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Understanding Contemporary Asia Pacific, 2nd edition

Katherine Palmer Kaup, editor
Understanding Contemporary Asia Pacific, 2nd edition
ISBN: 978-1-62637-927-5
ISBN: 978-1-62637-983-1
2021/521 pages/LC: 2020031862
Understanding: Introductions to the States and Regions of the Contemporary World
Also of interest: Asia Pacific in World Politics, 2nd ed. by Derek McDougall
Praise for the 1st edition:

"Provides a true survey of the region…. The range of pertinent topics that make up the text cross disciplinary boundaries, offering a great deal of knowledge that is accessible and stimulating." —Helen Lansdowne, University of Victoria

"An essential introduction to a dynamic and increasingly significant region." —Guoli Liu, College of Charleston


Understanding Contemporary Asia Pacific provides a comprehensive introduction to one of the most complex and rapidly changing regions in the world today.

This thoroughly revised new edition reflects more than a decade of major developments in the region (encompassing China, Japan, the Koreas, and all of the ASEAN member states), including the impact of the 2020 coronavirus pandemic. With accessible discussions of history, politics, economics, international relations, society, and culture, it provides the tools essential to understanding the dynamic Asia Pacific and its influence in the global arena.


Katherine Palmer Kaup is James B. Duke Professor of Asian studies and politics and international affairs at Furman University.


  • Introducing Asia Pacific—K.P. Kaup.
  • A Geographic Preface—S. Toops.
  • The Historical Context—C. MacKerras.
  • Political Systems—K.P. Kaup.
  • Economies—K. Khandke.
  • International Relations—D. McDougall.
  • Civil-Military Relations—J. Woo.
  • Environmental Challenges—D. Magee.
  • Population and Urbanization—D. Forbes.
  • Ethnicity—K.P. Kaup.
  • The Role of Women—Y. Rodgers and N. Tanjeem.
  • Religion—S. Britt.
  • Looking Forward—K.P. Kaup.