What are the capitalist countries in Asia

Asia's future

Eun-Jeung Lee

To person

Dr. phil. habil., born in 1963; Private Lecturer at the Institute for Political Science at the University of Halle; z. Currently at the University of Tsukuba in Japan.
Address: University of Halle, Institute for Political Science, Emil-Abderhalden Str. 7, 06108 Halle.
Email: [email protected]

Publications among others: Confucianism and Capitalism, Münster 1997; "Anti-Europe". The history of the reception of Confucianism and Confucian society in Europe since the early Enlightenment, Münster - Hamburg 2003; e-politics and democracy, in: Asia, (2003) 87; "Asia" as a project, in: Leviathan, 31 (2003) (i.E.).

For Europeans, "Asia" is the vast area from the Bosporus to Japan. However, "Asia" as such does not exist at all - at least not in the form of an overarching culture.

What is "asian"

"Asia" is a European concept. It comes from Greco-Roman antiquity. [1] Since the time of the oldest European explorer of Asia, the Greek historian Herodotus, the designation "Asia" in the European context has had the connotation of barbaric power, savagery and unpredictability.




Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz also shared this point of view when, at the end of the 17th century, he referred to China as "Europe of the East", of whose high culture and philosophy he learned from the Jesuits from the empire at the other end of the Eurasian continent. [2] This empire could not be an "Asian", that is, a barbaric empire. What he and his contemporaries like Christian Wolff saw in it was a "Confucian ideal state", a model for political reforms in Europe. It was not until the middle of the 18th century that China was anchored in the Orient by Montesquieu's characterization of Chinese rule as an oriental despotism. There was even speculation about the Egyptian ancestry of Chinese culture. In the eyes of the Europeans, the huge area from the Bosporus to Japan became an "Asian" cultural unit, which the philosophers of history described with the term "stagnation" or that of the "childhood" of human civilization.

Since then, Asia has embodied for Europeans what Europe had already left behind. The assessment of the "originality" of Asia, whether as something that has been overcome or something lost, is closely related to the respective intellectual, political and economic circumstances. That is why Edward Said wrote that Asia and the Orient are for Europeans an "arsenal of wishes, repression, investments and projections" [3]. Hermann Hesse once wrote that Asia was not a part of the world, "but a (...) mysterious place (...) there were the roots of all human beings and the dark source of all life" [4]. As such a place of projection, Asia is still present in western perceptions to this day.

"Asia" as such does not actually exist anywhere; at least not in the form of an overarching culture, a feeling of togetherness. In East Asia, the term "Asia" was not even known until the Jesuit missionary Matteo Ricci introduced the term "Asia" in the region with his map of the world, which was distributed throughout East Asia in the 17th century, but without naming the ideological connotation of this term . The Chinese characters that Ricci first used to mark "Asia" on this map are still used throughout East Asia today, as are the characters for Europe. [5]