© 2016

The South China Sea and Asian Regionalism

A Critical Realist Perspective


  • Presents historical maps in color

  • Includes step-by-step illustrations on the novelties of critical realism

  • Puts forward an outline of a future research program


Part of the SpringerBriefs in Environment, Security, Development and Peace book series (BRIEFSSECUR, volume 24)

Also part of the Peace and Security Studies book sub series (PESECST, volume 24)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xii
  2. Thanh-Dam Truong, Karim Knio
    Pages 1-13
  3. Thanh-Dam Truong, Karim Knio
    Pages 15-25
  4. Thanh-Dam Truong, Karim Knio
    Pages 85-92
  5. Back Matter
    Pages 93-105

About this book


This book offers an innovative approach to the analysis of the current crisis in the South China Sea. Moving beyond the spirit of the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), the mechanisms of which are limited to physical geography, it demonstrates how epistemological insights from the field of critical realist philosophy can reveal the importance of cultural and structural conditioning processes in social interactions, processes which shape the conditions for the emergence of crisis points along a spectrum of conflict and cooperation. The potential for conflict resolution and the emergence of new regions in Pacific Asia much depends on the nature of such interactions at many levels (political-economic, semiotic and cultural) based on perceptions of what constitutes the "common" versus a Sinicised version of "Lebensraum".


Conflict Resolution China Critical Realism Human Security Maritime Order Peace Regionalism South China Sea UN Convention on the Law of the Sea UNCLOS

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.International Institute of Social StudiesThe HagueThe Netherlands
  2. 2.International Institute of Social StudiesThe HagueThe Netherlands

Bibliographic information

Industry Sectors


“The volume emphasizes the importance of placing research on the South China Sea in a critical realist framework … . A comprehensive bibliography will cater to serious researchers and academics interested in probing deeper into the depths of the multiple dynamics of the South China Sea conflict. The volume has a collection of excellent maps and even archaic old maps of historical importance that have been nicely incorporated with the text.” (Saikat Kumar Basu, South Asian Time,, April, 2016)