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The Politics of East Asia

China, Japan, Korea

by John E. Endicott Author · William R. Heaton Author


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This is the first undergraduate text on the politics of East Asia to be published since 1970. Looking at both domestic and international politics, the authors discuss the political systems of China, Japan, and Korea within the context of environmental factors, culture, society, the economy, geography, language, historical and political traditions, etc. The People's Republic of China is presented as a country with strong traditions, committed to rapid development under frequently changing ideological auspices. Its two governmental apparatuses—the party and the bureaucracy—sometimes act in unison, sometimes are locked in fierce struggles, and often are motivated by differing ideologies and administrative dynamics. Japan is seen as a mature society and a developed economy with functioning democratic institutions and a strong party system, but, like the PRC, subject to powerful traditions and influenced by radical ideologies. Both North and South Korea are discussed, with a comparison and contrast of the authoritarian-democratic system in the South, where a basically democratic parliament finds itself in conflict with a quasi-dictatorial regime and an all-powerful president. The book is completely up to date. The section on China takes into account the major developments of the post-Mao period, including the accession of Hua Kuo-feng and the struggle against the Shanghai faction. The discussion of Japanese politics covers the 1976 elections, and the creation of the Shin Jiyu club in the developing thrust away from factional politics to an issue-oriented electorate.

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Taylor and Francis
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