The rise of China has generated renewed interest in theories of hegemonic stability and transition. However, existing studies do not address the central questions at the heart of the contemporary debate about the future of hegemony: how strong is the American hegemon’s position and what is the likelihood that China can lead a successful counter-hegemonic coalition? While existing studies focus on either military-economic factors or elite Chinese beliefs, the future of the present hegemonic order hinges on the broader distribution of ideas amongst the great powers. In order to assess the strength of American hegemony and the likelihood of a successful Chinese challenge, we must look at the support for the reigning hegemonic ideology or vision of international order in the domestic discourses of other great power states.
Ted Hopf is the Provost Chair Professor of Political Science at National University of Singapore, and previously served on the faculties of Ohio State University, Ohio University and the University of Michigan. His main fields of interest are international relations theory, qualitative research methods, and identity, with special reference to the Soviet Union and the former Soviet space.