Topic: HistoryUnited States

Last updated: March 31, 2019

RoxSanna Allen Chris Main Intro to International Relations 13 September 2018 Using the concepts and terms of the constructivist perspective, explain why the rise of China in the 21st century seems to be more of a threat to the United States than the rise of the US in the 20th century seemed to the United Kingdom. During the America’s rise to power in the 20th century the United Kingdom, who was currently in power, didn’t take it as too much of a threat, they accepted it and moved on.

However, this is not the case for China’s rise to power in the 21st century. Some would assume it’s because America is just being greedy, however, wouldn’t the United Kingdom have been the same way? The answer is no because of the social construct America has formed against China. From a constructivist approach we know that we are the ones that decide what is acceptable and what isn’t.

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Our social construct, concepts formed by conversations, attitudes, and beliefs, is what we decide. Americans are generally of the same nation and have similar religious beliefs and morals which are similar to the United Kingdom, considering at one point most, if not all, Americans were from the United Kingdom. However, China is of a different culture making our social construct different. When one state is overpowering another state, whether or not they have the same social construct will determine if it will be accepted or not. While China didn’t explicitly ask if they could come to power, it can still be an issue of moral power, if twocountries get along they will be more likely to persuade others to adopt a particular belief or take a particular course of action. In this case it would be not making a big deal about China coming to power. In the case of America’s rise to power of the United Kingdom, they said similar beliefs so, the United Kingdom allowed America to ride to power.

The in case of China rising to power of America, they don’t have similar beliefs and they are of extremely different nations so, America isn’t too keen on the idea of China rising to power. America is now using the conflict theory, making social constructs in their favor so they are perceived as the better of the two, to make China’s rising to power be considered not okay. In this world we have many different states and nations that all want power, however, we are more likely to allow a state/nation to rise to power if we have identify in the same way in the terms of nation, religion, and if we run our states in the same way. When power transfers from one state to another if they identify the same and have the same morals then no one cares too much because nothing is going to change. However, when power changes hands and goes to a state with a different identity and morality, then other states find this more problematic because they know that there is a big change coming.

In conclusion, China’s rise to power over America isn’t an issue of American being greedy, but rather only wanting to pass the power over to someone in which we share morality with. As long as the state that has the most power is of the same morality and identity as the previous holder nothing will change. However, as soon as power changes hands to a state of a different morality and identity people will have something to say about it because, it will affect their way of life.


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