Chinese Soft Power in Japan and South Korea
China’s soft power in Japan and South Korea has receded as it has moved from forging a regional community to insisting on regional leadership. In three stages observed for both bilateral relationships, it has allowed national identity gaps to widen. The chapter reviews a framework for analyzing such gaps and applies the framework comparatively to the two pairings over the three stages. The conclusion points to neglect of soft power in favor of other types of power and a Sinocentric approach that demands respect for China’s political and cultural preferences. As long as countries are oriented to the West, their friendly attitudes toward China are insufficient and there is not much point in wasting energy on boosting soft power.