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Asymmetric Structure of Mutual Distrust and the “Locked” Sino-Japanese Relations

CHEN, SHI (2016) Asymmetric Structure of Mutual Distrust and the “Locked” Sino-Japanese Relations. Doctoral thesis, Durham University.

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The thesis presents a way of interpreting problems and disputes between China and Japan through identifying distrust in Sino-Japanese relations. It is abnormal that the two former rivals still could not move forward from the legacies of history while the status quo of the rise of China brings more problems. One explanation would be that the continuous mutual distrust with an asymmetric structure on different core concerns of strategic and moral issues leads to the locked Sino-Japanese relations.

The thesis argues that both of the two countries distrust each other while the priori concerns are different. Japan concentrates on the strategic issues and China currently pays more attention on the moral issues. The different priorities lead to a lack of motivation of the two countries to make compromises to solve the problems from the other’s perspective. Hence, the thesis will try to verify the existence of mutual distrust and the asymmetric structure and examine the impacts of distrust on interstate relations. The analysis on the governmental discourse and existing policies and activities of the two countries will be the main method. The qualitative analysis on the essence of discourse and the quantitative verification of the reliability will be used in the case studies for the empirical materials collected. Besides, to collect information from the academic and public levels, the thesis will use the secondary data from the existing public opinion polls and conduct a small scale interview on both Chinese and Japanese scholars.

In general, the results show that the asymmetric mutual distrust greatly contributes to the current Sino-Japanese contradictions. The two countries might keep suffering from it in a long term before the potential recommendations on trust-building and distrust-eliminating processes could effectively work.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Faculty and Department:Faculty of Social Sciences and Health > Government and International Affairs, School of
Thesis Date:2016
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:17 Oct 2016 10:13

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