A Compelling Journey from
Peking to Washington
For more photos of Dr. Chi Wang with Chinese
and American leaders, please click
will be in English. To see a description in Chinese, please
The Renwen Society presents a special lecture and
book signing by Dr. Chi Wang on May 5, 2012, 3-5 pm.
Dr. Wang will speak about
his book, A Compelling Journey from Peking to Washington:
Building a New Life in America. Wang’s father was
a prominent Chinese government official and
general in the Nationalist government. The
book depicts Wang’s extraordinary childhood
living through one of the most turbulent periods in Chinese
including the Japanese occupation of Hong Kong and mainland
China and the Chinese civil war.
In 1949, Wang left China to study in the
United States, traveling though mainland China, Taiwan, and
Hong Kong during the final days of the Chinese civil war.
After graduation from college, however,
his life took a very different turn. He could
not return to China as planned due to the outbreak of the
Korean War. Over twenty years would pass before he would
again see his siblings and the rest of his family.
In the United States, he started
working on an archives project for the Library of Congress,
which would lead to an unexpected career that spanned nearly
half a century of helping the Library build up its Chinese
collections. During Wang’s tenure as head of the Chinese
section, the Chinese Collection grew from 300,000 to over a
million volumes. As one of the largest centers for China
studies outside Asia, it helped meet growing demand for
information and materials on China from Americans.
In 1969, Wang became a professor
of history and U.S.-China relations at Georgetown
University, where he still teaches today. During this time,
he became part of a growing movement to help reestablish
ties between China and America. In 1972, Wang was invited by
the Chinese government to help arrange cultural exchanges
between China and America. He became one of the first
Americans allowed to visit China after Nixon’s historic trip
to mainland China ended twenty-five years of isolation. On
his trip to China, Wang successfully negotiated an exchange
agreement between the Library of Congress and the National
Library of Peking and subsequent agreements with major
Chinese academic libraries. In 1995, he founded the
U.S.-China Policy Foundation, and today is still working
there on what has been a lifelong goal to bring China and
America closer together. To see a more detailed bio of Dr.
Wang, please click here.
Admissions: free for Renwen
members and $5 for non-members. Advance registration
and payment are requested. To
register for this lecture, please click
here (Lecture Code: 050512). For inquiries, please call (646) 912-8861
Institute, 125 East 65th Street, New York, NY