University of Nottingham Ningbo China
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China and the World: A Tale of Two Centuries of Historical Encounters

24 April 2013 (15:45-17:00)

The School of Contemporary Chinese Studies (SCCS) is very pleased to invite you to the following seminar given by Prof Yongjin Zhang, University of Bristol, UK.

Venue: AB209

Date:  24th of April, 2013 (Wednesday)

Time: 3:45 – 4:30 presentation

  4:30 – 5:00 Q&A


The rise of China is now generally accepted as one of the great human dramas of the twenty-first century. The global power shift accompanied by the rise of China has profound implications for the emerging regional and global order. My presentation foregrounds some key historical moments in China’s often tumultuous and always contentious relationship with the world (the West writ large) in the nineteenth and the twentieth centuries. Using a number of historical images, I look at China’s changing relationship with the world at the turn of three centuries, Imperial China in 1800, the nationalistic China in 1900, and the globalist China in 2001. I will also discuss how conflict and war shape and characterize these historical encounters. This historical knowledge, I argue, is important for us in contextualizing the rise of China, and in understanding China’s rising place in an increasingly globalized world.


Yongjin ZHANG  is Chair professor of International Politics in the School of Sociology, Politics and International Studies at the University of Bristol, where he was Chair Professor of East Asian Studies, Centre for East Asian Studies, University of Bristol from 2008 to 2009.  Before he joined Bristol, he was Professor (Personal Chair) of China and International Studies, University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand.  His works include Before the Rise of the West: International Orders in the Early Modern World, (co-edited with Shogo Suzuki and Joel Quirk), Routledge, London and New York (2013) and ‘The Global Diffusion of the English School of International Relations’, in Navari, Cornelia and Green, Dan (eds.) The English School of International Relations Theory: A Study Guide, Hoboken, NJ: Wiley-Blackwell (2013); ‘Towards a Regional International Society: Making Sense of Asian Regionalism(s)’, Global Politics (2013); ‘Culture, Knowledge and Diplomacy in Contemporary China-EU Relations: Reflections on the Legacies of Matteo Ricci’, Asia-Europe Journal (2013); ‘The Eagle Eyes the Dragon in Space: A Critique‘, Space Policy (2013); ‘The “China Anxiety” and the Puzzle of China Rising’, Development and Change (2013)