Irredentism and Post-Socialist China´s Role in International Affairs
Tuesday, 12 October 2004 14:00-15:30
Much has been made of China´s two-decade-long post-Socialist economic transformation, its implications for political reform, and its role in China's emergence as an increasingly credible and proactive player in global and regional politics. Yet, just beneath the surfaces of this Chinese renaissance resides a host of conflicting challenges.
Not the least of these is a deeply imbedded, often uncompromising and sometimes bellicose reservoir of irredentism which, as in the special case of Taiwan, threatens to destroy the accomplishments of the past two decades and to embroil China and the world in conflict. What are the roots of this Chinese urge to irredentism? How do they relate to historical and contemporary Chinese geopolitical consciousness and concern? How does that urge to irredentism coincide with internal debate between "right" and "left" wings among the CCP leadership? And, what are the prospects for the containment of the irredentist challange inlight of China´s new-found role in world affairs? These are the main issues touched upon in the overall theme of this presentation, an exploration of the role that irredentism plays in the foreign and domestic politics of China.