This article examines how recent books by academics and public intellectuals are reshaping the discourse of the rise of China. While earlier trends argued that China was being socialized into the norms of international society, many texts now proclaim that due to its unique civilization, China will follow its own path to modernity. Such books thus look to the pastChinas imperial historyfor clues to not only Chinas future, but also the worlds future. This discourse, which could be called Sino-speak,presents an essentialized Chinese civilization that is culturally determined to rule Asia, if not the world. The article notes that nuanced readings of Chinas historical relations with its East Asian neighbors provide a critical entry into a more sophisticated analysis of popular declarations of Chinese exceptionalism.But it concludes that this critical analysis is largely overwhelmed by the wave of Sino-speak. 

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