American Go E-Journal

Boz Slams Dr. K, Says China’s Policy “More Akin To Chess”

Monday October 10, 2011

by Roy Laird
Earlier this year, we covered the skeptical reaction to Henry Kissinger’s claim, in his new book On China, that principles of go — or weiqi, as it’s known in China –  influence Chinese military and political thinking. (Click here to view the article. ) The Economist, The Wall Street Journal and others found the comparison shallow and superfluous. Noted go author Peter Shotwell disputed the historical basis for Kissinger’s assumptions here. Now Richard Bozulich, the founder of Ishi Press and Kiseido and author or publisher of dozens of the finest go books in English, goes even farther, in an essay available for download exclusively on the AGA’s Bob High Memorial Library. In Richard Bozulich on Kissinger on China and Go, he presents a set of facts to support the view that in fact China pursues particularly unreasonable, unyielding policies, while the US and even chess-playing Russia sometimes apply “commonsense” principles that can also be found in go, but do not originate there. Whether or not one agrees, it’s a well-made case and a fascinating read. I especially enjoyed a section intended for non-players in which the “commonsense” aspects of strategic concepts like aji and yosu-miru seem to come clearly into focus, even for a non-player. We eagerly await Dr. Kissinger’s response . . .

Categories: U.S./North America