Asia Essential Topics

By Trey Krivo and Chad Johnson

China’s Rise Economically and it's Growing Influence Around the World

China has more than $3 trillion in foreign currency reserves and has become the world's biggest lender, with more reserve than the world bank. Growing at eight percent per year, china is quickly becoming a major economy. Moreover, with it's expansion of global trade and communications, China growth is having a world wide impact. China’s economic growth was mainly due to it's large scale capital investment and rapid productivity growth. This gave China a high rate of savings and efficiency, which boosted output and increased resources. These factors combined led to further investment in the China economy. It is not one, but all of these factors combined that caused China’s economic rise and its growing influence around the world.

Hinduism vs. Buddism

Hinduism and buddhism are religions with shared thoughts. Although, some thoughts are similar and others different, the two religions have existed side by side ever since they were founded in B.C. times. One difference between the two religions is that most buddhists don’t worship a god. Almost all buddhist believe in the theory that religious ideas and especially the idea of a god have their own origin in fear. Conversely, followers of Hinduism are polytheistic and worship many gods. Another difference between the two religions was that the founder of Buddhism was Gautama Buddha, while the founders of Hinduism were the aryans of India, made up of multiple people. Additionally, the two religions have different sacred books, Hinduism reads the Vedas, while Buddhism reads the Tripikita. Some similarities between the two religions are that they both support the teaching of Karma, cycling of births and deaths for a person’s soul, meditation, higher and lower worlds (heaven or hell), have a version of Tantra, and both originated in India. Even though these two religions have a lot in common, their differences have led to many conflicts and strained relationships throughout the centuries.

The Kashmir Conflict

The Kashmir Conflict, starting around 1947, is a land dispute between India (Hinduism) and Pakistan (Islam) over the Kashmir Region, located in the northwestern region of India. India owns approximately 43% of the region, while Pakistan owns roughly 37%. There has been at least three wars, including the Indo-Pakistani Wars and several skirmishes. The conflict has caused thousands of deaths, with less deaths in recent years. This was primarily caused by protest movements, which voiced Kashmir's disputes to the Indian Military. However, in 2009 and 2010, there was unrest between the two regions. A

fter the Indian Army claimed to kill three Pakistani infiltrators a series of violent protests and riots in the Kashmir Valley took place. In response, there were protests against the killings and massive force was used to get rid of the protestors. Several people were killed, including a young boy.

The Caste System

India's caste system is comprised of four classes (as illustrated below):

Brahmin - Scriptural education and teaching, essential for the continuation of knowledge.

Kshatriya - Public service (all forms). This includes administration, maintenance of law and order and defense.

Vaishya - Commercial activity as businessmen.

Shudra - Semi-skilled and unskilled laborers.

The caste system which grew out of religious belief dictated how each class was placed into specific occupational groups. By utilizing this system it took away the motivation from the lower castes to move ahead. This in turn affected economic progress and had a negative effect on the economy. This system to a degree still exists today, for example acknowledgements of ranking in business where a young official may address another senior, who may or may not be his superior as, chachaji. Additionally, although the classes intermingle they rarely marry.

Although unfair, castes cannot be considered racist, since castes are not based on race but on specific classes. Additionally, the caste system, while rooted in religion, is not a heavenly way of life. Taking away the freedom to choose one's own destiny.

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China’s 1 Child Per Family Policy

China’s 1 child policy was introduced in 1978 and has caused negative consequences unforeseen by the Chinese government. The ratio of male to female has decreased, with many more males then females surviving. This has caused many problems with reproduction now and in the future. Since men are more highly valued in China , it was common place for families to murder baby girls born in order to try for a boy and still comply with the 1 child policy. Moreover, recent findings show that children born after the policy began are less competitive, more risk averse, less conscientious, less trustworthy, and more pessimistic. Another example of the strong arm of the governments power to control the population is the story of one women, a 23-year old Chinese girl named Feng Jiamei, forced into having an abortion against her will. She is just one example of the millions of organized abortions in China. Instances like these violates policies set by china. However, the policy has fufilled its goal to lower the birth rate, with significant results.

Work Cited

"China Expands Economic Influence Around the World." VOA. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 May 2013. < 47109/167682.html>.

Kuhn, Anthony. "Series Overview: China's Growing Influence." NPR. NPR, n.d. Web. 17 May 2013. <>.

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Nordqvist, Joseph. "What Was China's One Kid Per Family Policy's Impact?" Medical News Today. MediLexicon International, 14 Jan. 2013. Web. 17 May 2013. <>

"The New England Journal of Medicine." The Effect of China's One-Child Family Policy after 25 Years — NEJM. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 May 2013. <>.

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