In This Review

Negotiating Cooperation: The United States and China, 1969-1989
Negotiating Cooperation: The United States and China, 1969-1989
By Robert S. Ross
Stanford University Press, 1995, 349 pp

A careful and rigorous examination of the factors that led the United States and China to ‘negotiate cooperation’ from 1969 to 1989. Ross, a political scientist at Boston College, skillfully disentangles the web of considerations -- above all, the common threat from the Soviet Union -- that enabled negotiators to diffuse their hostility. The analysis is particularly useful for its sustained treatment of the delicate negotiations over Taiwan. It is striking how little remains today of the elements promoting concord. The collapse of the common enemy, the reemergence after the repression at Tiananmen Square of ideological hostility, the explosive growth of China’s trade surplus, and the persistence of profound disagreements over Taiwan all suggest that ‘Mismanaging Hostility’ will prove a suitable title for the analyst chronicling the deterioration of relations in the two decades after 1989. Though Ross argues that U.S.-China cooperation remains an important and attainable objective, he provides little guidance on how it might be achieved.