East Asia Workshop: Politics, Economy and Society

April 15, 2018
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4/17, Ching-Fang Hsu & Sida Liu, “Ecologies of Globalization: China’s Shadow on the Legal Professions in Hong Kong and Taiwan”

East Asia Workshop: Politics, Economy and Society presents

 

Ecologies of Globalization:

China’s Shadow on the Legal Professions in Hong Kong and Taiwan”

 

Ching-Fang Hsu

Ph.D. Candidate in Political Science

University of Toronto

Sida Liu

Assistant Professor of Sociology

University of Toronto

 

4:30-6:00.m., Tuesday, April 17th, 2018

Pick Lounge, 5828 South University Ave.

*Food will be provided*

 

Abstract

China’s rapid rise as a regional and global power in the early twenty-first century brought with it rapid change to the legal profession domestically and abroad. This project investigates how lawyers in Taiwan and Hong Kong respond and adapt to China’s rising economic and political influence in East Asia. Economically, whereas law offices in Hong Kong have benefitted greatly from the vast amount of capital inflow from the mainland, law firms in Taiwan have suffered from the relocation of foreign capital to China and the restrictions on inbound Chinese investment in recent years. However, economic interests have induced limited transformation in political values: lawyers in both societies have been active participants in the resistance against the political influence from Beijing, continuing a prevalent tradition of political activism in the profession while a series of collective action intensified in the 2010s. Based on ongoing fieldwork in Hong Kong and Taiwan, we use the case of the legal profession to examine China’s global economic expansion and the extent to which economic power enables political leverage in adjacent societies in the age of globalization.

About the Presenters

Ching-Fang Hsu

Ching-Fang Hsu is a doctorate candidate in political science at the University of Toronto. She received her LL.B from National Taiwan University, LL.M from UC Berkeley, and M.A. from the University of Chicago. Trained as a lawyer and social scientist, she works in the interdisciplinary area between political science and law, focusing on the politics of judicial institutions and legal actors in various power settings. Ching-Fang’s dissertation project investigates the internal politics between legal professions in Singapore, Hong Kong and Taiwan, and the impact on the rule of law development. She has conducted field research in Asia as a visiting fellow at the Centre of Chinese Law at the University of Hong Kong, and a visiting researcher at the Centre for Asian Legal Studies at National University of Singapore. Her work has been published on policy forums in Taiwan, Hong Kong and the U.S., including the Initium Media, The Reporter, and the Ketagalan media.

 

Sida Liu

Professor Sida Liu received his LL.B. degree from Peking University Law School and his Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Chicago. He joined the Department of Sociology at the University of Toronto in 2016 after teaching sociology and law at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He is also a Faculty Fellow at the American Bar Foundation and a Member of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton. Professor Liu’s research interests include the sociology of law, organizations and professions, criminal justice, globalization, and social theory. He has conducted extensive empirical research on China’s legal reform and legal profession, including the globalization of corporate law firms, the political mobilization of criminal defense lawyers, the feminization of judges, and the career mobility of law practitioners. He also writes on sociolegal theory and general social theory, particularly theories of social space and social process following the tradition of Georg Simmel and the Chicago School of sociology. Professor Liu is the author of three books in Chinese and English, most recently, Criminal Defense in China: The Politics of Lawyers at Work (with Terence C. Halliday, Cambridge University Press, 2016). He has also published many articles in leading law and social science journals, including the American Journal of Sociology, Sociological Theory, Law & Society Review, Law & Social Inquiry, etc.

*To learn more about the workshop, please visit our workshop website: http://cas.uchicago.edu/workshops/eastasia/

*Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/UChicagoEAW/

*Subscribe or unsubscribe to the workshop mailing-list at: https://lists.uchicago.edu/web/info/east-asia

*Questions and concerns can be addressed to the student coordinator Haitong Xu (xuhaitong@uchciago.edu) and Yang Xiang (xiangalan@uchicago.edu)

 

Faculty sponsors:

Xi Song (Sociology), xisong@uchicago.edu

Dali Yang (Political Science), daliyang@uchicago.edu

Dingxin Zhao (Sociology), dzhao@uchicago.edu

 

The East Asia Workshop is sponsored by the Council on Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences. Persons with disabilities who believe they may need assistance please contact the student coordinator in advance.

