• A
  • A
  • A
  • ABC
  • ABC
  • ABC
  • А
  • А
  • А
  • А
  • А
Regular version of the site

Contemporary Chinese Politics

2023/2024
Academic Year
ENG
Instruction in English
4
ECTS credits
Course type:
Elective course
When:
4 year, 1, 2 module

Instructor

Course Syllabus

Abstract

This course is tailored for students majoring in “Political Science and International Relations”, whose regional focus is BRICS states and who want to learn more about contemporary Chinese politics. The aim of this course is to familiarize students with political development of the PRC after 1978. First, the course discusses major events in China’s political history and their implications for contemporary Chinese politics. Second, the students focus on domestic politics in China: major political institutions and their evolution, the impact of politics on the trajectory of economic development, role and structure of political elites, policy-making process, public participation in political life and political regime transformations. Students also discuss selected policy areas, e.g. media and economic policies. Third, the course focuses on politics of religion, ethnicity and popular culture. The course not only provides factual knowledge about politics in China, but also offers conceptual perspectives to study it, such as political culture, political elites, political economy, political regime and democratization, etc.
Learning Objectives

Learning Objectives

  • • To give students an overview of the major changes and transformations in Chinese politics since 1978.
  • • To acquaint students with the major political institutions and policy-making process in the PRC, the basic trends of political elites’ and public’s participation in Chinese politics.
  • • To develop students' skills in application of theoretical models to the analysis of political processes in the PRC.
Expected Learning Outcomes

Expected Learning Outcomes

  • Explains the changing role of ideology in Chinese politics
  • Describes structure of political system in China, key state (government, legislature, judiciary) and CCP institutions and their functions
  • Knows major facts about Chinese political elites: characteristics and types, selection, key strategies for success
  • Is familiar with the role of provincial, municipal and local governments in Chinese politics
  • Applies political economy perspective to the analysis of Chinese economics since 1978
  • Works with information related to politics and governance in the PRC: finds, evaluates, systematizes and uses information necessary for solving scientific and professional problems from various sources
  • Uses the conceptual apparatus of political science to analyze Chinese politics
  • Knows key events in China’s political development 1949-1978 and explains resilience of authoritarian regime in the PRC
  • Knows major formal political institutions in Taiwan, their functions and composition
  • Knows the background and implementation of the “One country, two systems” principle
  • Applies the concepts of political culture and political participations to the analysis of Chinese politics, gives examples of collective actions and protests in China
  • Knows the typical features of policy process in China, role of society and local governments in this process, applies this knowledge to the analysis of particular policies development
  • Describes development of media policy, zero tolerance to COVID-19 and economic policies in China
  • Knows China’s demographics in terms of ethnic composition and religious preferences
  • Describes development of ethnic and religious policies in China
  • Is familiar with how popular culture influences politics in China and vice versa
Course Contents

Course Contents

  • Part 1. Introduction and China's political history (lecture 1 and seminar 1).
  • Part 1. Introduction and China's political history: Deng Xiaoping and his successors (seminar 2).
  • Part 2. Political institutions: the Central Governing Apparatus (seminar 3)
  • Part 2. Political institutions: provincial, municipal and local governments (seminar 4)
  • Part 2. Political institutions: Taiwan (seminar 5)
  • Part 3. Civil Society and Political Participation: Civil Society (seminar 6).
  • Part 3. Civil Society and Political Participation: Protestors and protests in China (seminar 7)
  • Part 4. Policy-Making and Selected Policies: Policy Process in China (seminar 8)
  • Part 4. Policy-Making and Selected Policies: Media policy (seminar 9).
  • Part 4. Policy-Making and Selected Policies: Political Economy and China’s Model of Development (seminar 10).
  • Part 5. Politics of Ethnicity, Religion and Culture: Politics of Ethnicity and religion (seminar 11)
  • Part 5. Politics of Ethnicity, Religion and Culture: Tibet and Xinjiang (seminar 12)
  • Part 5. Politics of Ethnicity, Religion and Culture: Politics of Popular Culture (seminar 13)
Assessment Elements

