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Transcendence, sacrifice, and aspiration

This innovative and timely reassessment of political theology opens new lines of critical investigation into the intersections of religion and politics in contemporary Asia. Political Theologies and Development in Asia pioneers the theo-political analysis of Asian politics and in so doing moves beyond a focus on the (Post-)Christian West that has to date dominated scholarly discussions on this theme. It also locates ‘development’ as a vital focus for critical investigations into Asian political theologies. The volume includes contributions by leading anthropologists, sociologists, and political scientists. Each chapter brings new theoretical approaches into conversation with detailed empirical case studies grounded in modern Asia. Not only does the volume illustrate the value and import of this approach to a diverse set of contemporary Asian societies and religions, but it also provides a forceful argument for why political theology itself requires this broader horizon to remain relevant and critical. The focus on ‘development’ – conceptualised broadly here as a set of modern transnational networks of ideas and practices of improvement that connect geographically disparate locations¬¬ – enables a fresh and critical analysis of the ways in which political theology is imagined, materialised, and contested both within and beyond particular nation-states. Investigating the sacred dimensions of power through concepts of transcendence, sacrifice, and victimhood, and aspiration and salvation, the chapters in this collection demonstrate how European and Asian modernities are bound together through genealogical, institutional, and theo-political entanglements, as well as a long history of global interactions.

This book addresses some of the neglected problems, people and vulnerabilities of the Asia-Pacific region. It talks about emancipation, human security, 'security politics', language and threat-construction. The book is divided into three sections: agents; strategies and contexts; and futures. The first section outlines a range of possible agents or actors potentially capable of redressing individual suffering and vulnerability in the region. It examines East Asian regional institutions and dynamics of regionalism as potential sources of 'progressive' security discourses and practices. There is focus on the progressive security potential of regional institutions and regionalism has become increasingly prominent in literature on security in the Asia-Pacific. Two common interpretations of the role of epistemic communities in the construction of security are contested: that they are either passive sources of governmental legitimacy, or autonomous agents with the capacity of constructing or creating state interests. The second section reviews strategies and contexts, outlining a range of different sites of insecurity in the region, the ways in which dominant security discourses and practices emerge, and the extent to which such discourses are contested in different contexts. Indonesian government's approach to minority groups and separatism, the issue of civil unrest and human rights abuses in Burma, and the Australian government's attitude towards refugees and asylum-seekers are discussed. The third section deals with security futures, specifically discussing the question of what alternative security discourses and practices might look like. Finally, the book outlines a feminist critical security discourse and examines its applicability to the Asia-Pacific region.

Political differences yield to economic rivalry
James W. Peterson

Introduction Both Russia and America have made a purposeful and decided effort to direct foreign policy efforts towards Asia, and partly this is related to the growing economies and existing markets in that part of the world. For both nations, an emphasis on Asia would be a kind of welcome relief from the heavy commitments and preoccupations in the West. The United States fought two difficult wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and their denouement offers an opportunity to set new foreign policy priorities. In addition, the Arab Spring presented a

in Russian-American relations in the post-Cold War world
Julie Gilson

T HE SHORT TITLE to this chapter conceals the host of complex geographical, historical, definitional and ideational factors inherent in any attempt to understand what is meant either by ‘security’ in a given region, or the very definition of ‘East Asia’ itself in this particular case. East Asia is not a legally definable entity; it is not bound

in Critical Security in the Asia-Pacific
A critical security appraisal
Marianne Hanson

, Russia and the US, all of which possess sizable arsenals and which show every indication that they will retain these indefinitely. While this book’s focus has been on a more limited designation of what constitutes the Asia-Pacific geographically, the current chapter broadens these geographic parameters to look also at US and Russian nuclear issues. This is done so in the belief

in Critical Security in the Asia-Pacific
David Rowe

Football, diplomacy and Australia in the Asian century 147 8 Football, diplomacy and Australia in the Asian century David Rowe Admitting and expelling Australia? On the eve of the final of the 2015 AFC (Asian Football Confederation) Asian Cup final between host nation Australia and South Korea, the host city’s major newspaper, the Sydney Morning Herald, carried a story about a move among some of the west Asian (especially Gulf) nations to expel Australia from the Asian Football Confederation.1 For those among the hosts who believed that securing the event

in Sport and diplomacy
Stephen R. Nagy

, namely Article 9 and a largely pacifist citizenry that is deeply against the use of the military and revision of the so-called pacifist constitution ( Miyashita, 2007 ). As a consequence of the decreasing efficacy of traditional tools of Japanese foreign policy such as economic incentives, regional challenges have deepened Tokyo’s view not only of the salience of the US–Japan security partnership, but also of the importance of deepening its partnerships in Southeast Asia through economic, political and security linkages ( Nagy, 2017 ). In line with this view, Japan

in Japan's new security partnerships
Paul Midford

direct role in regional and international security and sent its military overseas for the first time since 1945; to ameliorate security threats, both traditional and non-traditional; to hedge against potential US abandonment; and to achieve a modicum of diplomatic independence ( Jishu Gaik ō in Japanese). It shows that Japan has even promoted multilateral security, and especially political, forums on several occasions that have excluded the US, as exemplified by the Hashimoto Doctrine, the ASEAN Plus Three (APT) Forum, and its promotion of Northeast Asian Cooperation

in Japan's new security partnerships
Matt McDonald

A NY SURVEY OF THE processes, dynamics or futures of security in the Asia-Pacific would clearly be incomplete without engagement with the role played by the United States. Indeed, US hegemony 1 has been the defining feature of East Asian security architecture and interaction since the Second World War. And according to traditional accounts, particularly

in Critical Security in the Asia-Pacific
The view from New Delhi
Rajesh Rajagopalan

.S. and India are now partners, along with many other U.S. allies and partners, in managing the consequences of China’s rise in Asia. This does appear to outweigh or at least mute concerns about nuclear stability in the region. Thus, cooperation between the U.S. and India on nuclear stability in the region remains fairly low, and there is little prospect that it will improve dramatically in the near future. There is some shared anxiety about the problem of “loose nukes,” specifically as it relates to Pakistan and its use

in The future of U.S.–India security cooperation