China’s Pathway towards Maritime Civilisation is reviewed for JCA by Xiaolong Zou of the School of International & Public Affairs, Jilin University, Changchun City, China.
Published in Chinese as 郑永年论中国: 中国通往海洋文明之路, the book is authored by Zheng Yongnian and published by the Eastern Publishing Corp. in 2018.
The book’s six chapters cover a range of interweaved topics: China’s maritime geo-politics, soft power, ZouChina’s rise, South China Sea issues, China’s diplomacy towards neighbouring countries, the “Indo-Pacific” concept and the rise of the Belt and Road Initiative. Underpinning all of this is a concern for Sino-USA relations and China’s regional rise.
Zou concludes that in terms geo-politics:
Zheng’s book is one of just a few works in Chinese that offer insightful and objective analysis of China’s geo-political situation, especially as he moves beyond the “political correctness” upheld by most Chinese scholarship. This is a though-provoking book offering insight and suggestions for China’s foreign policy makers and other stakeholders. It deserves to be widely read, considered and critiqued.