AIIA Event - Amy King and Amy Catalinac on Sino-Japanese relations: old enmities and new rivalries?

The contemporary China-Japan relationship is scarred by the legacy of Japanese war and imperialism in China. Yet in the midst of this tension and hostility, the two countries enjoy major trade and investment ties. Amy King and Amy Catalinac will examine the Sino-Japanese relationship from two different perspectives. In her talk, Amy King will examine the origins of this paradoxical China-Japan relationship. She will take us back to the late 1940s, 50s and 60s—the decades immediately after the Second World War—when the People’s Republic of China worked hard to try and build an economic relationship with Japan, then its Cold War opponent and erstwhile wartime enemy. She will explain what motivated China’s Communist leaders to try and reach out to Japan, and the implications of this period for our understanding of the contemporary China-Japan relationship. 

Amy Catalinac will discuss Japan’s apparent lurch to the right, which is making headlines around the world. Numerous studies have assumed that Japan's rightward shift is a no-brainer, attributing it to growing concerns about the rise of China. In her presentation, Amy Catalinac challenges the notion that Japanese politicians or the Japanese public are lurching to the right. She presents evidence that Japan’s contemporary obsession with national security has little to do with China and would have occurred even if China was not rising. Instead of moving to the right, she explains that Japan is lurching to the ideological centre, where it is likely to stay.

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About the Speakers

Dr Amy King is a lecturer in the Strategic and Defence Studies Centre. She received her doctorate in International Relations from the University of Oxford, where she was an Australian Rhodes Scholar. Her research focuses on Sino-Japanese relations; the economic-security nexus; and the legacy of war, imperialism and late industrialisation in Asia. Amy holds a Bachelor of Arts (First Class Honours in International Studies) and a Bachelor of International Business from the University of South Australia, and an M.Phil in Modern Chinese Studies (Distinction) from the University of Oxford. She has also studied at Peking University in China, and Okayama University in Japan. Prior to coming to the ANU, Amy taught at the University of Oxford and University of South Australia, and worked as a research analyst at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute. 

Dr Amy Catalinac is a Research Fellow in the Department of International Relations at the Australian National University.   She graduated with a Ph.D. from the Department of Government at Harvard University in 2011.   Her research focuses on Japan’s role in the world.   She is working on a book project that seeks to explain why conservative Japanese politicians paid so much attention to national security after 1997 than they did before 1997.   It applies new tools for quantitative text analysis to a new collection of 7,497 Japanese-language candidate election manifestos, which she collected during fifteen months of fieldwork in Japan, as well as more than one hundred interviews, observations of the campaigns fought by several politicians in the 2009 election, and months spent as an intern in the Liberal Democratic Party’s Tokyo headquarters.   Amy earned her B.A. Hons (First Class) in Political Science from Victoria University of Wellington in 2003 and her B.A. in Japanese and Political Studies from the University of Otago in 2002.   She studied at the University of Tokyo on the AIKOM program and again from on a Japanese Ministry of Education scholarship, during which time she served as an intern for Japan's Liberal Democratic Party.   She has taken ten years of training in Japanese and has spent five years in Japan.    Her research has been published in Foreign Policy Analysis, Politics and Policy, Japan Forum, and Political Science.



Updated:  27 November 2018/Responsible Officer:  JI Management Group/Page Contact:  Japan Institute