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A nation must think before it acts.
China’s rise is a bargaining process between China and the outside world—especially with the United States. This article suggests two strategies, “socialization” and “legitimation,” which a rising power can use to seek “accommodation for identity” with the hegemon. Using China’s peaceful rise after the Cold War as a case study, the essay then examines how China employed these two strategies to reach bargaining deals on the arms control regimes and anti-separatist movements in Xinjiang with the outside world. It concludes that the United States needs to take China’s bargaining efforts seriously and consider possible peaceful accommodation with China.