GFIR  424:  China in World Affairs

Fall 2000

Tuesday/Thursday 11:00am-12:15pm, Cabell 431


Course Instructor:  Paige Johnson

Phone:  984-3127 (call anytime)



Office Hours:  T, R1:15pm to 2:30pm and by appointment

Office location: Cabell B-24




About the Course


Is China a threat to the United States and the current world order that should be contained?  Or is China a partner that should be engaged?  These are some of the questions that this introductory course on China’s role in world affairs should prepare students to answer.  The course hopes to move beyond this easy dichotomy, though, to consider China’s international relationships in all their complexity. 


The course should arm students with an arsenal of perspectives on the determinants of Chinese policy: from history, ideology, the structures of Chinese domestic decision-making, the personalities of individual leaders, and China’s place in the international system of states.  The course will also consider the sources of other nations’ China policies.  Relationships with the US, Russia, Japan, and Southeast Asia will be a special focus.


The course should be theoretically rigorous enough for those planning graduate level studies on China or in International Relations.  It should also be practical enough for those hoping only to gain a solid introduction to Chinese foreign policy. 


Course Requirements


Students will be evaluated on the basis of a midterm (20% of final course grade), an analysis of media coverage of China (10%), an op-ed piece on China policy (10%), a negotiation simulation (20%), class participation (5%), and a final exam (35%). 


The midterm examination will be held on October 17th.  It will consist of an essay and several short answer questions.


Students will do a short paper (4-5 pages) on media coverage of China and the impact of that coverage on international relations.  The media assignments are due October 10th.


Students will write a 3-4 page opinion piece (an “op-ed”) on an issue of contemporary interest in Chinese foreign policy.  Op-eds are due November 2nd.


The negotiation simulation will be conducted on November 16 and 21.  Students will work in country groups and prepare a paper in preparation for the simulation.  After the simulation, students will write a short, follow-up paper individually on their participation in the exercise and lessons learned.


Although this class is a relatively large one, class participation is strongly encouraged.  Exploring issues in class, in office hours, and/or by e-mail with the instructor all contribute to class participation.   


The final exam will be held from 9:00am to 12:00pm on Thursday, December 14.  It will cover the entire course.  Students will answer three essay questions (students will have some choice of questions).


 College of Arts & Sciences Deadlines


To add the course:  September 12

To drop the course:  October 10


Required Books


Deng, Yong and Fei-ling Wang, eds.  In the Eyes of the Dragon: China Views the World.  Lanham, MD:

Rowman and Littlefield, 1999.


Kim, Samuel S, ed.  China and the World: Chinese Foreign Policy Faces the New Millennium.  Boulder:

Westview, 1998.


Mann, James.  About Face: A History of America’s Curious Relationship with China, From Nixon to

Clinton.  New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1999.


Course Packet available at The Copy Shop, 5-B Elliewood Avenue (phone—295-8337).  The packet is on reserve at Clemons Library.  Additional readings may be passed out from time to time in class or via e-mail.


Other Resources: World Wide Web


General links to scholarly resources and news about China and International Relations:


AsiaGateway at

Asia Society’s Asia Source Homepage at

Asian Studies World Wide Web Virtual Library (WWWVL) at the Australian National University at

BBC Asia programming—listen to the China Service in Mandarin or to East Asia Today in English

China: A Country Study, U.S. Library of Congress at

China Headline Links from ChinaOnline at

China Links from the University of Michigan at

China News Digest at

Chinese Foreign Policy Net at

Chinese Military Power page at

CNN/Time/Asiaweek AsiaNow at

Department of State on U.S.-China relations at

East Asia Center Asialinks at

                Embassy of China to the United States at               

Embassy of the United States to China at

Far Eastern Economic Review at

                Foreign, Comparative, and International Resources from the Department of Political Science

at Louisiana State University at

Human Rights Watch/Asia at

Inside China at   

International Affairs WWWVL at

Internet Guide for China Studies—Politics at

Maps from the University of Texas at

Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Japan) on Japan-China relations at

