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Ooh, Sweep of History…

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In an article about China assuming its place at the table of great powers comes this passage:

In the past several weeks China Central Television has broadcast a 12-part series describing the reasons nine nations rose to become great powers. The series was based on research by a team of elite Chinese historians, who also briefed the ruling Politburo about their findings.

I haven’t the faintest about the academic credentials of the historians they’ve tracked down for this, but I would certainly be interested in knowing more. For every relatively inoffensive and policy irrelevant historian like Dave or Erik Loomis, there’s an “historian” like VD Hanson or Bernard Lewis. I’ve argued that one of the reasons that the rhetoric of “will” and resolve is so worthless is that Iran, China, and Russia all have their own Bill Kristols; I would suspect that China also has its share of VD Hansons.

On a related question, has anyone read Ben Barber’s Truth of Power? I would suspect that several books could be written concentrating just on the differences between the conversations of Richard Rorty and Bill Clinton on the one hand and Bernard Lewis and George Bush on the other.

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