The Woodrow Wilson Center Press

What People are Saying

“This spare and elegant study is a singular contribution to the history of the Chinese Communist Party in particular and modern Chinese history more broadly speaking, in an area that has been relatively neglected by Western historical scholarship. Using an impressive array of Chinese documentary evidence and grounding his work in the best recent scholarship on nationalism and ethnopolitics, Liu has focused on a dimension of Chinese Communist history that is too often overlooked, namely, the ethnopolitical dimension of the CCP’s rise to power.”—Steven I. Levine, University of North Carolina–Chapel Hill

“This book makes good use of Communist Party documents recently made available and is a solid piece of scholarly work on a neglected aspect of the rise of Chinese Communism. It is a welcome addition to the burgeoning literature on the Chinese Communist Revolution.”—International History Review

“The book is a significant contribution to our understanding of Chinese ethnopolitics.”—The Journal of Chinese Political Science

Frontier Passages presents a fascinating, persuasive and innovative account of a somewhat neglected dimension of modern Chinese and CCP history.… [It] is a rigorous and interesting scholarly work that presents a number of thought-provoking arguments regarding the CCP’s historical development and the role of ethnopolitics in modern Chinese history that would be of interest to specialists, students, and general readers alike.”—Asian Studies Review

Chapter List

List of Maps
Acronyms and Abbreviations
Note on Transliteration

1. Prologue: From the World of China to China of the World
Historical Renewal
The World of China
China of the World
China Nationalized

2. Bolshevization: Limitations of Conversion
Anti-Imperialism in Two Tones
Containing the Chinese Revolution
Go among the “Minorities”?

3. Sovietization: A Rebellious Option
“Advanced South” versus “Backward North”
“Red Banner” versus “Black Banner”
Iconoclastic Hunanese and the “Marvelous Georgian”
International or National Minorities

4. Northernization: The Search for a Peripheral Strategy
“Upper-Stratum Line”
Where To?
“Great Hanism”
“Bod-Pa People’s Republic” 

5. Nationalization: In Lieu of Internationalization
“Breakthrough to the Soviet Union”
Genesis of a Failure
“Trap of Nationalism”
“Chinese Nation” 

6. Borderization: Trans-Ethnic Reach
Neighborly Behavior
A Time for “Incidents”
“Minorities” Close Up
Frontier Personality

7. Epilogue: From the “Chinese Nation” to China of Nations?
A Matter of “Maturity”
“Historic Self-Determination”
A “New Era”
“From the Forefathers’ Footsteps” 

About Woodrow Wilson Center Press

Woodrow Wilson Center Press publishes books by fellows, other resident scholars, and staff written in substantial part at the Wilson Center.