Guojun XU

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts


Political Science

First Advisor

Dr. John W. Outland

Second Advisor

Dr. Sheila Carapico


China has in recent years embarked on a fresh policy of close cooperation with her former antagonists, the Western countries, not only in economic areas, but also on social, military and political issues. Does this mean that China has given up her highly publicized third world position? Or did China ever genuinely belong with the third world in the past? These questions are explored in the thesis through careful analyses of the origins of China's foreign policies as well as comparative observations of their applications to different countries at different stages. Rather than isolating individual variables, as some writers do, in measuring their impact on the outcome of China's policy, this study takes a contextual approach, combining normative analysis with empirical observation, and blending historical and contemporary perspectives. It concludes that China's differentiation of international political forces should not suggest that China was identifying herself permanently with any one of them, but rather was simply adopting a dialectical approach toward world politics.