Power of Freedom

Hu Shih’s Political Writings
Chih-p’ing Chou and Carlos Yu-Kai Lin, Editors
Collection of several previously unpublished works from one of China’s most important scholars in the 20th century


Dr. Hu Shih (1891–1962) was one of China’s top scholars and diplomats and served as the Republic of China’s ambassador to the United States during World War II.  As early as 1941, Hu Shih warned of the fundamental ideological conflict between dictatorial totalitarianism and democratic systems, a view that later became the foundation of the Cold War narrative.  In the 1950s, after Mao’s authoritarian regime was established, Hu Shih started to analyze the development and nature of Communism, delivering a series of lectures and addresses to reveal what he called Stalin’s “grand strategy” for facilitating the International Communist Movement.

For decades—and today to a certain extent—Hu Shih’s political writings were considered sensitive and even dangerous.  As a strident critic of the Chinese Communist Party’s oligarchical practices, he was targeted by the CCP in a concerted national campaign to smear his reputation, cast aspersions on his writings, and generally destroy any possible influence he might have in China.  This volume brings together a collection of Hu Shih’s most important, mostly unpublished, English-language speeches, interviews, and commentaries on international politics, China-U.S. relations, and the International Communist Movement.  Taken together, these works provide an insider’s perspective on Sino-American relations and the development of the International Communist Movement over the course of the 20th century.
Chih-p’ing Chou is Professor Emeritus of East Asian Studies at Princeton University.

Carlos Yu-Kai Lin is Assistant Professor of Linguistics and Translation at the City University of Hong Kong.

Praise / Awards

  • “A good and essential record of Hu Shih’s role as public intellectual in the United States, his participation in the American discussion of international affairs during the Second World War, and the decade and a half following it.  Nobody who reads through the pieces in this anthology thoughtfully will come away from the experience unfulfilled.”
    —David Curtis Wright, University of Calgary
  • “The essays collected here offer a very clear picture of Hu Shih’s contribution to the English-speaking world’s understanding of the modern Chinese political situation, traditional Chinese thought values, and China’s place in the world.”
    —Josephine Chiu-Duke, University of British Columbia
  • "This book fills a lacuna for specialists on Hu Shih and historians of Sino-US relations."

Product Details

  • 6 x 9.
  • 384pp.
Available for sale worldwide

  • Hardcover
  • 2022
  • Available
  • 978-0-472-07526-3

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  • $85.00 U.S.

  • Paper
  • 2022
  • Available
  • 978-0-472-05526-5

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  • $39.95 U.S.

  • Open Access
  • 2022
  • Available
  • 978-0-472-90361-0

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  • Hu Shih; Cold War; Word World Two (WWII); U.S.-China relations; Chinese Communism; Authoritarianism; Totalitarianism; Freedom of speech; Democracy; Democratic alliance; World government; League of Nations; Woodrow Wilson; Franklin D. Roosevelt; Diplomatic history; Comparative politics; Sino-American relations; Western political thought; Political theory; International relations; International politics; May Fourth movement; May Fourth new culture movement; Chinese tradition; Chinese philosophy; Confucianism; Chiang Kai-shek; Nationalist government; Kuomintang (KMT); Chinese Communist Party (CCP); Mao Zedong; Joseph Stalin; Benito Mussolini; Second Sino-Japanese War; Resistance War; Free China; Manchuria; Mukden Incident; exile