Hong Kong through Chinese Eyes

A pair of binoculars on Victoria Peak overlooking the Hong Kong skyline in 2013. (Bobby Yip/Reuters)
Given the great antiquity of the Chinese civilization-state, Peking rejects the notion that liberty under law has staying power in the broad sweep of history.

NRPLUS MEMBER ARTICLE L ast week in this space, I argued that the idea of the Westphalian nation-state is an insufficient way of thinking about Putin’s Russia. I used the term “civilization-state,” coined by Martin Jacques, to describe the Russian president’s understanding of his own country. A civilization-state is a polity whose collective self-consciousness far predates the advent of the nation-state on the world stage and can subsequently maintain political identity across vast expanses of time in spite of changing constitutional settlements. The salient features of these polities are language, race, religion, and other characteristics that can be projected back into the mists of


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