Ministry of Foreign Affairs (PRC) at

Ministry of Foreign Affairs (RoC) at

Political Resources on the Net: China at

Political Science WWWVL at

                South China Morning Post (Hong Kong) at

                Taiwan WWWVL at

Tibet Government in Exile at


Periodicals and Scholarly Journals


As wonderful as the web is for research, periodicals and scholarly journals still form the backbone of our academic work.  Some periodicals/journals helpful for the study of China and International Relations are listed below:



American Political Science Review

Asian Survey

Australian Journal of Chinese Affairs

China Information

China Quarterly

Current History

Foreign Affairs

Foreign Policy

International Security

International Organization

Journal of Contemporary China

Journal of Democracy

Pacific Affairs

Pacific Review

Problems of Communism


Washington Quarterly

World Politics



Electronic Communication


I have set up an electronic list for the course.  Messages sent to the course list will be sent to all course participants.  I will use the list from time to time to send out reminders about course deadlines and occasionally current news stories from East Asia that we might discuss in class.  Students are strongly encouraged to use the list as well--to communicate about issues raised in class, reading assignments, or anything else that comes to mind.  Send messages to for broadcast to the course list.


Course Schedule


Aug 31                  Course Introduction

                                Consider Geopolitics.


Sept 05                 Approaches to the Study of Chinese Foreign Policy

                                                What are some basic theories that help us to understand the nature of Chinese

foreign policy?  Why do we use theory?

Reading: Kim, Chs. 1-3.


Sept 07                 The Importance of History: The Legacies of Empire and Semi-colonialism             

                                                Why does history matter in a consideration of China’s foreign policy?  What

specific historical experiences, trends, or phenomena can we see as relevant to

Chinese foreign policy today? 

Reading:  Mark Mancall.  China at the Center: 300 Years of Foreign Policy.  New

York: Free Press, 1984, pp. 13-39, 105-188.  “Qianlong’s Rejection of Macartney’s

Demands: Two Edicts ” and “Japan’s Twenty-one Demands, 1915.”  In Pei-Kai

Cheng and Michael Lestz with Jonathan D. Spence, eds.  The Search for

Modern China: A Documentary Collection.  New York: W.W. Norton, 1999, pp.

103-109, 167, 216-220.


Sept 12                 The Importance of History: National Revolution and World War II

                                                How did the long Chinese revolution impact Chinese foreign policy?  What

about the invasion of China by Japan and China’s role in World War II?

Readings:  Mancall, pp. 189-209, 235-312.


Sept 14                 Ideology: Marxism, Leninism, Mao Zedong Thought

                                Can ideology affect foreign policy?  If so, how?  Did Mao’s thought impact

                                Chinese foreign relations?  If so, how?

Reading: Lenin.  “Imperialism.” David McLellan, ed.  Marxism: Essential Writings

Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988, pp. 153-163.  Mao Tse-tung. “On New

Democracy.”  Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung, Volume II.  Peking: Foreign

Languages Press, pp. 339-384. Mao Tse-tung.  “A Single Spark Can Start a Prairie

Fire.”  Selected Works of Mao Tse-Tung, Volume I.  Peking: Foreign Languages

Press, 1975, pp. 117-128.


Sept 19                 Two Camps, Leaning to One Side—the 1950s

                                                Why did China choose a strategy of “leaning to one side” in the 1950s?  Can

we see ideology and Cold War politics at work?  What were the goals and

achievements of Chinese foreign policy during this period?  How was China

viewed abroad?

                                                Reading:  Wang Gungwu.  China and the World.  London: Macmillan, 1977, pp.

27-66. “Treaty with the Soviet Union,” “The Chinese People Cannot Be Cowed

by the Atom Bomb,” and “U.S. Imperialism is a Paper Tiger.” Cheng, et. al., pp.

358-360.      Selections on Sino-Soviet Relations in Franz Schurmann and Orville

Schell, eds.  Communist China.  New York: Vintage, 1967, pp. 231-266.


Sept 21                 Oppose Imperialism and Revisionism—the 1960s

What was responsible for the Sino-Soviet split?  How did the split manifest itself? 

How and why (from both the Chinese and U.S. sides) did China-U.S. relations improve in the early 1970s?

