Conditions and motivations for China to promote cultural internationalism

Cultural internationalism has gradually emerged in the form of political trends and diplomatic ideas in international society over the past century. It says that every country has been attaching importance to the role of culture in its overall diplomatic process at different stages of international cooperation to enhance cultural soft power. We suggest here that it is time for China to promote cultural internationalism in global governance, and the motivations for China to do so not only lie in the strong demand of the world for an advanced cultural order, but also depend on China’s favorable conditions.

The global Chinese community

China has gradually entered the upper-middle stage of the world's production system, and with the globalization of Chinese enterprises and populations, China has also gradually become a center of world immigration and communication. undertaking the task of global interconnection. As an open-minded nation, the Chinese are, for the first time, going with the pace of globalization with orderliness and inclusiveness, not only to Europe and America but also to the rest of Asia, Africa, and Latin America. It is worth noting that this time, the Chinese migration has not been triggered by natural disasters or domestic political turmoil but has been motivated by globalization and the power of world-historical development, which can be compared with the movement of European residents’ world migration after the Industrial Revolution. We might as well call this trend the "formulation of the global Chinese community”. Together with the global circulation of Chinese capital and commodities, the Chinese people have constituted an important aspect of the future international society.

International community and China’s role in international governance

In recent years, the author has frequently used the concept of "international society expectations”, mainly referring to an international political sociology description that considers international society’s expectation as a crucial source of a country's international responsibility and authority. Furthermore, it also serves as a source of legitimacy for a country's leadership in global governance, showing differences with traditional legitimacy sources such as natural law, international social contract, international law, or authorization from the United Nations.4 During the Cold War, the New China was carried into the United Nations by our brothers and sisters in Asia, Africa, and Latin America, with their expectations for China to fulfill its responsibilities in world peace and security. Nowadays, many friends in the Eurasian region, especially those from Germany, Russia, France, and Britain, are hoping China will assume its international responsibility for global economic governance and even take the role of leadership in global governance. These challenges and opportunities should also raise China's awareness of the new trend in the global system. On one hand, the American people have encountered sustainable development challenges, willing to readjust their overall policies, and pay more attention to domestic issues rather than overseas struggles. To consolidate the comprehensive national strength, the United States has considered giving up part of its international responsibilities, which has been criticized as selfishness. However, at the same time, the United States keeps adjusting its hegemonic strategy, reconsidering the issue of international responsibility and global leadership transfer under the “American priority” diplomatic concept. The historical experience of war and national diplomatic psychology will prevent the U.S. from handing over leadership to Germany, Japan, and Russia. Based on its political culture and national interests, the U.S. is willing to support India to play the role of great power, yet the country still lacks comprehensive national strength and international status to undertake such international responsibilities. On the other hand, globalization requires China to seize the chance to enhance its overall national strength and international status to achieve its goal of national rejuvenation. Moreover, it should also maintain rational world order, protecting international society’s interests while enjoying the public goods and benefits of globalization. Under the circumstances where no sufficient public goods are provided, China could take the leading role in providing relevant resources. Therefore, we could suggest that this kind of international responsibility is determined, to a large extent, by the international society’s strong expectations of China and China’s own sense of mission.

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