 

April 1, 2018
by xuhaitong
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East Asia Workshop: Spring 2018 Workshop Schedule

EAST ASIA WORKSHOP: POLITICS, ECONOMY & SOCIETY

Spring 2018 Workshop Schedule

 

April 3

“Ethnic Politics in China: Integration and Its Discontents”

Yan Sun

Professor of Political Science

The City University of New York

 

April 17

“Ecologies of Globalization: China’s Shadow on the Legal Professions in Hong Kong and Taiwan”

Sida Liu

Assistant Professor of Sociology

University of Toronto

 

April 24

“历史遗留群体:普通人的社会转折”

Yingfang Chen 陈映芳

Professor of Sociology

Shanghai Jiaotong University

 

May 1

“Life Course, Hope and Economic Ethos of the Baby Boomer Generation in the Chinese Rustbelt”

Wen Xie

PhD Candidate, Sociology

University of Chicago

 

May 15

“Market Transition, Industrialization, and Social Mobility Trends in Post-Revolution China”

Xiang Zhou

Assistant Professor of Government

Harvard University

 

May 29

“Ivy League Targeted: Globalization and New Elite Formation as its Consequence in South Korea”

Hong Jin Jo

PhD Student, Sociology

University of Chicago

 

Unless otherwise stated, the East Asia Workshop meets on Every Other Tuesday 4:00-5:30pm at Pick Lounge, 5828 South University Avenue. This workshop features interdisciplinary scholarship addressing topics relating to social, political, economic as well as cultural matters and issues in East Asia. Our presenters come from various disciplines such as sociology, political science, economics, anthropology, history, etc. The goal of this workshop is to foster communication and collaboration among students and scholars whose interest lies in East Asia at the University of Chicago and in the wider East Asian Studies community.

 

* Abstract or description of each presentation will be posted on our website: http://cas.uchicago.edu/workshops/eastasia

* Questions and comments can be addressed to the student coordinators Haitong Xu: xuhaitong@uchicago.edu and Yang Xiang: xiangalan@uchicago.edu

* Subscribe or unsubscribe to our workshop mailing-list at: https://lists.uchicago.edu/web/info/east-asia

 

Faculty Sponsors:

Xi Song (Sociology), xisong@uchicago.edu

Dali Yang (Political Science), daliyang@uchicago.edu

Dingxin Zhao (Sociology), dzhao@uchicago.edu

 

The East Asia Workshop is sponsored by the Council on Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences. Persons with disabilities who believe they may need assistance please contact the student coordinator in advance.

February 26, 2018
by xuhaitong
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East Asia Workshop: 2/27, Jongyoon Baik, “Rights Claims in Authoritarian Courts: Administrative Litigations in China”

East Asia Workshop: Politics, Economy and Society presents

 

Rights Claims in Authoritarian Courts: Administrative Litigations in China”

 

Jongyoon Baik

PhD Student, Political Science

University of Chicago

 

4:30-6:00p.m., Tuesday, February 27th, 2018

Pick Lounge, 5828 South University Ave.

*Food will be provided*

 

Abstract

The existing studies found that the administrative litigations in China are limited because of possible political interference, the court’s lack of law-making power, and the narrowly-defined jurisdiction.  However, there is only a limited understanding of the specific types of cases that usually stay out of the court’s reach due to such limitation. Based on the literatures on the authoritarian legal system and Chinese politics, this paper hypothesizes that the cases that meet the purpose of the establishment of the legal system in China would be within the court’s reach, whereas the cases that can threaten the stability would less likely to be so. The empirical analysis of 2,200 administrative litigation cases in China finds mixed results. Although the hypothesis largely works, the study finds both sensitive and non-sensitive cases can be diverted outside the court when a plaintiff claims its rights that are not specified in the law. With these findings, this paper contributes to both the literatures on the administrative litigation in China and the authoritarian legal system in general. In addition, the data analysis portion of the study not only provides systematical analysis on the empirics that can be useful for future research on China’s administrative lawsuits, but also suggests a new type of approach to understand the court results by categorizing results into within versus outside the court’s reach.

