chapter  14
20 Pages

Scholarly Exchange and American China Studies

One of the surprises of the late twentieth century is the extraordinary renewal and resilience of intellectual ties between the United States and the People's Republic of China. On the eve of China's Tiananmen tragedy, more than forty thousand Chinese students and scholars were studying in the United States, more than two hundred American universities enjoyed reciprocal agreements with Chinese institutions, and genuinely collaborative research in the social and natural sciences was beginning to flourish. In less than two decades, American scholarly exchange with China had evolved from an abstract dream to an accelerating reality. The events of 1989 initially halted this momentum. Yet, despite continuing ideological constraints and some restrictions on American research in China, scholarly relations between the United States and the People's Republic of China were flourishing in 1993 (Bullock 1991; Strevy 1990). By some estimates nearly eighty thousand Chinese students and visiting scholars now reside in the United States.