Mingjun Zhang and Xinye Wu, Eds., Public Security and Governance in Contemporary China
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Mingjun Zhang’s and Xinye Wu’s Public Security and Governance in Contemporary China is an informative collection of essays that purport to examine the efficacy of ‘stability maintenance’ in China since the early 1990s. More specifically, Zhang’s and Wu’s volume attempts to shed light on the myriad deficiencies associated with merely ‘managing’ the numerous ‘contentious actions’—such as official government corruption, labor disputes, arbitrary land acquisitions, air and water pollution, and so on—that have now come to define a good portion of China’s public security environment. In all, the book consists of twelve chapters, of varying quality, and generally concludes that existing national, regional, and local approaches to resolving widespread social, political, and economic dissent and ‘instability’ are inadequate and are in need of reform.
Zhang and Wu certainly deserve credit for taking on such a difficult, but altogether important area of inquiry. Indeed, above all else, the volume...