SOAS University of London

Centre for International Studies and Diplomacy

Building Global International Relations: China, India and Asia’s Troubled Destiny from Bandung to the BRICS



Amitav Acharya

Date: 8 March 2018Time: 7:00 PM

Finishes: 8 March 2018Time: 8:30 PM

Venue: Russell Square: College Buildings Room: DLT

Type of Event: Talk

Abstract: The seminar, drawing upon the author’s recent book: "East of India, South of China" (Oxford 2017) examines the ebbs and flows of the geopolitical fortunes of India and China-the two Asian giants-in Southeast Asia. After examining the competing historic conceptions of Asian identity, Amitav Acharya charts the key events and turning points in the triangular relationship between India, China, and Southeast Asia, especially since the encounter between Jawaharlal Nehru and Zhou Enlai at the Asia-Africa Conference in Bandung in 1955. Looking back and looking ahead, Acharya makes the unconventional and challenging argument that Sino-Indian encounters in Southeast Asia are as crucial to understanding Asia’s destiny as the China-Japan-US triangle in East Asia. He concludes with observations on how the rise of China and India challenges the West and offer new possibilities of global order and governance. Arguing that neither India, nor China nor Japan can lead Asia on its own terms, Acharya contends that Asia’s ability avoid hegemony or cataclysm depends on its stronger powers learning the lessons of leadership from its weaker ones: Southeast Asia and ASEAN.

Speaker Bio: Amitav Acharya is Distinguished Professor of International Relations and the UNESCO Chair in Transnational Challenges and Governance at the School of International Service, American University, Washington, DC. During 2016-18 he holds the inaugural Boeing Company Chair in International Relations at the Schwarzman Scholars Program, Tsinghua University, Beijing. He is the author or editor of 30 books and over 200 journal or magazine articles. Among his major works on Asia are The Making of Southeast Asia (Cornell and ISEAS, 2013); Constructing a Security Community in Southeast Asia: ASEAN and the Problems of Regional Order, 3rd edition (Routledge 2014), Whose Ideas Matter: Agency and Power in Asian Regionalism (Cornell and ISEAS, 2009), and East of India, South of China: Sino-Indian Encounters in Southeast Asia (Oxford 2017). He was elected to the Christensen Fellowship at Oxford University and is the first non-Western scholar to be elected as the President of the International Studies Association, the most respected and influential global network of scholars in International Relations.

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