Whither East Asian Regionalism? China's Pragmatism and Community Building Rhetoric

Japanese Journal of Political Science 14 (4):543-566 (2013)
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Despite numerous published writings on China's regional role, the world still knows very little about Beijing's perception and strategy. This article seeks to make an intellectual contribution in understanding China's foreign policy and its efforts to participate in East Asian integration. This article argues that under the rhetoric of peaceful development and community building, China's foreign policy is pragmatic and changes with the tide of events in international relations. China's participation in regional integration serves as a good case for examining changes in Beijing's strategy. In the past two decades, China has moved from a reluctant participant of regional affairs to an active participant and potential future leader. China's adjusting role is a consequence of Beijing's pragmatism in policy and its growing economic confidence. Pragmatism has led China to and wait for the proper timing to step onto the world stage



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