All roads lead to Sinology

By Barthélémy Courmont(chinadaily.com.cn) Updated: 2016-07-12

All roads lead to Sinology

Barthélémy Courmont attends the 2016 Young Sinologists Program in Beijing.[Photo provided to Chinaculture.org]

Some questions appear particularly relevant, however, for current and further research:

- Can China be perceived as a soft power?

- What can be identified as indicators of the success of a soft power strategy?

- Is there any "resistance" to China’s soft power, and how can it be characterized?

- Is China’s soft power a strategy that will gradually lead to another interpretation of China as a great power?

Although answering these questions will remain rather difficult, they appear to me as key challenges to understand not only the future directions China is likely to take, but also the future of international relations at large. And it is my belief that this understanding starts with a deeper knowledge of Chinese culture and history, and in that sense, it looks like many different roads ultimately lead to Sinology as a key to better understand China.

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