Many see China as a rival superpower to the United States and imagine the country’s rise to be a threat to U.S. leadership in Asia and beyond. In his new book, "The China Challenge: Shaping the Choices of a Rising Power" (W.W. Norton 2015), Thomas J. Christensen argues against this zero-sum vision. Instead, he describes a new paradigm in which the real challenge lies in dissuading China from regional aggression while encouraging the country to contribute to the global order. Drawing on decades of scholarship and his experience as deputy assistant secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific affairs from 2006 to 2008, Christensen shows that although China is nowhere near powerful enough to be considered a global “peer competitor” of the United States, the country is already strong enough to destabilize East Asia and to influence economic and political affairs worldwide.
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