Deutsches Institut für Japanstudien
3-3-6 Kudan-Minami, Chiyoda-ku
Tel: 03 – 3222 5077
Fax: 03 – 3222 5420
The 1979 Sino-Vietnamese War and Japanese Perceptions of the People's Republic of China
January 21, 2004 / 6:30 P.M.
Robert Hoppens, University of Washington
The brief Chinese invasion of Vietnam in February 1979 came at the end of a decade of dramatic change in political relations between Japan and the People’s Republic of China (PRC) during which the two states had managed to forge historically unprecedented close ties. In Japan the war provoked a flurry of articles in the popular press attempting to analyze what the war revealed about the nature of the new Chinese leadership and its implications for Japan.
While the attention ultimately proved short-lived and the war has all but been forgotten in international history, I will examine a number of articles, mostly from Japanese sōgō zasshi, in order to illustrate what I believe are several important historical trends in the way the some Japanese intellectuals perceived the PRC.