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End of an Era: How China's Authoritarian Revival is Undermining Its Rise

Carl Minzner (Professor of Law, Fordham University)



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Oxford University Press Inc
15 March 2018
History; Religion & politics; Political science & theory; Comparative politics; Marxism & Communism; Political economy
China's reform era is ending. Core factors that characterised it - political stability, ideological openness, and rapid economic growth - are unravelling. Since the 1990s, Beijing's leaders have firmly rejected any fundamental reform of their authoritarian one-party political system, even as a decades-long boom has reshaped China's economy and society. On the surface, their efforts have been a success. Political turmoil has toppled former Communist East bloc regimes, internal unrest overtaken Middle East nations, and populist movements risen to challenge established Western democracies. China, in contrast, has appeared a relative haven of stability and growth. But as Carl Minzner shows, a closer look at China's reform era reveals a different truth. Over the past three decades, a frozen political system has fuelled both the rise of entrenched interests within the Communist Party itself, and the systematic underdevelopment of institutions of governance among state and society at large. Economic cleavages have widened. Social unrest has worsened. Ideological polarisation has deepened. Now, to address these looming problems, China's leaders are progressively cannibalising institutional norms and practices that have formed the bedrock of the regime's stability in the reform era. Technocratic rule is giving way to black-box purges; collective governance sliding back towards single-man rule. The post-1978 era of reform and opening up is ending. China is closing down. Uncertainty hangs in the air. End of an Era explains how China arrived at this dangerous turning point, and outlines the potential outcomes that could result.
By:   Carl Minzner (Professor of Law Fordham University)
Imprint:   Oxford University Press Inc
Country of Publication:   United States
Dimensions:   Height: 242mm,  Width: 163mm,  Spine: 26mm
Weight:   562g
ISBN:   9780190672089
ISBN 10:   0190672080
Pages:   272
Publication Date:   15 March 2018
Audience:   Professional and scholarly ,  Undergraduate
Format:   Hardback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Carl Minzner is Professor of Law at Fordham Law School. He is an expert in Chinese law and governance, and has written extensively on these topics in both academic journals and the popular press.

Reviews for End of an Era: How China's Authoritarian Revival is Undermining Its Rise

Carl Minzner takes the measure of 'China's rise' in a highly readable, yet penetrating, analysis that accurately gauges its weaknesses as well as strengths. - Jerome A. Cohen, Professor of Law and Faculty Director, U.S.-Asia Law Institute, New York University School of Law, and Adjunct Senior Fellow, Council on Foreign Relations This book is a must-read, conversation changing book for anyone interested in China. Meticulously researched and written in a highly accessible style, End of an Era argues that China's reform era is ending. The book details how over the last decade changes in China's society, economy, politics and ideology have coalesced in a massive, yet unnoticed, transition, ending the reform era and endangering the country's further development. The book presents a shocking message that has repercussions for virtually anyone on the globe whose lives have become intertwined with the Chinese political economy. - Benjamin Van Rooij, John S. & Marilyn Long Chair Professor, University of California, Irvine In learned, provocative, yet engaging ways, Carl Minzner draws from his decades of China-watching expertise to explain the deeply unsettled and unsettling trajectory of contemporary China. Reflecting on the underlying social, economic, political and spiritual angst in China today, and the Party-state's tightening grip in response, the book not only convincingly explains the End of an Era, but foresees a darkening future with serious implications for China and the world. - Bates Gill, Professor of Asia-Pacific Security Studies, Macquarie University A concise, authoritative, and impartial analysis of the challenges China faces as it tries to balance a vibrant, dynamic, ever evolving economy and society, with a static, centralised political system. This study asks fundamental, hard questions about whether this perpetual squaring of the circle can actually ever be achieved. Its conclusions are sobering and thought provoking. - Kerry Brown, Professor of Chinese Studies and Director of the Lau China Institute, King's College, London Captivating and essential reading for all China watchers. - Library Journal

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