*To learn more about the workshop, please visit our workshop website: http://cas.uchicago.edu/workshops/eastasia/

*Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/UChicagoEAW/

*Subscribe or unsubscribe to the workshop mailing-list at: https://lists.uchicago.edu/web/info/east-asia

*Questions and concerns can be addressed to the student coordinator Haitong Xu (xuhaitong@uchciago.edu) and Yang Xiang (xiangalan@uchicago.edu)

 

Faculty sponsors:

Xi Song (Sociology), xisong@uchicago.edu

Dali Yang (Political Science), daliyang@uchicago.edu

Dingxin Zhao (Sociology), dzhao@uchicago.edu

 

The East Asia Workshop is sponsored by the Council on Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences. Persons with disabilities who believe they may need assistance please contact the student coordinator in advance.

February 19, 2018
by xuhaitong
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2/20, Tiffany Barron, “Transnational Linkages and Grassroots Civil Society in China”

East Asia Workshop: Politics, Economy and Society presents

 

Transnational Linkages and Grassroots Civil Society in China”

 

Tiffany Barron

Committee on International Relations, Master Student

University of Chicago

 

4:30-6:00p.m., Tuesday, February 20th, 2018

Pick Lounge, 5828 South University Ave.

*Food will be provided*

 

Abstract

How does foreign support of Chinese NGOs affect domestic civil society in China? Previous scholarly work suggests that in favoring grants to large elite organizations, foreign funding plays an overall status quo function in Chinese civil society. Instead, this paper argues that international NGOs play a role in fostering the development of civil society networks within China. Such networks enable the spread of information and aid the ability of grassroots NGOs to survive authoritarian pressure, ultimately aiding their ability to influence policy. This paper examines two cases, Yunnan province and Guangxi province, tracing the development of the civil society sector in both provinces, and the effect of support by international, particularly U.S. based, NGOs. In so doing, this paper shows that a difference in local regulatory environments is not a compelling explanation for variation in the level of grassroots growth among Chinese provinces. While regulatory environment is a conditioning variable, strong civil society networks can bolster grassroots organizations and help them overcome less tolerable regulatory environments. This thesis helps bridge the gap between discussions of internal and external affairs in the scholarly international relations and comparative politics literatures. In examining the domestic consequences of international funding, it also contributes to discussions of the conflation of internal and external security apparent in China’s most recent national security law and its new regulations on international NGOs.

*To learn more about the workshop, please visit our workshop website: http://cas.uchicago.edu/workshops/eastasia/

*Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/UChicagoEAW/

*Subscribe or unsubscribe to the workshop mailing-list at: https://lists.uchicago.edu/web/info/east-asia

*Questions and concerns can be addressed to the student coordinator Haitong Xu (xuhaitong@uchciago.edu) and Yang Xiang (xiangalan@uchicago.edu)

 

Faculty sponsors:

Xi Song (Sociology), xisong@uchicago.edu

Dali Yang (Political Science), daliyang@uchicago.edu

Dingxin Zhao (Sociology), dzhao@uchicago.edu

 

The East Asia Workshop is sponsored by the Council on Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences. Persons with disabilities who believe they may need assistance please contact the student coordinator in advance.

February 4, 2018
by xuhaitong
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East Asia Workshop: 2/6, Robert Gulotty, “Regulatory Protection and the Geography of Trade: Evidence from Chinese Customs Data”

East Asia Workshop: Politics, Economy and Society presents

 

Regulatory Protection and the Geography of Trade: Evidence from Chinese Customs Data”

 

Robert Gulotty

Assistant Professor of Political Science

University of Chicago

 

4:30-6:00p.m., Tuesday, February 6th, 2018

Pick Lounge, 5828 South University Ave.

