19 April 2010

China Goes to Sea: Lecture at Naval War College Museum, Thursday 22 April 2010, 12 noon-1 pm

Andrew S. Erickson, “China Goes to Sea: Lessons from the Past,” Eight Bells Book Lecture, Naval War College Museum, 22 April 2010.

Time: Thursday 22 April, 12 noon-1 pm

Location: 2nd Deck, Naval War College Museum, Newport, RI 02841-1207

Point of Contact: John W. Kennedy, Director of Museum Education and Public Outreach, tel. (401) 841-7276

China Goes to Sea is a collection of essays edited by Professors Andrew Erickson, Lyle Goldstein and Carnes Lord of the Naval War College. To shed light on current Chinese naval developments, the authors examine cases of attempted transformation from continental power to maritime power throughout history, from the Persian Empire to the Soviet Union, and determine the reasons for success or failure. The latest example of attempted maritime transformation is China’s turn toward the sea, as manifested in its stunning rise in global shipbuilding markets, wide-ranging merchant marine, expansive offshore energy exploration, growing fishing fleet, and increasingly modern navy. Unlike other works that view China in isolation, this comprehensive assessment of China’s potential as a genuine maritime power places China in a larger world historical context. Without underestimating the enduring pull of China’s past as it embodies threats to the country’s internal stability and its landward borders, this comparative study provides reasons to believe–despite continued skepticism–that China has indeed turned the corner on maritime transformation. If this proves to be true, such a transformation would be an extraordinary event in the history of the last two millennia. China Goes to Sea updates other books written on the subject that have been overtaken by China’s rapid strategic and technological change and offers a forward-looking analytical framework for understanding the future of Asian maritime power.

For further details, see:

Andrew S. Erickson, Lyle J. Goldstein, and Carnes Lord, eds., China Goes to Sea: Maritime Transformation in Comparative Historical Perspective (Annapolis, MD: Naval Institute Press, July 2009). Copies are on sale in the Naval War College Foundation Gift Shop.

Andrew Erickson, Lyle Goldstein, and Carnes Lord, “China Sets Sail,” The American Interest 5.5 (Summer, May/June 2010), 27–34.