Based on his experience as a scholar and diplomat stationed in China, Jean-Luc Domenach consults a wealth of archival and contemporary materials to examine China's place in the world. A sympathetic yet critical observer, Domenach brings his intimate knowledge of the country to bear on a range of crucial issues, such as the growth (or deterioration) of China's economy, the government's ever-delayed democratization, the potential outcomes of a national political crisis, and the possible escalation of a revamped authoritarianism.
Domenach ultimately reads China's current progress as a set of easy accomplishments presaging a more difficult era of development. His finely nuanced analysis captures the difficult decisions now confronting China's elite, who are under tremendous pressure to support an economy based on innovation and consumption, establish a political system based on law and popular participation, rethink their national identity and spatial organization, and define a more positive approach to the world's problems. These leaders are also besieged by corruption among their ranks, an increasingly restless urban population, and a sharp decline in the country's demographic growth. Domenach taps into these anxieties and the attempt to alleviate them, revealing a China much less confident and secure than many would believe.
Now that the world's most populous country has ceased to be an abstraction... French books are suddenly among the most down-to-earth. The latest is Jean-Luc Domenach's excellent La Chine m'inquiète, written after his stay in the country from 2002 to 2007. Through a hailstorm of statistics, an outline of contemporary China appears.... Domenach has a sharp nose for Chinese paradoxes.Times Literary Supplement
informed, accessible, engaging...Highly recommended.
AcknowledgmentsIntroduction: The New "Chinese Moment"Book I. Measure for Measure1. The Regime's New Foundations2. In a New World3. The Magnitude and Weaknesses of GrowthBook II. The Acid Test4. Explanation5. The Acceleration of HistoryBook III. The Great Riddles of the Future6. Can China Be Governed?7. One People?8. Will China Finally Discover the World?9. What Does China Want?Conclusion: China's Great ChallengeAfterword: China Moves Toward a Consumer EconomyList of AbbreviationsNotesBibliographyIndex
Read the chapter, "Can China Be Governed?" (to view in full screen, click on icon in bottom right-hand corner)
A Choice Outstanding Academic Title, 2013