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Haunted by Chaos: China’s Grand Strategy from Mao Zedong to Xi Jinping

Before the Chinese Communist Party took power, China lay broken. Today it is a force on the global stage, but remains haunted by the past. Sulmaan Wasif Khan chronicles the grand strategies pursued by China’s paramount leaders: Mao Zedong, who unified the country and kept it whole; Deng Xiaoping who dragged that country into the modern world; Jiang Zemin and Hu Jintao, cautious custodians of Deng’s legacy; and the powerful, insecure Xi Jinping. Despite the costs, China’s grand strategies have been largely successful. But success brings significant challenges—ones ever more pressing in the twenty-first century.

Date & Time

Sep. 24, 2018
4:00pm – 5:30pm

Location

6th Floor, Woodrow Wilson Center
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Haunted by Chaos: China’s Grand Strategy from Mao Zedong to Xi Jinping

Image removed.Before the Chinese Communist Party took power, China lay broken. Today it is a force on the global stage, but remains haunted by the past. Sulmaan Wasif Khan chronicles the grand strategies pursued by China’s paramount leaders: Mao Zedong, who unified the country and kept it whole; Deng Xiaoping who dragged that country into the modern world; Jiang Zemin and Hu Jintao, cautious custodians of Deng’s legacy; and the powerful, insecure Xi Jinping. Despite the costs, China’s grand strategies have been largely successful. But success brings significant challenges—ones ever more pressing in the twenty-first century.

Sulmaan Wasif Khan teaches international history and Chinese foreign relations at the Fletcher School, Tufts University, where he also directs the Water and Oceans Program at the Center for International Environment and Resource Policy. He is the author of Haunted by Chaos: China’s Grand Strategy from Mao Zedong to Xi Jinping (Harvard University Press: 2018) and Muslim, Trader, Nomad, Spy: China’s Cold War and the People of the Tibetan Borderlands (University of North Carolina Press: 2015).

The Washington History Seminar is co-chaired by Eric Arnesen (George Washington University) and Christian Ostermann (Woodrow Wilson Center) and is sponsored jointly by the National History Center of the American Historical Association and the Wilson Center's History and Public Policy Program. It meets weekly during the academic year. The seminar thanks the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations and the George Washington University History Department for their support.


Hosted By

History and Public Policy Program

The History and Public Policy Program uses history to improve understanding of important global dynamics, trends in international relations, and American foreign policy.  Read more

Cold War International History Project

The Cold War International History Project supports the full and prompt release of historical materials by governments on all sides of the Cold War. Through an award winning Digital Archive, the Project allows scholars, journalists, students, and the interested public to reassess the Cold War and its many contemporary legacies. It is part of the Wilson Center's History and Public Policy Program.  Read more

Kissinger Institute on China and the United States

The mission of Kissinger Institute on China and the United States is to ensure that informed engagement remains the cornerstone of U.S.-China relations.  Read more

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