Date of Award
Master of Arts
Jame T. Andrews
In response to the People’s Republic of China’s intervention in the Korean War, the United States terminated education exchange programs and detained scientifically and technically trained Chinese students and intellectuals living in America. This response was partly an exigency of the war but was also reflective of the broader Sino-American Cold War. Utilizing archival material from the Truman and Eisenhower Presidential Archives, as well as published government documents, this paper traces the shifting patterns of American thought regarding education exchange and the utility of Chinese intellectuals and argues that the American government politicized Chinese students as early as the remission of the Boxer Indemnity Fund in 1905 but came to actively utilize them during the Cold War in an attempt to wage an intellectual war against the PRC. By retaining Chinese students, the United States hoped to deny China advanced scientific and technical information. It also finds that the pressures of constraining a large cohort of stateless individuals, whose technically illegal residence in the United States placed considerable administrative and financial burdens on the American government, led, in part, to enactment of immigration reforms during the early to mid-1950s.
Waldrop, Nick, "Educating the enemy: Chinese students and the Sino-American Cold War, 1948-1955" (2016). Graduate Theses and Dissertations. 15215.