STRATEGY: LEGACIES OF THE QING CONQUESTS
PETER C. PERDUE
In this chapter I discuss several perspectives on the grand strategy of the Chinese empire, drawing from my ongoing work on the expansion of the Qing empire into Central Eurasia in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. My central question is the relationship between cultural definitions of threats and decisions about the use of military force. Two very different theoretical traditions address this question, one derived from security studies and the other from cultural anthropology. Both traditions are now represented by outstanding works of scholarship applying their insights to late imperial China (the Ming and Qing dynasties, ca. AD 1400–1911). After a brief summary and critique of these studies, I compare the strategic thinking of the Ming and Qing rulers.
Security studies is a branch of political science primarily concerned with contemporary international relations, but a number of scholars have turned to historical work, concentrating particularly on the origins of World War I.1 Alastair lain Johnston is one of the few political scientists working in this tradition to analyze East Asian history. His recent book, Cultural realism: Strategic culture and grand strategy in Chinese history examines the influence on the Chinese use of military force of a coherent, temporally persistent strategic culture, or 'ranked grand strategic preferences derived from central paradigmatic assumptions about the nature of conflict and the enemy, and collectively shared by decision makers'.2____________________
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Publication information: Book title: Warfare in Chinese History. Contributors: Hans J. Van Der Ven - Editor. Publisher: Brill. Place of publication: Boston. Publication year: 2000. Page number: 252.
This material is protected by copyright and, with the exception of fair use, may not be further copied, distributed or transmitted in any form or by any means.