The Regionalization of ‘Asia’: Asianism from Below and Its Failure
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This chapter analyses how and why Asianism in the second half of the 1920s was linked to attempts at practical implementation of an alternative regional order against the Western-centric domination of global affairs. In response to and rejection of the racialist seizure of Asianism in the first half of the 1920s, from 1926 onwards alternative conceptions of Asianism emerged in growing numbers. Most of these conceptions emphasized pragmatic aspects of Asian commonality and envisioned a non-racialist regional order based on geopolitical views. Regionalizing Asia for those proponents meant a simultaneous de-racializ ation and rationalizing of (the idea of) Asia. In addition, this chapter studies the Pan-Asian Conferences of 1926 and 1927, which were attempts to implement Asianism as political practice and marked the peak of non-governmental Asianist activity.