The rise of China in the early twenty-first century has unsettled the geopolitical status quo and raised the prospect of a multipolar world order after three decades of unchecked US imperialist hegemony. While some socialists welcome this challenge as a boon for anti-imperialism, others insist (or fear) that the rising China intends to become an imperialist power rather than combat imperialism worldwide. Such disagreements are often underwritten by differing diagnoses of whether China is a socialist or capitalist state and differing assessments of China’s real impact on the world’s peoples, which give rise to a range of orientations from “Neither Washington Nor Beijing” to “Critical Support for Beijing.”
Our final module of our Imperialism Study Series presents various socialist perspectives on the questions of imperialism in China, Chinese imperialism abroad (if such a thing exists), and the US-China rivalry.
At play in the module’s readings are a complex set of factors: (1) the relationship between China and the Global North; (2) the relationship between China and the Global South; (3) the impact of China’s rise on the historically exploitative relationship between Global North and Global South. We can provide no easy answers, but there is undoubtedly much to learn and discuss.
This module was compiled by NTDSA as a supplement to the DSA-LA Imperialism Reader used for the first four modules of this study series, and it revolves around five readings, which you can access in the Google Doc “Module 5: Imperialism and China: Socialist Perspectives.” The readings are:
- “The US-China Rivalry Is About Capitalist Competition,” Ho-Fung Hung
- “China: Imperialism or Semi-Periphery?,” Minqi Li
- “Neither Washington Nor Beijing,” Ashely Smith and Kevin Lin
- “Neither Washington Nor Beijing?,” Carlos Martinez
- “Can the Chinese Diaspora Speak?,” The Qiao Collective
Were you unable to attend the first four sessions? No problem! You can review the content from Module 1: Is Imperialism the Highest Stage of Capitalism?, Module 2: America’s Ascent as an Imperial Power, Module 3: The National Question, and Module 4: Imperialism Today.
Interested in attending our Socialist Night School sessions? Check our calendar for upcoming session dates.
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