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In: Rethinking China, the Middle East and Asia in a 'Multiplex World'
In: Sociology of Islam
In: Rethinking China, the Middle East and Asia in a 'Multiplex World'


The rise of the brics block has contributed to the emergence of a “multiplex world”. This shift in power dynamics has revealed the crisis of the existing liberal international order, a relative decline in the U.S. power, and a gradual transition towards a post-American order. This article examines the dynamics of Sino-mena relations in a “multiplex world” where both the U.S. and the mena states have chosen “The Look East” policy. The U.S.-China geopolitical rivalry explains a shift in the U.S. foreign policy from the Middle East toward the Far East. The Middle East’s “Look East Policy”, however, is largely due to the needs for an alternative global partner. This article examines three pillars of the Sino-mena relations: the first pillar pertains to a broad category of energy, trade, investment, arms deal, security and geostrategic significance. The second pillar is centred around the Chinese policy of no military intervention and respecting the state sovereignty. The third pillar is pertinent to the “Chinese Model of Development” and what it means for the mena. It examines whether such relations might consolidate autocratic capitalism and neoliberalism without democracy and, or benefit mena civil societies’ quest for a grassroots and egalitarian development and democracy.

In: Sociology of Islam
This edited volume critically examines the changing dynamics of multidimensional relations between China, Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and Asia in an emerging 'multiplex world'. It challenges both extremes of 'Sinophobia' and 'Sinophilia' by studying the real 'pragmatist' China.

This book, in a foreword, introduction and thirteen chapters, problematises what MENA and Asia means to China in the age of neoliberalism, explores what are the real or perceived pillars of Sino‒MENA-Asia relations, and sheds light on how MENA can benefit from its relations with China while keeping a clear distance from the harms of neoliberal authoritarianism.

Contributors are Mojtaba Mahdavi, Tugrul Keskin, Manochehr Dorraj, Sari Hanafi, Habibul Haque Khondker, Dara Conduit, Rigas Arvanitis, Saeed Shafqat, Jordi Quero Arias, Mahesh Ranjan Debata, Andrea Ghiselli, Mher Sahakyan, Michael McCall, Yossra M. Taha and Xiaoyue Li.