Fridays@1: Michael Beckley and Hal Brands

Friday, April 21, 2023

1:00 pm — 2:30 pm


Open to the Public

As part of the LP2 Fridays@1 speaker series, Michael Beckley and Hal Brands will discuss their new book Danger Zone: The Coming Conflict with China

brands and backley headshots
Admission Price



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Michael Beckley is an associate professor of political science at Tufts University who's written widely on China. He's a former fellow at Harvard's Kennedy School and is currently a nonresident senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute. Hal Brands is a professor at the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies and a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute. Their new book is Danger Zone: The Coming Conflict With China.

Beckley and Brands argue that China today fits the profile of a dangerous adversary, a rising power that has reached a point where its growth seems to have peaked and its leaders become increasingly reckless in striking out against rivals allying against them. 

The Sino-American contest is driven by clashing geopolitical interests and a stark ideological dispute over whether authoritarianism or democracy will dominate the 21st century. But both history and China’s current trajectory suggest that this rivalry will reach its moment of maximum danger in the 2020s. China is at a perilous moment: strong enough to violently challenge the existing order, yet losing confidence that time is on its side.

Sketching the scenario of a Chinese invasion of Taiwan in 2025, the authors argue that such an attack would not be the “inevitable outcome of China’s growing strength and confidence,” but a gamble made by Chinese leaders fearful that the country is on the cusp of decline.