A Contest for Supremacy – China, America, and the Struggle for Mastery in Asia
by Aaron Friedberg
Aaron Friedberg is a political scientist who taught at Princeton and served from 2003 to 2005 in the office of the Vice President of the United States as deputy assistant for national security affairs and director of policy planning. In the preface to this book, published in 2012, he states that although “the book took the better part of five years to research and write, it had been gestating for a good deal longer than that.” Indeed, the author has been preoccupied since the mid 1990s, much earlier than most of the “China experts” in the academic and business communities and across large portions of the U.S. government, with the growing challenge that China presents to the current world order.
“Sober and well-informed … A pleasure to read. … A careful and compelling examination of the U.S.-Chinese relationship from a number of angles.”―Financial Times
There may be no denying China’s growing economic strength, but its impact on the global balance of power remains hotly contested. Aaron Friedberg argues that our nation’s leaders are failing to act expeditiously enough to counter China’s growing strength. He explains how the United States and China define their goals and reveals the strategies each is now employing to achieve its ends. Friedberg demonstrates in this provocative book that the ultimate aim of Chinese policymakers is to “win without fighting,” displacing the United States as the leading power in Asia while avoiding direct confrontation. The United States, on the other hand, sends misleading signals about our commitments and resolve, putting us at risk for a war that might otherwise have been avoided. A much-needed wake-up call to U.S. leaders and policymakers, A Contest for Supremacy is a compelling interpretation of a rivalry that will go far to determine the shape of the twenty-first century.
You are invited to discuss this book at the virtual meeting of the Book Club on Wednesday, March 29, from 12:30 to 2:30PM.
This is a private, alumni-only, off-the-record discussion. The views and opinions expressed in this program are those of the speakers and participants and do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of The Harvard Business School Club.
Participants must register by Noon on March 28th to receive details on joining the discussion. The Zoom link will be sent out 24 hours before the event.