Chinese Ambassadors

The Rise of Diplomatic Professionalism Since 1949

Xiaohong Liu

  • Published: 2001. Paperback 2002
  • Subject Listing: Asian Studies / China; Politics
  • Bibliographic information: 282 pp., illus., notes, bibliog., index, 6 x 9 in.
  • Territorial rights: N / A In Asia, Aust Or N / Zealand
  • Contents

Xiaohong Liu brings twelve years of personal experience in the Chinese foreign service to this pathbreaking study. Drawing on her own direct observations, interviews, and newly available Chinese sources, she examines four generations of Chinese ambassadors, who served from 1949 to 1994. She charts the evolution of the Chinese diplomatic corps from its early military orientation to the emergence of career professionals and assesses the impact of various ambassadors on Chinese foreign policy.
Xiaohong Liu , a former Chinese foreign service officer who worked on Western European affairs in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs from 1977 to 1989, lives in Virginia.

"Chinese Ambassadors brings to bear a thorough reading of memoirs, histories, and documentary materials on previously sensitive aspects of PRC foreign relations and politics."
-H. Lyman Miller, author of Science and Dissent in Post-Mao China

"The author has culled an extraordinarily large number of memoirs of Chinese diplomats that have not been used much, if at all, in English-language scholarship to date. She provides fascinating insights into the workings of the Chinese foreign service and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs."
-David Bachman, University of Washington

The Dawning of New Diplomacy
A Revolutionary Institution-Builder: Zhang Wentian
Reaching Out to the World
Learning the Craft: Zeng Tao, Liu Chun, and Xiong Xianghui
The Cultural Revolution and its aftermath
Old Faces, New Roles: Fu Hao and Ding Xuesong
The Reform Years
A New World Order? Guan Zihuai and Huang Zhiliang
Selected Bibliography

"A useful and informative study of a little known subject, which is a valuable addition to modern studies of diplomacy."
-Asian Affairs

"A significant addition to the literature on Chinese foreign policy. It will also be of value to scholars studying the impact of political movements and economic reforms on the Chinese bureaucracy and those interested in comparative studies of diplomacy."
-Political Science Quarterly

"This thoughtfully structured and soundly based volume offers an insider's insightful probe into four generations of Chinese ambassadors and their evolution from military cadres to career professionals. Liu suggests that the development has helped to mold a more pragmatic and more cosmopolitan political culture for the ruling elite, instilled an open attitude toward international cooperation, and 'transformed China from an outsider to an insider in the international system.'."