Rethinking Sino-Japanese Alienation: History Problems and Historical Opportunities

ISBN : 9780198851394

Barry Buzan; Evelyn Goh
400 Pages
153 x 153 mm
Pub date
Jan 2020
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Bitterly contested memories of war, colonisation, and empire among Japan, China, and Korea have increasingly threatened regional order and security over the past three decades. In Sino-Japanese relations, identity, territory, and power pull together in a particularly lethal direction, generating dangerous tensions in both geopolitical and memory rivalries. Buzan and Goh explore a new approach to dealing with this history problem. First, they construct a more balanced and global view of China and Japan in modern world history. Second, building on this, they sketch out the possibilities for a 21st century great power bargain between them. Buzan puts Northeast Asia's history since 1840 into both a world historical and a systematic normative context, exposing the parochial nature of the China-Japan history debate in relation to what is a bigger shared story about their encounter with modernity and the West, within which their modern encounter with each other took place. Arguing that regional order will ultimately depend substantially on the relationship between these two East Asian great powers, Goh explores the conditions under which China and Japan have been able to reach strategic bargains in the course of their long historical relationship, and uses this to sketch out the main modes of agreement that might underpin a new contemporary great power bargain between them in a variety of future scenarios for the region. The frameworks adopted here consciously blend historical contextualisation, enduring concerns with wealth, power and interest, and the complex relationship between Northeast Asian states' evolving encounters with each other and with global international society.


Introduction to the Book
Part I - Historical Similarities and Historical Opportunities
1 China and Japan: Historical Parallels Versus a Narcissism of Small Differences
Part II - Constructing History Collectively for Northeast Asia Since 1840
2 Confronting the China-Japan History Problem in Northeast Asia
3 Evaluating Northeast Asian History Collectively
Part III - Negotiating a New Great Power Bargain: Contemporary Sino-Japanese Strategic Relations in Historical Context
4 Unpacking the Contemporary Strategic Problem in Northeast Asia
5 No Bargains: Understanding Contemporary Sino-Japanese Strategic Relations
6 Re-visiting the Historical Context of Sino-Japanese Strategic Relations, 1400-1900
7 Opportunities for a Great Power Bargain Between China and Japan
Conclusions to the Book

About the author: 

Barry Buzan is a Fellow of the British Academy, Emeritus Professor in the LSE Department of International Relations and a Senior Fellow at LSE IDEAS. He was formerly Montague Burton Professor in the Department of International Relations, LSE. Among his books are, with Richard Little, International Systems in World History (2000); with Ole Waever, Regions and Powers (2003); From International to World Society? (2004); with Lene Hansen, The Evolution of International Security Studies (2009); An Introduction to the English School of International Relations (2014); with George Lawson, The Global Transformation: History, Modernity and International Relations (2015); and with Laust Schouenborg, Global International Society: A New Framework for Analysis (2018). He has written more than a dozen article on China and Japan, including a trilogy of pieces in the Chinese Journal of International Politics exploring the possibilities for China's 'peaceful rise'. ; Evelyn Goh is the Shedden Professor of Strategic Policy Studies at The Australian National University, Australia, where she is also Director of Research in the Strategic and Defence Studies Centre. Her research focuses on security and international relations in the Asia-Pacific, U.S.-China diplomatic history and contemporary relations, and the economic-security nexus in China's strategic policy. Her publications include The Struggle for Order: Hegemony, Hierarchy and Transition in Post-Cold War East Asia (OUP, 2013, 2015); 'Great Powers and Hierarchical Order in Southeast Asia: Analyzing Regional Security Strategies', International Security 32:3 (Winter 2007/8): 113-57; Constructing the US Rapprochement with China, 1961-1974: From Red Menace to Tacit Ally (Cambridge University Press, 2004); and the edited volume Rising China's Influence in Developing Asia (OUP, 2016). She is co-editor of the Cambridge Studies in International Relations book series.

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