Confucius Institutes: Centers for Chinese Cultural Exchange, or Trojan Horses for Propaganda and Penetration of U.S. Colleges?


Manage episode 212438231 series 2327233
By Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio streamed directly from their servers.

Rachelle Peterson is director of research projects at the National Association of Scholars (NAS), an organization dedicated to upholding "the standards of a liberal arts education that fosters intellectual freedom, searches for the truth, and promotes virtuous citizenship." In that position, she has published numerous reports on trends in academia that threaten these values and principles, including one on the subject of this podcast titled Outsourced to China: Confucius Institutes and Soft Power in American Higher Education. Mrs. Peterson's research and commentary has been published in outlets such as the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, National Review Online, and Commentary magazine. She has discussed her research on the Wall Street Journal's Opinion Journal and on numerous radio shows.

Given China's increasing efforts to flex its soft power muscles in the West -- soft power efforts that betray the true nature of the Communist regime -- I had Rachelle on the podcast to discuss perhaps the best illustration of these nefarious efforts in Confucius Institutes. Confucius Institutes present themselves as being dedicated to Chinese cultural exchange and language studies, but Rachelle argues based on her extensive research and study that they are actually Chinese government funded and staffed tools for propaganda, surveillance and allegedly espionage, which also provide the Chinese government substantial leverage over our academic institutions.

What We Discussed
  • What Confucius Institutes are, and how the Chinese government is responsible for controlling virtually every aspect of their operations
  • Confucius Institutes' propagandizing on U.S. college campuses to whitewash Chinese governmental abuses and create a more favorable public image in the West
  • Efforts to stifle academic freedom and criticism of China by way of Confucius Institutes' contracts
  • The ideological and financial reasoning behind why U.S. academic institutions invite Confucius Institutes to their campuses, and the leverage the Institutes provide China
  • Rachelle's chilling findings in extensively examining 12 Confucius Institutes, including the fears of several of those interviewed to go on record
  • Blowback from the Chinese government in the wake of the release of Rachelle's report
  • What makes Confucius Institutes unique relative to other foreign cultural exchange programs on college campuses
  • Current legislative efforts by members of U.S. Congress to scrutinize and counter the efforts of Confucius Institutes
  • And much more
Further Reading

Thanks for Listening!

Check out other episodes, show notes and transcripts at

Subscribe, rate and review: iTunes | Stitcher | Google | YouTube

Follow Ben: Web | Newsletter | Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn

Advertising & Sponsorship Inquiries: E-mail us.


Backed Vibes (clean) Kevin MacLeod ( Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License

17 episodes available. A new episode about every 10 days averaging 44 mins duration .