The latest update of the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography has just been published. It contains biographies of 222 men and women who shaped modern British history and who died in the year 2012. Martin Jacques has written the biography for Eric Hobsbawm, one of the twentieth century’s greatest historians. By kind permission of the Oxford DNB and OUP you can read the biography here.
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To launch the new edition, the Oxford DNB produced the above video of a discussion about Eric Hobsbawm between Martin Jacques and Professor David Cannadine, Editor of the ODNB.
You can also listen to a 30 minute podcast of the discussion here:
It is difficult to underestimate the significance of the recent transformation in relations between the UK and China. There are many examples in recent years of countries moving towards a closer relationship with China: the distinctiveness – and significance – of the British case lies in the fact that the UK has regarded itself – and been seen as – America’s closest ally ever since the Second World War.
Who would have guessed just three years ago that the David Cameron government would be the author of the boldest change in British foreign policy since the second world war? That is exactly what is now unfolding.
The process began this year when the British government announced it would join a Chinese initiative to help fund Asia’s enormous infrastructural needs. The UK became the first non-Asian country to join the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), after which more than 30 other countries joined, including Germany and France.
This hugely successful TED talk in London has now had over 2 million views. Martin Jacques asks: How do we in the West make sense of China and its phenomenal rise?
The west’s bears have always well outnumbered the bulls when it comes to the Chinese economy. A new problem is all too often seen as an intimation of impending crisis, a hard landing, consequent social instability, and perhaps the eventual collapse of the regime. Dream on.
The bears, it goes without saying, have a dreadful record. After 35 years of extraordinary economic growth, China is still growing at 7% annually. True, that is lower than before, but still at a rate that dwarfs anything in the west.
One of the great weaknesses of so much western economic commentary is that it fails to look much beyond the next quarter’s, or even month’s, results. In contrast the Chinese understand where they have come from, where they are and where they need to go. Nor are they complacent: the Chinese leadership readily admits it faces quite new economic challenges.
The recent slowdown has called previous narratives about China’s rise into question for some. How should we view this economic slowdown? What role will the US play? Global Times (GT) London-based correspondent Sun Wei interviewed Martin Jacques (Jacques), a senior fellow at the Department of Politics and International Studies, Cambridge University, and a visiting professor at Tsinghua University, Beijing, about these questions.
John Harris’ ‘Long Read’ piece for The Guardian (29 September 2015) includes an interview with Martin Jacques and an assessment of his editorship of Marxism Today from 1977 – 1991.
In May 1988, a group of around 20 writers and academics spent a weekend at Wortley Hall, a country house north of Sheffield, loudly debating British politics and the state of the world. All drawn from the political left, by that point they were long used to defeat, chiefly at the hands of Margaret Thatcher. Now, they were set on figuring out not just how to reverse the political tide, but something much more ambitious: in essence, how to leave the 20th century.Over the previous decade, some of these people had shone light on why Britain had moved so far to the right, and why the left had become so weak. But as one of them later put it, they now wanted to focus on “how society was changing, what globalisation was about – where things were moving in a much, much deeper sense”. The conversations were not always easy; there were raised voices, and sometimes awkward silences. Everything was taped, and voluminous notes were taken. A couple of months on, one of the organisers wrote that proceedings had been “part coherent, part incoherent, exciting and frustrating in just about equal measure”.
27/10/14 — Furama RiverFront Hotel, Singapore
Business China, in conjunction with Singapore Press Holdings, organised a wonderful event on 27th November in Singapore in their Eminent Speakers Series. Over a thousand people packed into the Grand Ballroom of Singapore’s Furama RiverFront Hotel to hear Martin Jacques talk on Why China Will Be a Very Different Kind of Great Power — and now for the first time, a complete video of the event is available to view.
The talk was followed by a question and answer session during which the moderator, Professor Tan Khee Giap, asked the audience whether or not they broadly agreed with Jacques’s argument. Did they vote for or against? See the short video below.
Click here for the extensive media coverage of the event (in Chinese)
On 18th September 2012, Martin Jacques gave a talk at the University of Melbourne as part of a public lecture series organised by Asialink, questioning ‘Australia’s Role in the World’. This highly popular YouTube video of his lecture has over 200,000 views.
Martin Jacques presents a highly successful series of programmes on how best to understand the unique characteristics and apparent mysteries of contemporary China, its development and its possible future. In this new series, he sets out the building blocks for making sense of China today.
The Implications of China's rise for the Global Order - 23/09/2015
Lecture to Senior Civil Servants
‘What the UK’s pivot towards China tells us about the future.’
Private event, organised by the Cabinet Office and HM Treasury
The Churchill Room, 100 Parliament Street, Westminster, UK
Committee of 100 - Speaker Series Event
‘The U.K. sees China as a friend, why don’t we?’
Martin Jacques and Susan Shirk, as part of the C-100 Speakers Forum Series
Stanford University, California
SAP, 3410 Hillview Avenue, Palo Alto 94303
Talk at the National Liberal Club
‘How China is Changing the World’
with Vince Cable
Whitehall Place, London, UK
Talk at Charterhouse School
Talk to The Cambridge Universities Labour Club
Boao Forum for Asia
Credit Suisse Global Megatrends Conference
‘In Focus Session: China vs India, moderated by CNBC’
Fairmont Singapore, 80 Bras Basah Road, Singapore,
Symposium: China today, from the UK's perspective
As part of the celebrations for the tenth anniversary of the founding of Xian Jiaotong Liverpool University, Suzhou
University of Liverpool, UK