*Food will be provided*

 

Abstract

To comply with the demands of increasingly regulated markets, firms today must label, package or even rework products to meet the high standards of the destination market.  These technical barriers to trade (TBT) can raise prices and perhaps quality, but firms may also respond by moving out of the market entirely or rerouting their trade through third countries. In the former case, top firms enjoy monopolistic rents.  In the latter case, firms seeking to meet a standard in a country may shift transit trade toward countries with similar regulatory levels as the destination market.   The consequences could be dire for smaller exporters and developing markets that have enjoyed at least some of the rents associated with transit trade. To study these effects, we examine the effects of regulatory protection on the flow of China’s exports between 2000-2007, drawing on a unique dataset that covers the universe of over 130 million customs transactions reported by Chinese firms at the level of the shipment, including price, quantity, and the country of transit prior to arrival at the final market. During this period, China’s exports quadrupled and its trading partners adopted hundreds of regulatory barriers to trade. Joining the customs data with the catalogue of regulatory barriers collected by the World Trade Organization, we examine the consequences of these regulatory barriers for the margins of trade, both across firms and across transit countries, and, for the first time, map the geography of trade for the largest exporter in a world of regulated markets.

About the Speaker

Robert Gulotty is an assistant professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Chicago. His first book project is Governing Trade Beyond Tariffs: The politics of multinational production and its implications for international cooperation. He is also engaged in research on the origins of the international trade regime and the effects of domestic institutions on foreign economic policymaking. This research includes a book project, Opening of the American market: rules, norms and coalitions with Judith Goldstein. Gulotty’s work appears in International Organization, The Oxford Handbook of Historical Institutionalism, and The World Trade Report. He has also completed a postdoctoral fellowship with the Stanford Center for International Development and the Department of Political Science.

*To learn more about the workshop, please visit our workshop website: http://cas.uchicago.edu/workshops/eastasia/

*Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/UChicagoEAW/

*Subscribe or unsubscribe to the workshop mailing-list at: https://lists.uchicago.edu/web/info/east-asia

*Questions and concerns can be addressed to the student coordinator Haitong Xu (xuhaitong@uchciago.edu) and Yang Xiang (xiangalan@uchicago.edu)

 

Faculty sponsors:

Xi Song (Sociology), xisong@uchicago.edu

Dali Yang (Political Science), daliyang@uchicago.edu

Dingxin Zhao (Sociology), dzhao@uchicago.edu

 

The East Asia Workshop is sponsored by the Council on Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences. Persons with disabilities who believe they may need assistance please contact the student coordinator in advance.

January 19, 2018
by xuhaitong
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East Asia Workshop: 1/23, Xiaoxing Jin, “The Origin of the Evolutionary Misunderstanding: The Origin of Species in China”

East Asia Workshop: Politics, Economy and Society presents

 

The Origin of the Evolutionary Misunderstanding: The Origin of Species in China”

 

Xiaoxing Jin

History PhD Student

University of Notre Dame

 

4:30-6:00p.m., Tuesday, January 23rd, 2018

Pick Lounge, 5828 South University Ave.

*Food will be provided*

 

Abstract

Darwinian ideas were developed, transformed, and even distorted when they were transmitted to the alien intellectual background of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century China. In China, the earliest references to Darwin appeared in the 1870s through the writings of Western missionaries who provided the Chinese with the earliest information on evolutionary doctrines, with Christian beliefs encoded into their texts. Meanwhile, Chinese ambassadors, literati, and overseas students contributed to the dissemination of evolutionary ideas with modest effect. The “evolutionary sensation” in China was, instead, generated by the Chinese Spencerian Yan Fu’s (1854-1921) paraphrased translation and reformulation of Huxley’s 1893 Romanes lecture. It was from this source that “Darwin” became well known in China—although it was Darwin’s name, rather than his ideas, that entered Chinese literati’s households. The Origin of Species itself began to receive attention only at the turn of the twentieth century. The translator, Ma Junwu (1881-1940), incorporated non-Darwinian doctrines, particularly Lamarckian and Spencerian principles, into his edition of the Chinese Origin. This partly reflected the importance of the pre-existing Chinese intellectual background. In this paper, I will elucidate Ma Junwu’s culturally-conditioned reinterpretation of the Origin, and situate his transformation of Darwin’s principal concepts—variation, adaptation, the struggle for existence, artificial selection and Natural Selection—in China’s broad historical context of the first two decades of the 20th century.

