Destined for War: Can America and China Escape Thucydides's Trap?

Destined for War: Can America and China Escape Thucydides's Trap?

by Graham Allison

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Overview

A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK OF THE YEAR | SHORT-LISTED FOR THE 2018 LIONEL GELBER PRIZE | NAMED A BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR BY: FINANCIAL TIMES * THE TIMES (LONDON) * AMAZON
 
“Allison is one of the keenest observers of international affairs around.”— JOE BIDEN, former vice president of the United States
 
China and the United States are heading toward a war neither wants. The reason is Thucydides’s Trap: when a rising power threatens to displace a ruling one, violence is the likeliest result. Over the past five hundred years, these conditions have occurred sixteen times; war broke out in twelve. Today, as an unstoppable China approaches an immovable America, and both Xi Jinping and Donald Trump promise to make their countries “great again,” the seventeenth case looks grim. A trade conflict, cyberattack, Korean crisis, or accident at sea could easily spark a major war.
      In Destined for War, eminent Harvard scholar Graham Allison masterfully blends history and current events to explain the timeless machinery of Thucydides’s Trap—and to explore the painful steps that might prevent disaster today.
 
“[A] must-read book in both Washington and Beijing.”— NIALL FERGUSON, BOSTON GLOBE
 
“[Allison is] a first-class academic with the instincts of a first-rate politician.”— BLOOMBERG NEWS
 
“[Full of] wide-ranging, erudite case studies that span human history . . . [A] fine book.”— NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781328915382
Publisher: HMH Books
Publication date: 08/07/2018
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 400
Sales rank: 93,284
Product dimensions: 5.31(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.99(d)

About the Author

GRAHAM ALLISON is director of Harvard University’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs and a best-selling author. Founding dean of the Kennedy School of Government, he has advised the secretaries of defense under Reagan, Clinton, and Obama.
 

Table of Contents

Preface vii

Introduction xi

Part 1 The Rise Of China

1 "The Biggest Player in the History of the World" 3

Part 2 Lessons From History

2 Athens vs. Sparta 27

3 Five Hundred Years 41

4 Britain vs. Germany 55

Part 3 A Gathering Storm

5 Imagine China Were Just Like Us 89

6 What Xi's China Wants 107

7 Clash of Civilizations 133

8 From Here to War 154

Part 4 Why War Is Not Inevitable

9 Twelve Clues for Peace 187

10 Where Do We Go from Here? 214

Conclusion 232

Acknowledgments 241

Appendix 1 Thucydides's Trap Case File 244

Appendix 2 Seven Straw Men 287

Notes 289

Index 349

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