A Cognitive Discourse Study of the US’s Cognition of China in Sino-American Strategic Competition

Bin Zhou


Since the US initiated the strategic competition with China, many scholars are attracted by this topic. Although they have studied it from many aspects, few noticed the importance of the US’s cognition of China and gave it a comprehensive and scientific study. By using non-classical taxonomic structures of categorization theories in cognitive linguistics, and distribution of capabilities among units, interaction between units, and interactions between unit and security complexes in theories of international relations, this article studies the US’s cognition of China in SinoAmerican strategic competition from the perspective of cognitive discourse study. After analyzing the non-classical categories the US uses to recognize China in United States Innovation and Competition Act of 2021, this article discovers that the US regards China’s approaching capability has threatened its hegemony; the US possesses a complex categorizing model, and arrogant and anxious mentalities; the gaps between the US and China are being narrowed; the US’s domestic political structure has flaws; the US cannot contain China alone, but it has strong international integrating abilities to do so. Compared with traditional international relations study, this study not only deepens our understanding of the US’s cognition of China by disclosing its categorizing model on China and its mentalities, but also establishes a scientific, objective, convenient, and feasible operation paradigm for international relations study by integrating the methods of discourse analysis and international system analysis. The future study can explore the impacts on East Asian security of the US’s cognition of China with the help of security theories in international relations.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5430/sass.v9n1p1


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Studies in Asian Social Science    
ISSN 2330-2143 (Print)  ISSN 2330-2151 (Online)

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