*To learn more about the workshop, please visit our workshop website: http://cas.uchicago.edu/workshops/eastasia/

*Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/UChicagoEAW/

*Subscribe or unsubscribe to the workshop mailing-list at: https://lists.uchicago.edu/web/info/east-asia

*Questions and concerns can be addressed to the student coordinator Haitong Xu (xuhaitong@uchciago.edu) and Yang Xiang (xiangalan@uchicago.edu)

 

Faculty sponsors:

Xi Song (Sociology), xisong@uchicago.edu

Dali Yang (Political Science), daliyang@uchicago.edu

Dingxin Zhao (Sociology), dzhao@uchicago.edu

 

The East Asia Workshop is sponsored by the Council on Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences. Persons with disabilities who believe they may need assistance please contact the student coordinator in advance.

 

 

January 7, 2018
by xuhaitong
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East Asia Workshop: 1/9, Dali Yang, “China’s Illiberal Regulatory State in Comparative Perspective”

East Asia Workshop: Politics, Economy and Society presents

 

China’s Illiberal Regulatory State in Comparative Perspective”

 

Dali Yang

Professor of Political Science

University of Chicago

 

4:30-6:00p.m., Tuesday, January 9th, 2018

Pick Lounge, 5828 South University Ave.

*Light refreshments will be provided*

 

Abstract

This study reviews the development of Chinese regulation against the history of the development of the regulatory state in the West. Section One discusses the rise of the regulatory state in western democracies in an age of concern about state expansion. It notes that, generally speaking, the regulatory state in a liberal democratic setting has become accepted as enabling liberal democracies to combine democratic legitimacy with the independence and professionalism of unelected regulatory bodies. Section Two offers a quick overview of the establishment and proliferation of regulatory institutions in China in the context of continued single Party rule and strong state dominance. Section Three delineates the politics of changes to the regulatory regime from the perspective of political risk and points to dynamics that are animating regulatory state building with Chinese characteristics, with special reference to environmental regulation. Section Four concludes.

About the Speaker

Dali L. Yang is the William Claude Reavis Professor in the Department of Political Science and the College and Senior Advisor to the President and the Provost on Global Initiatives at the University of Chicago. Between 2010 and June 2016, he served as the founding Faculty Director of the University of Chicago Center in Beijing, a university-wide initiative to promote collaboration and exchange between UChicago scholars and students and their Chinese counterparts. He is also a non-resident Senior Fellow at the Chicago Council on Global Affairs.

Professor Yang’s research is focused on the politics of China’s development and governance. His current projects include studies of social regulation, environmental governance, social and political trust, and state-society relations. He also continues to examine the political economy of the Great Leap Famine (1959-1961), the worst in human history. Among his books are Remaking the Chinese Leviathan:  Market Transition and the Politics of Governance in China (Stanford University Press, 2004); Calamity and Reform in China: State, Rural Society and Institutional Change since the Great Leap Famine (Stanford University Press, 1996); and Beyond Beijing: Liberalization and the Regions in China (Routledge, 1997).  He is also editor or co-editor of several other volumes, most recently The Global Recession and China’s Political Economy (Palgrave, 2012). A contributor to The United States and the Rise of China and India, by the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, his recent articles have appeared in Comparative Political Studies, International Political Science Review, Journal of Contemporary China, and Political Studies.

