Knowing China: A Twenty-First Century Guide
By: Frank N. Pieke (author)Paperback
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Contemporary China appears both deceptively familiar and inexplicably different. China is a cauldron of forms of entrepreneurship, social organization, ways of life and governance that are at once new and unique, recognizably Chinese and generically modern. In analyzing and interpreting these developments, Frank N. Pieke adopts a China-centric perspective to move beyond western preoccupations, desires, or fears. Each chapter starts with a key question about China, showing that such questions and assumptions are often based on a misunderstanding or misconstruction of what China is today. Pieke explores twenty-first-century China as a unique kind of neo-socialist society, combining features of state socialism, neoliberal governance, capitalism and rapid globalization. Understanding this society not only helps us to know China better, but takes us beyond the old dichotomies of West versus East, developed versus developing, tradition versus modernity, democracy versus dictatorship, and capitalism versus socialism.
Frank Pieke studied cultural anthropology at the University of Amsterdam and the University of California, Berkeley. After lectureships at Universiteit Leiden and the University of Oxford, he was appointed Chair Professor in Modern China Studies at Universiteit Leiden in 2010. Pieke's current research revolves around foreign migration to China and the changing role of the Chinese Communist Party. His books include The Good Communist: Elite Training and State Building in Today's China (2009) and Transnational Chinese: Fujianese Migrants in Europe (2004).
1. Introduction: knowing China; 2. Why the Communist Party will not fall from power; 3. China's economy will continue to grow, but not forever; 4. Freedom without universal human rights; 5. From empire to nation, or why Taiwan, Tibet and Xinjiang will not be independent; 6. Not just a Chinese century; 7. Conclusion: the Communist Party and China's future; References; Index.
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