A Relational Theory of World Politics

A Relational Theory of World Politics

by Yaqing Qin


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Drawing on Chinese cultural and philosophical traditions, this book offers a ground breaking reinterpretation of world politics from Yaqing Qin, one of China's leading scholars of international relations. Qin has pioneered the study of constructivism in China and developed a variant of this approach, arguing that culture defined in terms of background knowledge nurtures social theory and enables theoretical innovation. Building upon this argument, this book presents the concept of 'relationality', shifting the focus from individual actors to the relations amongst actors. This ontology of relations examines the unfolding processes whereby relations create the identities of actors and provide motivations for their actions. Appealing to scholars of international relations theory, social theory and Chinese political thought, this exciting new concept will be of particular interest to those who are seeking to bridge Eastern and Western approaches for a truly global international relations project.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781316634257
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 04/05/2018
Pages: 412
Product dimensions: 5.94(w) x 8.98(h) x 0.87(d)

About the Author

Yaqing Qin is Professor of International Studies at China Foreign Affairs University and Executive Vice-President of the China National Association for International Studies. Previously, Qin was on the Resource Group for the High-Level Panel on Threats, Challenges and Change, organized by the then UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan. He has served on numerous national and international editorial boards, including Global Governance, East-West Center Policy Studies series and the Chinese Journal of International Politics. His academic interests include international relations theory and global governance, and he has written for numerous journals, including International Studies Review, Chinese Journal of International Politics, and International Relations of the Asia-Pacific.

Table of Contents

Part I. Culture and Social Theory: 1. Social theory and the multicultural world; 2. Theoretical hard core; 3. Culture and theoretical innovation; 4. Individualistic rationality and mainstream IR theory; Part II. Relation and Relationality: 5. A world of relations; 6. Meta-relationship and the zhongyong dialectics; 7. The logic of relationality; Part III. Power, Cooperation, and Governance: 8. Power and relation; 9. Cooperation in a relational world; 10. Governance: rule, rules, and relations.

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