*To learn more about the workshop, please visit our workshop website: http://cas.uchicago.edu/workshops/eastasia/

*Subscribe or unsubscribe to the workshop mailing-list at: https://lists.uchicago.edu/web/info/east-asia

*Questions and concerns can be addressed to the student coordinator Haitong Xu (xuhaitong@uchciago.edu) and Yang Xiang (xiangalan@uchicago.edu)

 

Faculty sponsors:

Xi Song (Sociology), xisong@uchicago.edu

Dali Yang (Political Science), daliyang@uchicago.edu

Dingxin Zhao (Sociology), dzhao@uchicago.edu

 

The East Asia Workshop is sponsored by the Council on Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences. Persons with disabilities who believe they may need assistance please contact the student coordinator in advance.

 

 

January 6, 2018
by xuhaitong
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East Asia Workshop: Winter 2018 Workshop Schedule

EAST ASIA WORKSHOP: POLITICS, ECONOMY & SOCIETY

Winter 2018 Workshop Schedule

 

January 9

“China’s Illiberal Regulatory State in Comparative Perspective”

Dali Yang

Professor of Political Science

University of Chicago

 

January 23

“The Origin of the Evolutionary Misunderstanding: The Origin of Species in China”

Xiaoxing Jin

PhD Student, History

University of Notre Dame

 

February 6

“Regulatory Protection and the Geography of Trade: Evidence from Chinese Customs Data”

Robert Gulotty

Assistant Professor of Political Science

University of Chicago

 

February  20

“Transnational Linkages and Grassroots Civil Society in China”

Tiffany Barron

Committee on International Relations, Master Student

University of Chicago

 

February  27

“The Boundary of Rights Claims in Authoritarian Courts: Examination of Administrative Litigation Cases in China 2002-2017”

Jongyoon Baik

PhD Student, Political Science

University of Chicago

 

March 6

“Embodying Medical Integration: Becoming Expert in Uncertain Times”

Miao Jenny Hua

PhD Candidate, Anthropology

University of Chicago

 

 

Unless otherwise stated, the East Asia Workshop meets on Every Other Tuesday 4:30-6pm at Pick Lounge, 5828 South University Avenue. This workshop features interdisciplinary scholarship addressing topics relating to social, political, economic as well as cultural matters and issues in East Asia. Our presenters come from various disciplines such as sociology, political science, economics, anthropology, history, etc. The goal of this workshop is to foster communication and collaboration among students and scholars whose interest lies in East Asia at the University of Chicago and in the wider East Asian Studies community.

 

* Abstract or description of each presentation will be posted on our website: http://cas.uchicago.edu/workshops/eastasia

* Questions and comments can be addressed to the student coordinators Haitong Xu: xuhaitong@uchicago.edu and Yang Xiang: xiangalan@uchicago.edu

* Subscribe or unsubscribe to our workshop mailing-list at: https://lists.uchicago.edu/web/info/east-asia

 

Faculty Sponsors:

Xi Song (Sociology), xisong@uchicago.edu

Dali Yang (Political Science), daliyang@uchicago.edu

Dingxin Zhao (Sociology), dzhao@uchicago.edu

 

The East Asia Workshop is sponsored by the Council on Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences. Persons with disabilities who believe they may need assistance please contact the student coordinator in advance.

November 13, 2017
by xuhaitong
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East Asia Workshop: 11/14 Haichao Wu, “Born-Global: Why Small Firms Love International Trade”

East Asia Workshop: Politics, Economy and Society presents

 

“Born-Global: Why Small Firms Love International Trade”

 

Haichao Wu

MAPSS Student

University of Chicago

 

4:30-6:00p.m., Tuesday, November 14th, 2017

Pick Lounge, 5828 South University Ave.

