The myth of Chinese exceptionalism

Yuan-kang Wang

All nations tend to see their history as exceptional, and these beliefs usually continue a heavy dose of fiction. Here are the top three myths of contemporary Chinese exceptionalism.

Myth #1: China did not expand when it was strong.

Myth 2: The Seven Voyages of Zheng He demonstrates the peaceful nature of Chinese power.

Myth 3: The Great Wall of China symbolizes a nation preoccupied with defense.

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