Book review: The End of the Asian Century by Michael Auslin

By Kapil Komireddi

asian centuryIn November 2013, as the Chinese Communist Party prepared to release its economic strategy for the next decade, an influential paper written by former United States Treasury Secretary Larry Summers and his Harvard colleague Lant Pritchett questioned the prevalent view that “the global economy will increasingly be shaped and lifted by the trajectory” of India and China.

For more than a decade, the West, starstruck by the economic performance of New Delhi and Beijing, had been telling itself that the 21st century would be Asia’s. Books with titles such as When China Rules the World, The Chinese Century and India Express: The Future of the New Superpower materialised alongside neologisms like “Chindia” and “Chimerica”. Summers and Pritchett dismissed this as “Asiaphoria”, and warned against hitching “the cart of the future global economy to the horse of the Asian giants”.

In The End of the Asian Century: War, Stagnation, and the Risks to the World’s Most Dynamic Region, Michael Auslin updates the unremittingly pessimistic outlook of Summers and Pritchett. Auslin, a former Yale history professor who now serves as a resident scholar at the conservative American Enterprise Institute in Washington, DC, is a distinguished scholar of Japan. His previous book, Negotiating with Imperialism, was a groundbreaking history of Japanese diplomacy in the 19th century. Read more

Source: The National