GV432      Half Unit
Government and Politics in China

This information is for the 2013/14 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Chun Lin CON3.10


This course is available on the MSc in China in Comparative Perspective, MSc in Comparative Politics, MSc in Conflict Studies, MSc in Global Politics and MSc in Global Politics (Global Civil Society). This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.

This course is capped at two groups.  The deadline for receipt of applications is Friday 11 October 2013.

Course content

Historical and global conditions and present contradictions of economic, social and political transformations in the People's Republic of China; their rival explanations and interpretations.

Often in comparison with other post-communist transitions, other Asian developmental states and other developing countries, discussions of China cover the following topics: its historical and trajectory and international contexts; geopolitics and political demography; central and local state power and central-local relations; bureaucracy as tradition and as invention; social structure and organisation, class, ethnic, and gender dimensions of citizenship; ideology, culture, democracy and legitimacy; nationalism, ethnic nationalism and quasi-federalism, the Taiwan question; political economy and market liberalisation; globalisation, political autonomy and modernity.


10 hours of seminars in the MT. 2 hours of seminars in the ST.

Formative coursework

Students are required to give at least one seminar presentation, and to write one 1,500 word essay, due in week 7 of the MT.

Indicative reading

M Meisner, The Deng Xiaoping Era (1996); B Womack, Contemporary Chinese Politics in Historical Perspective (1999); P Nolan, China's Rise, Russia's Fall (1995); C Bramall, Chinese Economic Development (2008); C Hughes, Chinese Nationalism in a Global Era (2006); D Shambaugh, China's Communist Party (2008); C K Lee, Against the Law (2007); S Heilman & E Perry (eds), Mao's Invisible Hand (2011); M Leonard (ed), China 3.0 (2012).


Essay (100%, 4000 words) in the ST.

Key facts

Department: Government

Total students 2012/13: 44

Average class size 2012/13: 15

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Specialist skills