How to build a 'Beautiful China' in the Anthropocene. The political discourse and the intellectual debate on ecological civilization

Marinelli, Maurizio (2018) How to build a 'Beautiful China' in the Anthropocene. The political discourse and the intellectual debate on ecological civilization. Journal of Chinese Political Science, 23 (3). ISSN 1874-6357

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Abstract

The aim of this article is to contribute to the debate on global prosperity in the postGDP world, with specific attention given to the political discourse and intellectual debate on ecological civilization in China. I will first assess the national and international implications of assuming that China as a whole is a 'locality'. I will then focus specifically on one of the most significant political and intellectual debates in Chinese studies today, namely the social and environmental challenges linked to China's political and socio-economic development. In this light, I will engage with the debate on the Anthropocene - the era during which humans have become an earthaltering force - and its interrelationship with the discourse on ecological civilization. In China, the term 'ecological civilization' appeared in the 1980s in the academic domain and was then appropriated by political discourse. This article proves that the concept of eco-civilization, in a similar way to the Anthropocene, has a significant discursive power: it allows for a shift from the binary political economy discourses of 'growth' versus 'development', and 'socialism' versus 'capitalism', to the inquiry of eco-socially sustainable prosperity. The final aim of this article is both to offer a more nuanced analysis of the relationship between the political discourse and academic debate, and to substantiate the rhetoric trope of 'Advancing Ecological Civilization and Building a Beautiful China'.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Ecological civilization; Governance; Prosperity; Anthropocene; Beautiful China
Schools and Departments: School of History, Art History and Philosophy > History
Research Centres and Groups: Sussex Asia
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DS History of Asia > DS701 China
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
J Political Science
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Depositing User: Maurizio Marinelli
Date Deposited: 26 Mar 2018 15:35
Last Modified: 24 Apr 2018 06:01
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/74655

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