye de Swielande, Dorothée Vandamme, David Walton, Thomas Wilkins

Routledge

240 pages

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Description

The term "middle power" is conceptually fragile. Some scholars have even argued for abandoning it. This book argues that the concept needs to be analysed more profoundly and that new analytical tools need to be developed to better understand the phenomenon. The traditional approach, based on Western states, is insufficient and has become increasingly irrelevant in a transformed global environment. Instead of drawing from a single theory of international relations, the contributors have chosen to build upon a wide range of theories in a deliberate demonstration of analytic eclecticism. A pluralistic approach provides stronger explanations while remaining analytically and intellectually rigorous. Many of the theory contributions are reconsidering how the largely "Western" bases of such theorising need revising in light of the "emerging middle powers", many of which are in Asia.

Presenting a strong argument for studying middle powers, this book explores both the theory and empirical applications of the concept by rethinking the definition and characteristics of middle powers using a range of case studies. It examines changes in the study of middle powers over the last decade, proposing to look at the concept of middle powers in a coherent and inclusive manner. Finally, it aims to further the discussion on the evolution of the international system and provides sound conclusions about the theoretical usefulness and empirical evolution of middle powers today.

Table of Contents

List of figures and tables

Notes on contributors

Introduction

DAVID WALTON AND THOMAS S. WILKINS

PART I

Theoretical approaches

1 Middle powers: A comprehensive definition and typology

TANGUY STRUYE DE SWIELANDE

2 The historical determination of the middle power concept

GABRIELE ABBONDANZA

3 Defining middle powers through IR theory: Three images

THOMAS S. WILKINS

4 Interlocutors for peace? Bringing middle powers in from the theoretical cold

ALLAN PATIENCE AND CHIRAAG ROY

5 Middle powers in the agency-structure debate

FEDERICA DE PANTZ

6 Too big to fit? Locating "rising powers" regarding the middle power category

JOAN DEAS

7 Interrogating middle powers’ behaviour

CATHERINE JONES

8 Faith no more: Reflections on the distinction between traditional and emerging middle powers

EDUARD JORDAAN

9 Middle power assertiveness as a behavioural model in foreign policy

ANDRIY TYUSHKA

PART II

Case studies

10 Middle powers and power shifts: Australian foreign policy towards China and Japan

DAVID WALTON

11 Adjusting the middle to fit the frame: Canada in the changing global order

JEREMY PALTIEL AND KIM RICHARD NOSSAL

12 India: Breaking out of the middle power straitjacket?

EMILIAN KAVALSKI

13 The case of Pakistan: Middlepowermanship as a role

DOROTHÉE VANDAMME

14 The Singapore paradox: The "little red dot" as a "middle power"

LAM PENG ER

15 Meddling middle powers: Can diplomacy crack the North Korean conundrum?

VIRGINIE GRZELCZYK

16 Middle power hybridisation and China

JONATHAN H. PING

Conclusion

TANGUY STRUYE DE SWIELANDE AND DOROTHÉE VANDAMME

Afterword

ANDREW F. COOPER

Index

About the Editors

Tanguy Struye de Swielande is Professor of International Relations at the Université catholique de Louvain, Belgium.

Dorothée Vandamme is a Research Assistant at the Université catholique de Louvain, Belgium.

David Walton is Senior Lecturer in Asian Studies and International Relations at Western Sydney University, Australia.

Thomas Wilkins is Senior Lecturer in the Department of Government and International Relations at the University of Sydney, Australia.

About the Series

IR Theory and Practice in Asia

This series will publish philosophical, theoretical, methodological and empirical work by prominent scholars, as well as that of emerging scholars, concerned with IR theory and practice in the context of Asia. It will engage with a wide range of issues and questions ranging from meta-theoretical underpinnings of existing Western-oriented IR theories to ways of theorising Asian histories and cultures.

What are we looking for?

While we are open to any exciting ideas for edited, single or co-authored work, we are currently inviting book proposals which intend to address the following areas:

  • Global IR
  • Critical test and application of IR theory in Asian contexts
  • IR scholarship in Asia
  • Asian international politics
  • Critical pedagogy of international studies
  • Sociology of IR scholarship
  • Asian theory of international relations (Chinese IR; Japanese IR; Korean IR; and IR in ASEAN)
  • Multiple (or competing) discourses about non-Western IR theory
  • Asian histories of international relations
  • Theoretical pluralism and fragmentation in IR
  • Dialogues and engagement in a pluralist IR

More specifically, the questions the series is interested in include (but are not limited to) the following:

  • What are the implications of the rise of Asia, and especially China, for IR as a discipline?
  • Through what mechanisms has Western IR theory dominated the discipline?
  • Why has IR, as a discipline, developed the way it has?
  • What are the distinctive features and teaching practices in Asian IR communities?
  • To what extent is Western IR theory useful in comprehending Asian international politics?
  • Do developments in contemporary Asia require new theoretical and methodological innovations?
  • Is the development of an Asian theory of IR desirable? If so, how might it be achieved?
  • Will efforts to develop Asian IR theory or schools lead IR to becoming a fragmented field of study?

If you have an idea for a new book in IR Theory and Practice in Asia, please send a written proposal to the Series Editors:

Yong-Soo Eun, Editor-in-Chief, ysir@hanyang.ac.kr

Shaun Breslin, Editor, Shaun.Breslin@warwick.ac.uk

Kosuke Shimizu, Editor, shimizu@world.ryukoku.ac.jp

Ja Ian Chong, Editor, polcji@nus.edu.sg

 

Editorial Board Members:

Peter J. Katzenstein, Cornell University, USA

T.V. Paul, McGill University, Canada

Tim Dunne, University of Queensland, Australia

Colin Wight, University of Sydney, Australia

Shaun Breslin, University of Warwick, UK

Takashi Inoguchi, University of Niigata Prefecture, Japan

Timothy M. Shaw, University of Massachusetts Boston, USA

Ian Hall, Griffith University, Australia

Wookhee Shin, Seoul National University

Chris Hughes, University of Warwick, UK

Mark Beeson, University of Western Australia

Yongjin Zhang, Bristol University, UK

Cheng-Chwee Kuik, National University of Malaysia

Inanna Hamati-Ataya, University of Cambridge, UK

Ching Chang Chen, Ryukoku University, Japan

Emilian Kavalski, The University of Nottingham Ningbo China

Pinar Bilgin, Bilkent University, Turkey

Qin Yaqing, China Foreign Affairs University, China

Chanintira na Thalang, Thammasat University, Thailand

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOC008000
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Ethnic Studies / General
SOC053000
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Regional Studies