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CLS Class Highlight – Chinese Military History

Chinese military history - Great Wall of China

 What class?

Chinese Military History

Why is it cool?

Chinese culture is ancient, vast and an exemplary model of a society containing broad-ranging art forms, including war. Today, this East Asian country stands on the pillars of Communism and the world’s largest active military force. At 2,333,000 personnel, like Chinese culture, their military history is immense and evolutionary, morphing from the earliest empirical dynasties to our modern era. Looking through the lenses of history and theory, Chinese Military History contextualizes the current People’s Liberation Army’s (PLA) motto: “Wèi Rénmín Fúwù,” or “Serve the People.”

Chinese Military History familiarizes students with the PLA and their international role with surrounding countries. For example just within the modern era, the People’s Republic of China (PRC) has dealt with Japan, Britain, Korea, Taiwan, India, Vietnam, the Soviet Union, Afghanistan, Beijing, Mali, South Sudan and more. As a part of their peacekeeping operations, the PRC is a prominent member of the United Nations, sending their PLA to various hotspots around the world. Despite their international presence, however, China remains very poorly understood.

For example, Taiwan is formally called the Republic of China, and Mandarin Chinese is the official language. Taiwan, however, is a constitutional country, free of Communism.

Chinese Military History aims to unravel significant misunderstandings, regarding Chinese political alienations when engaged in academic or other types of deliberations. Students will be able to identify a number of essential features that define: China’s stances on military strategy and tactics; military and political culture throughout historical periods; and an understanding of the historical complexities behind many current events. As Chinese presence in the world remains exponentially greater in both military personnel and population, Chinese Military History helps students grasp a clearer picture of China on a global stage—an understanding they can implement within their own dealings with the world.

See what else is offered by the College of Liberal Studies.

Deah Caldwell
Deah Caldwell is a Future Student Services advisor for the College of Liberal Studies. In 2010, she earned her master’s degree in History from the University of Central Oklahoma. She also contributes to Insight magazine, the CLS blog and CLS web content efforts.

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