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China's Trapped Transition
     

China's Trapped Transition

by Minxin PEI
 

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In a book sure to provoke debate, Minxin Pei examines the sustainability of the Chinese Communist Party's reform strategy--pursuing pro-market economic policies under one-party rule. Combining powerful insights with empirical research, China's Trapped Transitio offers a provocative assessment of China's future as a great power.

Overview

In a book sure to provoke debate, Minxin Pei examines the sustainability of the Chinese Communist Party's reform strategy--pursuing pro-market economic policies under one-party rule. Combining powerful insights with empirical research, China's Trapped Transitio offers a provocative assessment of China's future as a great power.

Editorial Reviews

Financial Times
Pei does not have much time for the optimistic assumption that democracy in China is just around the corner...For Pei, there is little chance of dethroning the Communist party behemoth in spite of the heroic efforts of the dissidents and democracy campaigners.
— Chris Patten
Commentary
As Pei sees it, big trouble looms [for China]. Continued progress toward a more modern economy will require the establishment of a true rule of law, which in turn will require 'institutional curbs' on governmental action. These two limitations on power are incompatible with the party's insistence on dominating society. So long as the current political framework remains in place, then, China is effectively, and perhaps fatally, trapped in its state of transition...[China's Trapped Transition presents a] comprehensive and, I believe, compelling understanding of present-day China.
— Gordon G. Chang
China Journal
Pei's most significant contribution lies in his lucid exposition of the causal links between the structural logic of China's "illiberal adaptation" and its manifest socio-economic and political consequences...He has arguably--like Elvin before him--raised the level of debate and altered the terms of engagement.
— Richard Baum
China Economic Review
[An] acute and insightful examination of China's ongoing transition.
— Chris Hunter

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780674041981
Publisher:
Harvard University Press
Publication date:
06/30/2009
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
308
File size:
657 KB

What People are Saying About This

Not only does Minxin Pei make the case that the Chinese reforms are partial and self-limiting, but he also calls into question the hopeful view that rapid growth will ultimately generate political reform. His important book has implications for current debates about the United States-China relationship, but will also force a rethinking of the broader comparative literature on the developmental state.
Joseph Fewsmith
In this superb work, Pei asks penetrating questions about the course of China's development. He offers a very effective critique of the gradualist approach to reform, explaining that the problems China faces are not incidental to but an integral part of that approach. Powerfully argued, this is a major contribution sure to stir debate.
Joseph Fewsmith, author of China since Tiananmen
Elizabeth J. Perry
Minxin Pei is unquestionably one of this country's best informed and most insightful analysts of contemporary Chinese politics. This well-written, provocative book­-a sobering picture of a China beset by severe social problems yet resistant to the political reforms needed to resolve them-­directly challenges much of the conventional wisdom about the rise of China. It is certain to be welcomed by scholars, policymakers, and general readers alike.
Elizabeth J. Perry, author of Patrolling the Revolution
Philippe C. Schmitter
Pei's notion of a 'trapped transition' will prove valuable­-and not just for its application to China. It serves to challenge the deterministic and evolutionary assumptions behind much of the literature on democratization.
Philippe C. Schmitter, European University Institute
Stephan Haggard
Not only does Minxin Pei make the case that the Chinese reforms are partial and self-limiting, but he also calls into question the hopeful view that rapid growth will ultimately generate political reform. His important book has implications for current debates about the United States-China relationship, but will also force a rethinking of the broader comparative literature on the developmental state. --(Stephan Haggard, co-author of The Political Economy of Democratic Transitions)

Meet the Author

Minxin Pei is Tom and Margot Pritzker ’72 Professor of Government and Roberts Fellow, and the director of the Keck Center for International and Strategic Studies at Claremont McKenna College.

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