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China Report

China Report; 56 (2)

An Introductory Note for the Articles

From historical exclusion, China became initially and partly incorporated into the world in the 1950s and 1960s while ignored by most of the countries. A quantitative breakthrough in the 1970s has led to a universal recognition, still formal and restricted throughout the 1980s and 1990s, making China a great power by the early twenty-first century. This paper by Yitzhak Shichor provides a framework for China’s gradual global integration. China’s rise and gradual integration in the international community are interpreted here based on Marx’s theory of ownership and Professor Charles Taylor’s theory of recognition. Both regard status as a property which is an outcome not just of a unilateral individual claim but of multilateral social relations. Adapted to the international society, these theories underscore China’s global integration.   

Based on the data from the 13-month field visit spread over two trips (September 2016 to December 2016 and September 2017 to July 2018), this study by Justin Joseph highlights how securitisation efforts from the central government interact with environmental non-governmental organisation (ENGO) activism and advocacy in China, producing diverse outcomes across temporal and spatial dimensions. The trajectory of state-society relations in the context of environmental governance depends on (a) the ability of party-state to control ‘new media’ activism and manage ENGO advocacy to ‘maintain stability/rule by law’ and (b) ability of the assemblage of media activism and ENGO advocacy, along with other agents, to support the transition from ‘rule by law’ to ‘rule of law’. The overall findings are discussed in the context of the ‘Copenhagen School’ framework in International Relations Theory to examine the process of securitisation in the environmental sector in China.

Faced with the explosion of information about many other countries in the world on social media, the audience of a certain country may form different emotions, judgements and thoughts of such information, which are worthy of scrutiny. In this article, Lan He, Ming Yin, Yujia Shi’s aim is to examine Western users’ opinions towards China-related posts on Reddit.com through sentiment analysis of the comments following such posts. Using a statistical method, they collected and analysed the comments of 384 posts on China on Reddit.com, which were distributed in 36 subreddits. As the finding shows, the number of neutral comments exceeds the number of either positive comments or negative comments on China-related posts on Reddit.com. The results indicate that although most of the opinions on Reddit.com about China are neutral or irrelevant, they are largely neglected by the users or viewers who very much prefer negative or positive comments.

This article by Nurettin Akçay and Tang Qingye takes an empirical approach to Turkey’s perceptions of China’s proposal to build a Community of a Shared Future for Mankind and begin the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) by examining data from Turkey’s mainstream media, think-tanks, academic and business fields, and social media sources. The findings demonstrate that, despite Turkey’s geological position, the degree of concern for a Community of a Shared Future and the BRI is not high enough. There are positive and negative evaluations. The positive evaluation is mainly related to the importance of BRI with regard to Turkey’s economy, business, infrastructure construction and the national rejuvenation, while the negative side is about China’s aim, cultural security and the disputes between the two countries. To deal with such cognitive differences, China needs to boost the publicity of the initiative and form a better understanding of Turkish domestic needs. China and Turkey should also seek to strengthen people-to-people ties.

This article by Saber Salem looks at China’s rising political, economic and cultural influence in Fiji and the Pacific region as a whole. The Sino–Fiji cooperation deepened at multiple levels after the Fijian military assumed power through a coup d’état and removed the civilian government from power in late 2006. This ‘undemocratic behaviour’ infuriated the two regional powers—Australia and New Zealand who then applied sanctions on Fiji, particularly the military brass, and encouraged their counterparts as well as multilateral aid organisations to ‘punish’ Fiji’s military ‘regime’. The military government, in order to derail the impact of sanctions from its traditional donors, adopted the ‘Look North Policy’, which was opening cooperation with China and attracting Chinese investment in Fiji. Today, China is the second-largest donor to the region and the largest financier to Fiji. Fiji has become the ace in this game as it is the regional hub of the Pacific Island states. Bearing the current high level of aid competition between traditional and emerging donors in mind, it is too early to judge whether Chinese aid will cause more harm to Fiji than the benefit or vice versa. This vagueness and secrecy that is associated with Chinese aid been a cause for concern, especially among traditional donors.


Ranking alongside the top bicycling nations of the world, Japan today boasts of a deeply engrained cycling culture. While the technological prowess of Japan’s bicycle industry is well known, there exists no scholarly study investigating the socio-cultural impact of cycling in Japan, specifically its role in the emancipation of women. How the modern women of Japan scaled barriers to mobility riding their way to modernity in an oppressive male-dominated society is not yet known. The objective of this paper by Nidhi Maini is to examine women cyclists in Japan in the context of modernisation. On the one hand, viewing bicycles helps examine the Japanese economy from the perspective of ordinary women as active consumers (as against their passive image) whose demand for bicycles was certainly an essential ingredient for the growth of bicycle industry. On the other hand, it serves to question the predominant view of consumption stagnation in interwar Japan. Most importantly, as countries around the world continue to make laudable efforts to encourage women cyclists, a leaf can be drawn by policymakers from the history of forgotten cycling heroines of Japan to accelerate women’s socio-economic empowerment.


 

I Articles


 

  • Recognition: China’s Long March to Global Integration
    Yitzhak Shichor
    Abstract
  • Exploring the Agency-Structure Dynamics in State-Society Relations in Contemporary China: The Case of Securitisation of the Environmental Sector
    Justin Joseph
    Abstract

  • Love, Hate Thy Neighbour? Or Just Don’t Care Much about Them: A Sentiment Analysis of China-related Posts and Comments on Reddit.Com
    Lan He, Ming Yin, Yujia Shi
    Abstract

     
  • Turkey’s Perceptions of China’s Belt and Road Initiative (2013–2017): Media and Think-Tanks Discourse Analysis
    Nurettin Akçay and Tang Qingye
    Abstract

     
  • Chinese Foreign Aid to Fiji: Threat or Opportunity
    Saber Salem
    Abstract

     
  • Dressing Up and On the Go: Women Cyclists in Modern Japan
    Nidhi Maini
    Abstract

 

II Book Reviews


  • Book Review: Zorawar Daulet Singh, Power and Diplomacy – India’s Foreign Policies During the Cold War
    T. C. A. Raghavan
    Abstract

     
  • Book Review: Leo T. S. Ching, Anti – Japan: The Politics of Sentiment in Postcolonial East Asia
    오준 Joon Oh
    Abstract

     
  • Book Review: Jude Blanchette, China’s New Red Guards: The Return of Radicalism and the Rebirth of Mao Zedong
    Manoj Kewalramani
    Abstract

     
  • Book Review: Jawad Syed and Yung-Hsiang Ying, China’s Belt and Road Initiative in the Global Context, Volume I: A Business and Management Perspective and Jawad Syed  and Yung-Hsiang Ying, China’s Belt and Road Initiative in the Global Context, Volume II: The China Pakistan Economic Corridor and it Implications for Business
    Saleh Shahriar
    Abstract

     
  • Book Review: Rama V. Baru and Madhurima Nundy, Commercialisation of Medical Care in China: Changing Landscapes
    Indira Chakravarti
    Abstract


 

 

 

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