Provocative – When China Rules the World: The End of the Western World and the Birth of a New Global Order

This excellent book published in 2009 and updated in 2012 argues that a modernising and modernised China will retain her essential Chineseness. Jacques contends that the dominant Western view that with globalisation China will become increasingly Westernised in the full Western sense is misconceived. {p 12}.

Paradoxically, the broad anti-China stance taken by the Trump Administration in particular and US politicians. in general, have ” pushed” China to adopt policies that fulfill Jacques’ prediction!

This book begins with an analysis that China and Western Europe were on par economically by 1800. From 1800 onwards, China faced a severe shortage of arable land and forest {wood for fuel} to sustain a rising population. Europe, {in particular Britain was able to overcome this land constraint by discovering large quantities of coal and} by colonising the New World, Africa (for its slaves}, India and South East Asia for its produce. {p 32}.

There is a very perceptive chapter analysing Japan as modern but hardly western.

The materials in this book are not new to me and to readers who are well-read. The strength of this book is that Jacques has collated all relevant facts and sources to present a compelling case. His book reads well.

Only the future will tell whether the Middle Kingdom {as China is called in its own language} in years to come will still call the US mei guo/ the Beautiful Country {as the US is now called in Chinese}.

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