Reading:   Wang Gungwu, pp. 67-105.  Selections on Sino-Soviet and Sino-U.S.

relations in Schurmann and Schell, pp. 267-289, 491-502, 581-596.  Mann, pp. 13-

77.     “Joint Communiqué Between the People’s Republic of China and the

United States of America” (The Shanghai Communiqué).  February 28, 1972.

[ONLINE]. [accessed June 13, 2000]


Sept 26                 China in World Affairs: China and the Third World

                                                What determined China’s evolving relationship with the nations of the Third


Reading: Kim, Ch. 7


Sept 28                 The Economic Imperative—Opening China from 1978

                                Reading:  Robert G. Sutter.  Chinese Foreign Policy: Developments After Mao

                                New York: Praeger, 1986, pp. 60-130.  Deng Xiaoping. “Hold High the Banner of

                                Mao Zedong Thought and Adhere to the Principle of Seeking Truth from Facts”

                                and “The Present Situation and the Tasks Before Us.”   Selected Works of Deng

                                Xiaoping.  Peking: Foreign Languages Press, 1984, pp. 141-144, 224-258.


Oct  03                  National Interest: China, Vietnam, and Cambodia 1975-1979

                                                This session will examine China’s evolving relationship with the U.S. during a time

of intense national and international changes and consider the case of the

Chinese invasion of Vietnam in 1979.  Why did the U.S. and China finally agree

to normalize relations effective January 1979?  What were the complex causes

of the Chinese invasion of Vietnam?

Reading: Mann, pp. 78-114.


Oct  05                  The Evolving Chinese Foreign Policy Decision-Making Process

                                How is foreign policy made in post-Mao China?  Who makes decisions?  Who

gets a say and on what policies?  This session will also deal with U.S. China

relations during the 1980s.  What was China’s “Independent Foreign Policy?”

Reading: Chih-chia Hsu.  “Foreign Policy Decision-making Process in Deng’s

China:  Three Patterns for Analysis.” Asian Perspective.  Vol. 23, No. 2.  1999, pp.

197-223.      Mann, pp. 115-174.  Zhao Ziyang.  Work Report Delivered to the Sixth

National People’s Congress.  May 15, 1984.  Published as “Independent Foreign Policy.”  In China and the World (5).  Beijing: Beijing Review Foreign Affairs, 1985, pp. 5-23.


Oct  10                  Tiananmen: The Battle over Human Rights and State Sovereignty

                                This session will begin to explore tensions in the U.S.-China relationship that

became apparent in the wake of the suppression of dissent at Tiananmen

Square in 1989.  What is the place of human rights in the foreign policies of the

U.S. and China?  Can we see other factors at work in the deterioration of


Reading: Dragon, Ch. 5.  Kim, Ch. 10. Mann, pp. 175-225.

                                China and the media assignment due.


Oct  12                  The End of the Cold War: Facing a Unipolar World
                                How did the end of the Cold War affect China’s position in the world?  This
session will examine a number of cases from the Gulf War to the South China
Sea to Kosovo to discuss China’s role in world affairs in the 1990s.
Reading:  Mann, pp. 226-273.


                Oct 17                   Midterm


                Oct 19                   China’s Strategic Position and Perception of National Interest in the Post Cold-

War World

                                                How do the 1990s look to Chinese foreign policy makers?  What is China’s

national interest now?  What can we learn from an examination of “China’s


Reading: Dragon, Chs. 2 and 3. Kim, Ch. 8.  Embassy of the People’s Republic of

China to the United States.  “China’s Diplomacy Aims at Safeguarding National

Interests, Promoting World Peace.”  Undated. [ONLINE].  [accessed June 13, 2000]


                Oct 24                   Fall Reading Days—no class


Oct  26                  China in World Affairs: China and the United States

                                Why have relations between the U.S. and China been rocky in the 1990s?  What
pressures have been at work on both sides?  Considering the two Clinton-Jiang
summits, can we ascertain whether and how summitry might matter?  
Reading: Mann, pp. 274-368. Kim, Ch. 4.  Dragon, Chs. 7 and 8, as well as pp.


Oct  31                  China in World Affairs:  China and the United States, Continued
                                Reading:  Bill Clinton.  “Remarks by the President in Foreign Policy Speech.” April
7, 1999. [ONLINE].
[accessed May 20, 2000]


Nov 02                  China in World Affairs: China and Russia

                                                What role do China and Russia play in each other’s foreign policy? 

