This book examines how China’s international political communication of the Belt and Road Initiative comprises narratives about infrastructure and the Silk Road.
By carefully selecting infrastructure modalities and Silk Road representations, it is argued that China’s aesthetic production of the Belt and Road Initiative advances China’s image as an infrastructure and standards-setting power, conjures up a historical continuation of friendly and cooperative relations, and forges China’s identity as good neighbor, good friend, and good partner. Using a multiple-case study approach, this book analyses China’s communication of the Second Belt and Road Forum, the Alternative North-South Road in Kyrgyzstan, the Standard Gauge Railway in Kenya, and the China-Maldives Friendship Bridge. Detailed literary analyses of the Travels of Marco Polo and the Travels of Ibn Battutah further elucidate China’s selective uses of history. Chapters highlight spatial, temporal, political, economic, technological, and perceptual modalities in infrastructure narratives, and reveal the composition of Silk Road narratives, contributing to key debates about Chinese discourse, media strategy and infrastructure communication.
China’s Communication of the Belt and Road Initiative will appeal to students and scholars of politics, international relations, communication, and Asian studies globally.