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How can the dynamism of modern Asia be explained ? Is there a unified Asian identity which could point to subsequent unification ? What is the role of the State, and the future of democracy in Asia ? François Godement presents one of the first major histories of the contemporary Far East in which he not only traces the recent history of the continent, but also reveals the future for occidental societies. François Godement is a professor at the Institute of Eastern Languages and head of research at the French Institute for International Relations.