*Light refreshments will be provided*

 

Abstract

International business is often considered a game for large multinational corporations (MNCs); in general, we expect that small businesses will be unproductive, focus on the domestic market, and oppose the trade liberalization measures that MNCs find so attractive. New survey data challenges this conventional wisdom by demonstrating that out of 552 Chinese firms interviewed, the smaller companies actually support international trade as strongly as their larger and foreign counterparts. This paper argues that China’s position on the global technology ladder and its domestic economic institutions have encouraged small firms to welcome trade liberalization with its attendant increase in technology transfer and export dependence on the part of these firms. A comparative case study of structured interviews with 36 small Chinese firms confirms the hypothesis. Finally, this paper assesses the robustness of my theory by examining four alternative explanations for this unexpected support of international trade: economic prosperity, trade policy-making processes, the degree of higher education attained by firm managers, and the “liberal” constraints imposed by international organizations.

*To learn more about the workshop, please visit our workshop website: http://cas.uchicago.edu/workshops/eastasia/

*Subscribe or unsubscribe to the workshop mailing-list at: https://lists.uchicago.edu/web/info/east-asia

*Questions and concerns can be addressed to the student coordinator Haitong Xu (xuhaitong@uchciago.edu) and Yang Xiang (xiangalan@uchicago.edu)

 

Faculty sponsors:

Xi Song (Sociology), xisong@uchicago.edu

Dali Yang (Political Science), daliyang@uchicago.edu

Dingxin Zhao (Sociology), dzhao@uchicago.edu

 

The East Asia Workshop is sponsored by the Council on Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences. Persons with disabilities who believe they may need assistance please contact the student coordinator in advance.

October 30, 2017
by xuhaitong
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East Asia Workshop: 10/31, Wenyan Deng, “Threats from Within Assessing the Diversionary Escalation Theory”

East Asia Workshop: Politics, Economy and Society presents

 

“Threats from Within Assessing the Diversionary Escalation Theory”

 

Wenyan Deng

Data Manager

University of Chicago

 

4:30-6:00p.m., Tuesday, October 31st, 2017

Pick Lounge, 5828 South University Ave.

*Light refreshments will be provided*

 

Abstract

The diversionary war theory suggests that leaders respond to domestic unrest by escalating tensions abroad. Past research suggests that territorial issues provide the easiest diversionary channel. Along these lines, China analysts such as Howard French have speculated that the country’s more escalatory maritime territorial behaviors in recent years are responses to its slowing economic growth. However, other scholars, such as M. Taylor Fravel, have contended that, historically, the PRC undertakes territorial escalation in response to changes in its relative claim power, rather than domestic crises. This article makes two contributions to this debate between a state-level and a domestic level theory of escalation. First, it analyzes the PRC’s maritime territorial and homeland disputes since 2002 and argues that, in the past two decades, the PRC has been more likely to use force when other claimants have become less aggressive. This observation in the PRC’s maritime territorial behavior contradicts Fravel’s state level, claim power-based escalation theory, which seems to apply more accurately to the PRC’s Cold War-era frontier disputes. Second, this paper offers a corrective mechanism to the traditional diversionary war theory, which posits that internal unrest and external aggression have a linear positive relationship. Instead, I argue that, at low levels of internal unrest, authoritarian states are also likely to increase territorial aggressiveness, because autocratic governments facing low internal unrest and enjoying strong control over their society are confident and likely to pursue external territorial goals more aggressively. Consistent with this mechanism’s predictions, the paper shows that, in both periods with very low and very high internal unrest, the PRC government has been more likely to escalate territorial tensions.

*To learn more about the workshop, please visit our workshop website: http://cas.uchicago.edu/workshops/eastasia/

*Subscribe or unsubscribe to the workshop mailing-list at: https://lists.uchicago.edu/web/info/east-asia

*Questions and concerns can be addressed to the student coordinator Haitong Xu (xuhaitong@uchciago.edu) and Yang Xiang (xiangalan@uchicago.edu)

 

Faculty sponsors:

Xi Song (Sociology), xisong@uchicago.edu

Dali Yang (Political Science), daliyang@uchicago.edu

Dingxin Zhao (Sociology), dzhao@uchicago.edu

 

The East Asia Workshop is sponsored by the Council on Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences. Persons with disabilities who believe they may need assistance please contact the student coordinator in advance.

 

 

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