RAS Book Club

RAS Library

On China: Henry Kissinger


Monday 15th Sep 2014 at 7 pm
Venue: RAS Library, Sino-British College
The RAS Book Club will meet to discuss:

On China

Author: Henry Kissinger
ISBN-10: 0143121316
ISBN-13: 978-0143121312
Publisher: Penguin Books
Publication Date: Reprint edition April 24, 2012
Paperback: 624 pages
Copies of the book will be available at RAS events prior to this meeting. You may also obtain a copy of the book by contacting the RAS Book Club (see below).
Entrance: RMB 20 (RAS Members) and RMB 50 (non-members) including a drink (tea, coffee, soft drink, or glass of wine). Those unable to make the donation but wishing to attend may contact us for exemption, prior to this RAS Book Club event. Member applications and membership renewals will be available at this event.
THE BOOK (Wikipedia)
On China is a 2011 non-fiction book by former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger. Kissinger, one of the most famous diplomats of the 20th century, is well known for the role he played in Sino-American relations during the Nixon administration and in particular the 1972 Nixon visit to China.  Thus, his book focuses on Chinese history through the lens of foreign policy considerations, and in particular his own brand of realpolitik.  It focuses on how Sino-Soviet border clashes forced China to consider a new opening of relationship with the United States. 
The book also discusses the complex decision-making of chairman Mao Zedong during the Taiwan Strait Crisis.  The preliminary negotiations began through the ambassadorial levels in Warsaw, Bucharest and through Yahya Khan in Pakistan.  In addition to pure history and discussion of foreign policy, the work is also something of a personal narrative of Kissinger’s experiences in China, and in that respect is a memoir intended to bolster positive perceptions of his expertise and influence when it comes to Chinese-American relations.
The book follows six sequential themes: 
1.China’s early history
2.China’s inadequate attempts to modify the imperial system of the later dynasties
3.The formative years of Maoist consolidation
4.Kissinger’s own experiences while orchestrating President Nixon’s 1972 China visit
5.China’s later cycles of “opening up” and repression under Deng Xiaoping
6.A surprise final section that ingeniously links pre–World War I British and German expansion 
    to some of the current problems facing the United States and China today.
THE AUTHOR (Wikipedia)
Henry Alfred Kissinger born Heinz Alfred Kissinger; May 27, 1923) is a German-born American statesman and political scientist. A recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize, he served as National Security Advisor and later concurrently as Secretary of State in the administrations of Presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford. After his term, his opinion was still sought by some subsequent US presidents and other world leaders.
A proponent of Realpolitik, Kissinger played a prominent role in United States foreign policy between 1969 and 1977.  During this period, he pioneered the policy of détente with the Soviet Union, orchestrated the opening of relations with the People’s Republic of China, and negotiated the Paris Peace Accords, ending American involvement in the Vietnam War.
Kissinger is still considered an influential public figure.  He is the founder and chairman of Kissinger Associates, an international consulting firm.
RSVP: bookevents@royalasiaticsociety.org.cn