For China’s One-Party Rulers, Legitimacy Flows from Prosperity and Competence

The West Still Underestimates Beijing’s Ancient Social Contract with “Heaven”

It is widely assumed in the West that legitimacy of a government comes from universal suffrage and multiparty competitive elections. Yet this assumption raises two issues: First, historically it is not true, as universal suffrage is a recent development. One can claim, for instance, that U.S. administrations only became truly legitimate in 1965, when African Americans were really allowed to vote. Furthermore, this practice is confined only to nation-states. It is difficult to imagine that, say, the European Union could establish its legitimacy and play its unifying role on the …

More In: Beijing

How California Can Survive the U.S.-China War

The Golden State Should Be the Voice of Reason in the Conflict Between Autocrats in D.C. and Beijing

California is trapped—caught in the dangerous space between two menacingly authoritarian regimes that want to fight each other.

One regime is headquartered in Beijing, and the other is about to take …

What Does China’s Growing Middle Class Desire Most? Blue Skies.

Decades of Rapid Industrialization Created Massive Pollution, Now Wealthier Chinese Are Demanding a Cleaner Environment

Over the last 35 years, China’s economy has completely transformed itself, thanks to urbanization and industrialization.

As their country has become the “world’s factory,” hundreds of millions of Chinese people …

Supermodels in the Forbidden City

Chinese Photographer Chen Man Shows Ancient Tradition Meeting Avant-Garde Fantasies

by Scarlet Cheng

Chinese photographer Chen Man has been witness to the dizzying modernization of China of the last 20 years. She recalls growing up in the quiet hutongs (alleyways) of …

Beijing Steps Out of the Shadows

The Contest of the Century

As Beijing bureau chief for the Financial Times, Geoff Dyer watched China begin to wield its power not just for domestic economic growth but to expand its geopolitical reach around …