"Oceanus Resartus"; or, Is Chinese Maritime History Coming of Age?

Leonard Blussé, Leiden University
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Abstract

Perhaps the most salient feature of the transformation of China’s economic policy is its tack into the oceanic sphere. This is a break with the country’s traditional past as an inland-looking, continental power: the landscape is now complemented by the seascape. This article suggests that China’s new relationship with the sea asks for a master plan for reclaiming a neglected maritime past—the invention of a national maritime tradition, a newly tailored past to explain China’s former relationship with the sea.

Keywords: Chinese maritime history, One Belt One Road policy, maritime anthropology, nautical traditions, mariculture