The Chinese Political Model

Modernity, transition and reform in China Seminar

From an old Mao-style totalitarianism to a new digital totalitarianism in the period of globalization?

After two seminars dedicated to the understanding of the Chinese economy over the past few decades (mechanism, inventory, and evolution), entitled “Does a Chinese model of economic development exist?” (2018) and “The Chinese economy at the crossroads, inventory and probable future" (2019), the seminar this year is oriented towards another fundamental field of contemporary China: the political system and functioning.

What is the Chinese political model? The political factor is the key to grasp the factors of permanent change of this gigantic country in all domains, as has been seen in previous seminars. The speakers will try to analyze certain major events that have taken place in the last few decades, events whose impact has been a determining factor in the political path of contemporary China. Particular attention will be given to the attempts of authorities to modernize State institutions, between centralized and local power. These evolutions intervene in the framework of a great transition of China since the modern era and in the context of post-communist transition of China. Because of this, the recent evolutions show a new totalitarianism unique to China, which relies on digital techniques and financial resources accumulated thanks to international exchanges and the integration of the country into the world economy. It has thus become primordial to take an interest in this new totalitarianism in gestation and its evolution such as the destiny of China and of the world will be inseparably linked to this new totalitarianism. This phenomenon poses a new challenge for social sciences in the understanding of power today.

This seminar is part of the research project Modernity, transition, and reform in China, organized by Lun Zhang, jointly with the Agora research group at the Université de Cergy-Pontoise. Several renowned international researchers, amongst the best Chinese, French and international researchers will speak in the various sessions.




Seminar sessions (in French)