Over at the Duck of Minerva, Robert E Kelly has a two part blog post discussing the applicability of Jack Snyder’s “Myths of Empire” theory to China.
I urge you to read the full threads because it’s a very interesting take on international relations theory and eminently readable, but a short summary goes like this:
1. Snyder’s theory posits that late development states will turn to Imperialism because the state-led industries that fuel this development creates political incentives for aggression. (This has to do with the creation of oligopolies and is something of a variation of regulatory capture)
2. Kelly examines how this model applies to China. Kelly concludes that overall, China seems to fit some of the patterns Snyder suggests in his theory, but with key caveats.
3. These caveats are: CCP seems to be focusing more on internal nationalism. The current oligopoly running China doesn’t seem too interested in Imperialism. (For the time being.)
Give the whole thing a read. Once you have, let me know if there’s interest in a similar style of blogging here with regard to general international relations and historical books.