A commonly accepted thesis is that China's spectacular economic development and the expansion of a middle class that it entails will sooner or later lead to a liberalization of its political system and a more or less gentle evolution towards democracy. How sure can we be of that?
Jean-Pierre Cabestan shows the fragility of this thesis with regard to the actual functioning of the Chinese political system and its relations with society. It sets out the reasons which make it much more likely to maintain an authoritarian and modernizing regime run unchallenged by the Communist Party, the main one being the broad consensus of the elites around this project.
Founded 107 years ago, Éditions Gallimard is one of the leading French publishers of books. The Guardian has described it as having ¨the best backlist in the world¨. The text originally of ¨China Tomorrow: Democracy or Dictatorship¨ is in French but is waiting to be translated to English, hopefully very soon.
Jean-Pierre Cabestan is Professor in Political Science, Head of the Department of Government and International Studies at Hong Kong Baptist University. Prof. Cabestan is also the author of a large number of publications which include titles such as ¨The Chinese political system. A New Authoritarian Equilibrium¨, Paris, Presses de Sciences Po, 2014 and ¨China's foreign and security policies.Between integration and will to power¨, Paris, Presses de Sciences.