Challenges of Chinese Diplomacy at the Dawn of the Republican Era
In the paper the author assumes that modern Chinese diplomacy has faced double-edge dilemmas: from the constructivist perspective the dilemma of being self (Chineseness) among other nations, and secondly, from an institutional point of view, the dilemma of the efficient bureaucracy. As analyzed in the paper, both dilemmas were rotted in the post-Opium War collapse of the Qing dynasty. The situation in 19th century made the Chinese aware of not being the Middle Kingdom. China was forced to accept the Westphalian system, and follow the Western pattern of international relationship. The contact with other forced the new member of the state centered system to forge a new identity. Until then the Chinese failed to describe the World by differentiation between nation states, but rather by cultural supremacy. The second challenges was bureaucracy related. The Western powers forced the Chinese government to operate on the same level as themselves. As the outcome of clashes between the West and China, the Chinese established quasi Foreign Ministry (Zongli Yamen). To the point, as concluded in the paper, the clashes with the West shaped China principles of noninterference and nonalignment in foreign policy.