Cover image for China's new rulers : the secret files
China's new rulers : the secret files
Nathan, Andrew J. (Andrew James)
Publication Information:
New York : New York Review of Books, [2002]

Physical Description:
237 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm
Subject Term:
Added Author:
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Call Number
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DS779.26 .N382 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

On Order



Based on internal Chinese Communist Party documents smuggled out of the country, this is a controversial look at the leaders who will shape the future of Chinese policy. Photos.

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Again breaching the secrecy enveloping leadership politics in China, the authors reveal the jockeying behind the retirement of Jiang Zemin and succession of Hu Jintao to be ordained at this month's congress of the Chinese Communist Party. When China specialists Nathan and Gilley disclosed documents about top-level power struggles in The Tiananmen Papers (2001), Chinese officialdom unconvincingly denied their authenticity. It may well be dismissive again, but the authors' explanation of this book's provenance, and moreover, the detail of its contents, create confidence in its accuracy. Nathan and Gilley base their text on that of a Chinese writer whom they trust, Zong Hairen (a pseudonym). Zong's material in turn relies on personnel reports on seven men who will likely compose the most powerful body in the Chinese political system, the Politburo Standing Committee. The promoted members' biographies, patrons, personalities, and policy inclinations become less mysterious in Nathan's and Gilley's construction, which although undramatic in style is quite as informative as an intelligence assessment. A select group of readers, such as students, businesspeople, or diplomats, will be keen for this glimpse into the new leaders' views on China's future direction. --Gilbert Taylor

Choice Review

Published on the eve of the emergence of a new generation of leadership in China, this volume could not be more timely for China watchers. Edited by Nathan (Columbia Univ.) and Gilley (Princeton Univ.), the book is largely based on leaked confidential files. It offers a rare glimpse into the latest round of succession process in the history of the People's Republic of China and seeks to "help people outside of China to deal with that country as it is." Following an introduction about the files, chapter 2 probes into the long power struggle that resulted in the new leadership. Chapters 3 and 4 deal with two groups of China's new leaders labeled as politicians and managers. Chapter 5 discusses other important figures in the top policy circles. Chapter 6 reviews the Jiang Zemin years from 1989 to the present, while chapters 7 and 8 look at a variety of issues that may impact China's future. Chapter 9 attempts to explain how the Chinese Communist Party sees itself. The book suggests that "unprincipled engagement, premised on the hope that China will naturally evolve as we wish as long as the world is trading and talking with it, is unfounded." ^BSumming Up: Highly recommended. General readers and lower-division undergraduates and above. S. K. Ma California State University, Los Angeles

Table of Contents

1 The Files and Their Contentsp. 3
2 A Restrained Struggle for Powerp. 39
3 The Politiciansp. 77
4 The Managersp. 103
5 Supporting Cast: Youth, Women, Eldersp. 133
6 New Light on the Jiang Yearsp. 169
7 Domestic Reform and Democracyp. 199
8 China's Place in the Worldp. 231
9 The Party Looks in the Mirrorp. 257
Illustrationsp. 14
Indexp. 267