Analysis of Japanese, US and Chinese Political Leaders’ Statements about Japan’s Foreign Policy

Tatsuro Debroux



The article explores in the light of role theory the statements (speeches, interviews and remarks at the media) of Japanese and foreign political leaders (including high-ranking officials who are probably a reliable indicator of the political  leader’s preference) related to foreign policy during the first and the second Abe administrations. In this article, qualitative content analysis is used to analyze the statements. The two main roles: 1) Japan is  a reliable security partner, and 2) Japan is a pacifist country whose foreign policy is based on non-militarism are dealt with. Statements are categorized into either of them from a role theory viewpoint. The Abe administration’s role location, role competition, role conflicts, consistency and inconsistency betweenJapan’s National  Role Conceptions (NRCs) and the main alter-parts (the other countries  that  can be allied or foes, the US and China in this article) roles  representing the expectation and proscription ofJapancan be analyzed. It it argued that Prime Minister Abe’s attempts to reinforce the assertiveness of Japan’s foreign policy have a result of strengthening ties with the US, which can deter China. Abe does not incur role conflicts either in security or historical issues. He conducts his foreign policy by adjusting NRCs and accommodating role expectations.

Słowa kluczowe

Abe’s foreign policy; Japan-US relations; Japan-China relations; role theory

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