China’s Strategic Culture and Foreign Policy
The rise of China is a defining event in world politics. International Relations (IR) scholars employ different IR theories to examine and predict the political, economic, strategic implications of the ascendency of China on the world stage. One school of thought-the strategic culture approach-deserves particular attention. Differing from traditional realist and liberal approaches, strategic culture theory crosses the disciplines of cultural studies, history, and strategic studies. Theoretically speaking, the strategic culture approach is rooted in social constructivism in IR, which argues that ideational factors, such as culture and identity, rather than material variablespower and interests-are “what make(s) the world hang together” (Ruggie 1998).