China’s Discomfort in an American World

China has reemerged as a great power in a world order created and dominated by the United States, and that order has had a profound effect on China’s development. China possesses three personalities. It acts as a civilizational empire, a nation-state, and a globally integrated economic power. The Chinese Communist Party struggles to manage these often-conflicting identities. A multitude of identities is not unique to China. The United States is both a classical nation-state and an “empire of liberty,” and the interaction between the three Chinas and the two Americas will shape the future of Asia.

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