Reading: Kim, Ch. 5.  Gilbert Rozman.  “Shifting Triangular Relations Between

China, Russia, and the US.”  China Online.  April 27,2000. [ONLINE]. [accessed June 13, 2000]

                                                Op-eds due.


Nov  07                 China in World Affairs: China and Japan                                              

                                                This session will explore the profitable and often prickly relationship between

China and Japan.  What are the driving forces behind the relationship?  What

pushes the two together and what drives them apart?  We will explore the issue

of the apology demanded by China in Jiang’s November 1998 summit with

Japan as well as the resulting summit declarations and press announcements. 

Reading: Kim, Ch. 6. “Japan-China Joint Declaration On Building a Partnership

of Friendship and Cooperation for Peace and Development” and “Joint Press

Announcement on Strengthening Cooperation Between Japan and China

Toward the Twenty-first Century.” November 26, 1998. [ONLINE]. Ministry of

Foreign Affairs (Japan)  [accessed June 13, 2000]. 

Handouts re:  Apology. 


Nov  09                 China in World Affairs: China and Southeast Asia

                                                From running dogs of imperialism to sources of capital for development to allies

in a low-key struggle with the United States over human rights, China’s

perceptions of Southeast Asia have changed dramatically since Mao’s time. 

This session will explore how China views Southeast Asia and how a selection of

Southeast Asian nations view China.  The session will focus on Indonesia,

Singapore, Malaysia, and Vietnam.

Reading: Dragon, pp. 183-193.  Chapters on Indonesia, Singapore, and

Malaysia from Alastair Iain Johnston, ed.   Engaging China: the Management of

an Emerging Power.  New York: Routledge, 1999, pp. 87-131.


Nov  14                 China in World Affairs: The International Implications of the Taiwan Issue

                                                While the PRC considers the Taiwan question to be a domestic matter, it is clear

that the issue has far-reaching implications for regional and even global

relationships.  How does China view Taiwan?  How does Taiwan view China? 

Where does the U.S. fit? 

Reading: Dragon, Ch. 10. Johnston, pp. 57-86. Taiwan Affairs Office and the

Information Office of the State Council (People’s Republic of China).  “White

Paper—The One China Principle and the Taiwan Issue.” February 21, 2000. 

[ONLINE].  [accessed June 13,

2000].  Chen Shui-bian.  “Text: Taiwan President Chen’s Inaugural Address.” May

20, 2000.  [ONLINE].  [accessed June 13, 2000]


Nov  16                 NEGOTIATION SIMULATION

                                                Group papers due.


Nov  21                 NEGOTIATION SIMULATION


Nov  23                 Thanksgiving Holiday


Nov 28                  China In World Affairs: China and International Organizations

                                                What determines China’s approach to various international and regional

organizations?  What is China’s role in these organizations?  How do other

nations attempt to manage China through embedding the nation in networks

of international norms and organizations? 

Reading: Dragon, Ch. 4.

                                Individual after-action reports on the negotiation simulation due.


Nov 30                  China in World Affairs: China and Interdependence

                                                What does globalization look like from the Chinese perspective?  What is the

meaning of interdependence for China’s foreign policy and domestic politics?

Reading:  Kim, Ch. 9.  Thomas G. Moore.  “China and Globalization.  Asian

Perspective.  Vol. 23, No. 4. 1999, pp. 65-95.


Dec  05                 China in World Affairs: China and International Economic Organizations (WTO)

                                                China’s participation in international organizations and its membership bid for

the World Trade Organization will be considered as a subsection of China’s role

in international organizations more generally.  Is there a difference between

China’s participation in international economic organizations and those dealing

with security?  Why and how does China engage the world through these

organizations?  Reading: Kim, Ch. 11.  Handouts on China and the WTO. 


Dec  07                 Course Conclusions

                                                After exploring Chinese foreign policy for a semester, what have we learned? 

What themes and commonalities are important in a study of China’s role in

world affairs?

Review for final examination.

Reading: Kim, Ch. 13. 


Dec 14                  9:00-12:00 Final Examination