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Title: China-India rivalry and the border war of 1962 : PRC perspectives on the collapse of China-India relations, 1958-62
Author: Ward, Jonathan D. T.
ISNI:       0000 0004 6495 1462
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2016
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After Indian Independence in 1947 and the founding of the People's Republic of China (PRC) in 1949, China and India began a period of friendship and cooperation, leading to the Bandung Conference in 1955 and the declaration of the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence in 1954. Just under a decade later, however, the two new nations were at war in the Himalayas. This thesis examines Chinese views of India as the relationship collapsed between 1958-62, culminating in the China-India Border War of 1962. While much of the current literature argues that the collapse of China-India relations was driven by a territorial dispute in the Himalayas, or by a conflict of interests over the Himalayan region, this thesis aims to widen our understanding of China's view of India during these years, demonstrating that CCP leaders and officials saw India as a comprehensive threat to the PRC, and that India loomed much larger in the early PRC worldview than is generally understood. After examining the periods between 1950-53 and 1954-57, during which the two new nations defined their policies towards one another and began their attempted friendship, this thesis will focus on three core arguments in order to shed light on the years of collapse. First, that the CCP saw India as a threat to the core values of the PRC and to the project of creating a 'New China'. Second, that the CCP saw India as a threat to its international agenda, particularly in Asia and Africa. Third, that the CCP saw India as actively working with both the United States and Soviet Union against the PRC, as the two superpowers competed for influence in India, heightening the threat that India posed. As such, this thesis will argue that CCP leaders and officials viewed India as a comprehensive threat overall, much beyond the border dispute. In doing so, this thesis aims to widen our understanding of China's view of India during these years in which relations rose and fell, and to help to explain India's importance to the early PRC.
Supervisor: Harrison, Henrietta ; Mitter, Rana Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available