Assessment Elements

  • non-blocking Test
    During seminar 5 students take a test, which has 10 questions of different types: multiple choice, questions with open answer, etc. The test assesses students’ comprehension of the materials discussed during lecture 1 and seminars 1-4. If a student is not able to attend the seminar 5 due to illness or any other legitimate reason (relevant document should be provided), he/she would be given another opportunity to take the test. The student should approach the lecturer the same week s/he is back to the university. In other cases, students get "0" for the test if they skip seminar 5.
  • non-blocking In-class participation
    Lecturer evaluates students’ progress, including comprehension of lecture materials and assigned readings, as well as contribution to discussions. The component is calculated as an average grade achieved on all seminars. If a student is not able to attend the seminar due to illness or any other legitimate reason (relevant document should be provided), he/she is not graded for that seminar. In all other cases students are graded with 0 for the seminar they have missed.
  • non-blocking Group presentation
    Depending on the number of students, presentations will be conducted individually or in groups by 2-3 students. The time limit for presentation is 20 minutes and should not be exceeded. Students are expected to read literature recommended in the syllabus, as well as to search for extra sources, especially in order to get most recent information on the topic of their presentation. If a student is not able to be present at the seminar due to illness or any other legitimate reason (relevant document should be provided), he/she should approach lecturers to be assigned with alternative task the same week s/he is back to class. The presentation cannot be moved to another seminar, other students in his/her group should present without the missing student.
  • non-blocking Exam
    The exam is a written test with different types of questions: multiple choice, questions with open answer, etc.
Interim Assessment

Interim Assessment

  • 2023/2024 2nd module
    0.4 * Exam + 0.2 * Test + 0.2 * Group presentation + 0.2 * In-class participation
Bibliography

Bibliography

Recommended Core Bibliography

  • William A. Joseph. (2014). Politics in China : An Introduction, Second Edition: Vol. Second edition. Oxford University Press.

Recommended Additional Bibliography

  • Heilmann, S. (2008). From Local Experiments to National Policy: The Origins of China’s Distinctive Policy Process. China Journal, 59, 1–30. https://doi.org/10.1086/tcj.59.20066378
  • Heilmann, S. (2008). Policy Experimentation in China’s Economic Rise. Studies in Comparative International Development, 43(1), 1–26. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12116-007-9014-4
  • Joniak-Lüthi, A. (2015). The Han : China’s Diverse Majority. University of Washington Press.
  • Landry, P. F., Xiaobo Lü, & Haiyan Duan. (2014). Does Performance Matter? Evaluating the Institution of Political Selection along the Chinese Administrative Ladder. Conference Papers —— American Political Science Association, 1–45.
  • O’Brien, K. (2011). Studying Chinese Politics in an Age of Specialization. Journal of Contemporary China, 20(71), 535–541. https://doi.org/10.1080/10670564.2011.587157
  • Shih, V. C., & Keller, F. B. (2016). Moving beyond Factions: Using Social Network Analysis to Uncover Patronage Networks among Chinese Elites. Journal of East Asian Studies, 16(1), 17–41. https://doi.org/10.1017/jea.2015.3
  • SHIH, V., ADOLPH, C., & LIU, M. (2012). Getting Ahead in the Communist Party: Explaining the Advancement of Central Committee Members in China. https://doi.org/10.1017/s0003055411000566
  • YUEN, S. (2015). Hong Kong After the Umbrella Movement: An uncertain future for “One Country Two Systems.” China Perspectives, 1, 49–53.
  • Zhu, J. V. (DE-588)1035651459, (DE-576)383417864, aut. (2017). Weapons of the powerful : authoritarian elite competition and politicized anticorruption in China / Jiangnan Zhu, Dong Zhang.