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Li (Shenzhi) papers
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Li Shenzhi (1923-2003) was a social scientist and key advisor to leaders in the People's Republic of China. He served as foreign affairs secretary for Zhou Enlai; foreign affairs advisor to Deng Xiaoping; founder and vice-president of the Institute of American Studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS); and member of the delegation during the Chinese premier Zhao Ziyang's visit to the United States in 1984. He later critiqued authoritarianism and became a proponent of intellectual freedom and liberal democracy.The collection consists of Li Shenzhi's unpublished manuscripts and writings from the 1950s and the 1960s on the Anti-Rightist Movement, the Chinese Cultural Revolution, and Chinese Communist Party members.
Li Shenzhi 李慎之 (1923-2003) was born in 1923 in Wuxi, Jiangsu Province. Between 1941 and 1945 he studied consecutively in Yenching University in Beijing and St. John's University in Shanghai before relocating to Yengching University in Chengdu. During this period, he participated in underground organizations of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). Shortly after the end of the Second Sino-Japanese War, Li joined the CCP-sponsored Xinhua News Agency as an editor. During the Korean War (1950-53), Li was assigned to create warfare propaganda to persuade Chinese POWs to return to China. Between 1954 and 1957, Li served as a secretary for Chinese premier Zhou Enlai in foreign affairs. In 1957, he was purged by Chairman Mao Zedong during the Anti-Rightist Movement due to his advocacy for democracy within the CCP. In 1973, as relations between China and the United States improved as a result of President Richard Nixon's historic visit to China, Li was recalled to Beijing to partake in the CCP's task force on international studies. In 1979, Li served as Deng Xiaoping's advisor on American affairs, accompanying Deng to visit the United States. Shortly thereafter, he was put in charge of founding the Institute of American Studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS), China's premier think tank, designed to undertake comprehensive research into all aspects of the United States. In 1984, Li was a member of the delegation that accompanied Chinese Premier Zhao Ziyang to the United States. In 1985, Li was appointed vice-president of the CASS and continued to serve as the head of the Institute of American Studies. He retired in 1989 and died in Beijing in 2003. Li has been widely acclaimed by Chinese intellectuals for his liberal-democratic credentials and his powerful criticism of authoritarianism.
2 manuscript boxes, 1 oversize box (2.33 Linear Feet)
For copyright status, please contact the Hoover Institution Library & Archives.
The collection is open for research; materials must be requested in advance via our reservation system. If there are audiovisual or digital media material in the collection, they must be reformatted before providing access.