Foreign Policy Blogs

Dr. Pamela Crossley on U.S.-China relations


Hosted by Sarwar Kashmeri, the Foreign Policy Association’s Great Decisions podcast series will headline issues together with the leaders whose decisions today will mold the foreign policy of tomorrow. Each podcast will tackle a different Great Decisions topic in the 2014 series, a list of which can be found here. The Great Decisions podcasts can also be found on iTunes.

As China evolves into the world’s biggest economy, it has begun to question the motives and operations of rival global power, the United States. From the U.S. naval presence in the South China Sea to U.S. attempts to bolster other regional powers economically and militarily, China finds itself having to grapple with another Pacific power while at the same time trying to assert itself in the region.

The United States has shaped its China policy around a series of long-held beliefs, including that China has never truly bought into the idea of the nation-state. Our guest this week, Dr. Pamela Crossley, a professor of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies at Dartmouth College, injects a dose of historical realism to today’s U.S.-China relations.

Pamela Crossley is a specialist on the Qing empire, and also researches and writes on Central and Inner Asian history, global history, and the history of horsemanship in Eurasia before the modern period. The Faculty Project features her video series, “Modern China,”and her documentary on Asian horsemanship was featured in the Asian Arts Theatre festival, Gwangju, South Korea, in 2013.  She is the author of six books and co-author of two leading textbooks on global history. Her work has  been awarded the Joseph R. Levenson Prize of the Association for Asian Studies (for a book in any discipline addressing China before 1800), the Dartmouth Award for Outstanding Scholarly or Creative Achievement (now the Karen Wetterhahn Award) and a Guggenheim fellowship. Her books have been translated into Chinese, Japanese, Korean, French, Spanish and Polish. Shorter research works have appeared in The Cambridge History of ChinaThe Cambridge History of World Slavery, and The Cambridge History of Warfare, in scholarly journals including American Historical Review, Journal of Asian Studies and Annales; her commentary has appeared in popular publications including The London Review of BooksThe New Republic, New York Times Book Review, History Today, Royal Academy of Arts Magazine, The National Interest, Wall Street Journal, and the BBC.