Martin Jacques’ work, When China Rules the World, is an important one. It argues that the global order is in the process of rapid and fundamental changes. China, as a new economic giant, will begin to be much more influential, particularly in East and Southeast Asia, but also globally. This will necessarily result in major changes in the international economic and political order [1].

From the above summary, When China Rules the World might be thought to be one of a series of such cautionary analyses of the “rise of China.” However, this work is very different. Jacques argues not that China is on the rise, but that it is re-attaining the dominant position it has usually enjoyed in the world economy. In making this argument, Jacques redefines many critical issues. For example, most Western analysis prefers to see the brief period of Western world domination as a natural result of cultural superiority. That is, the Judeo-Christian tradition produced a culture uniquely capable of rapid advances in science, exploration, and business, whereas non-Western countries like China were doomed to backwardness, unless, of course, they adopted Western institutions.

Read more >