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The Sino-Japanese battle for soft power: Pitfalls and promises
Swedish National Defence College, Department of Security, Strategy and Leadership (ISSL), Political Science Section.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-7495-055X
2015 (English)In: Global Affairs, ISSN 2334-0460, E-ISSN 2334-0479, Vol. 1, no 2, 129-137 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Beijing and Tokyo are currently involved in a zero-sum battle for soft power. Both governments are actively trying to shape how third party actors understand contested matters in their bilateral relationship. The dispute over the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands is the most obvious flashpoint in this ongoing struggle for hearts and minds. A soft power battle might seem like an innocent endeavour, but by entrenching enmity and legitimizing armed conflict, it might actually translate into one where hard power takes centre stage. Indeed, that the dissemination and entrenchment of affective identity narrative make violence seem normal, natural, realistic or perhaps even inevitable is the greatest danger associated with the ongoing Sino-Japanese dispute. However, if both parties were to agree to let the International Court of Justice settle their discord, the islands dispute could provide them with a chance to boost their respective soft power and lay the groundwork for a more peaceful order in East Asia. The article thus argues that the Sino-Japanese soft power battle contains both well-known pitfalls and a less well-known promise.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 1, no 2, 129-137 p.
Keyword [en]
China, Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands, identity, Japan, narrative, soft power
National Category
Political Science
Research subject
Statsvetenskap med inriktning mot strategi och säkerhetspolitik
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:fhs:diva-5753DOI: 10.1080/23340460.2015.990798OAI: oai:DiVA.org:fhs-5753DiVA: diva2:893082
Available from: 2016-01-12 Created: 2016-01-12 Last updated: 2016-01-12Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
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