Credit points: 15

Subject outline

This subject will provide students with an introduction to the political history and contemporary politics of modern China, with an emphasis on China's rise, decline and re-emergence as a global power. We will begin with a brief survey of China during the Ming dynasty (1368 - 1644) and the complex dynamics between foreign imperialism and the rise of Chinese nationalism. In the second half of the subject, students will focus on China's re-emergence since 1949, exploring different aspects of modern Chinese politics, such as the environment, changing notions of 'revolution', prospects for democratisation, globalisation and the Chinese economy, and the minority problem. Students will achieve a richer appreciation for China's past and present, while more critically evaluating China's changing national trajectory and its contemporary moves to reclaim its perceived historical mantle.

FacultyFaculty of Humanities & Social Sciences

Credit points15

Subject Co-ordinatorJames Leibold

Available to Study Abroad StudentsYes

Subject year levelYear Level 3 - UG

Exchange StudentsYes

Subject particulars

Subject rules

Prerequisites 15 credit points of any first year Politics subject and 15 credit points of any Humanities and Social Sciences subject, or subject coordinator's approval


Incompatible subjects POL2CIW

Equivalent subjectsN/A

Special conditions This subject will be offered as a blended learning subject. The online learning modules will be accessed via the LMS.

Learning resources


Resource TypeTitleResource RequirementAuthor and YearPublisher
ReadingsChina Since Tiananmen: From Deng Xiaoping to Hu JintaoRecommendedFewsmith, Joseph 2008CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS
ReadingsChina's Political System: Modernization and TraditionRecommendedTeufel Dreyer, June 6th edition 2009PEARSON LONGMAN
ReadingsGoverning China: From Revolution to ReformRecommendedLieberthal, Kenneth 2nd edition 2003W.W. NORTON
ReadingsPower Shift: China and Asia's New DynamicsRecommendedShambaugh, David ed. 2005UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA PRESS
ReadingsThe New Chinese EmpireRecommendedTerrill, Ross 2004UNIVERSITY OF NEW SOUTH WALES PRESS
ReadingsWhen China Rules the World: The Rise of the Middle Kingdom and the End of the Western WorldRecommendedJacques, Martin 2009PENGUIN BOOKS

Subject options

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Start date between: and    Key dates

Melbourne, 2014, Week 27-28, Day


Online enrolmentYes

Maximum enrolment sizeN/A

Enrolment information

Subject Instance Co-ordinatorJames Leibold

Class requirements

Lecture/Seminar Week: 27 - 28
One 3.0 hours lecture/seminar other recurrence on weekdays during the day from week 27 to week 28 and delivered via blended.


Assessment elementComments%
fortnightly online document modules (equivalent to 800-words)20
one 800-word equivalent blind mid-semester exam20
one 800-word policy briefing paper20
one sighted final exam (equivalent to 1600 words)40