The double-edged sword: reviewing India-China relations

Chris Ogden*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


As Asia’s largest and most rapidly rising powers in contemporary global politics, relations between India and China are becoming evermore intertwined with each other. Clear commonalities typify this symbiosis, including a shared civilisational basis, a mutual desire to rebecome great powers in international relations and common modernisation goals. At the same time, relations are beset by a number of issues, most notably long-standing territorial disputes, frictions over regional hegemony and wider diplomatic tensions (most prominently relating to China–Pakistan and India–United States ties). As such, India–China relations can be considered to resemble a ‘double-edged sword’, whereby elements of their interaction can be regarded as having concurrent benefits and liabilities. This article explores the historical roots and contemporary realisation of such a core dynamic over the last 75 years of relations between New Delhi and Beijing and investigates how their strategic goals are often simultaneously convergent and divergent.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)210-228
Number of pages19
JournalIndia Quarterly
Issue number2
Early online date1 May 2022
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2022


  • China
  • India
  • Threat perception
  • Security
  • Dilemma
  • Multipolar
  • Galwan


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