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The World According to Xi Jinping

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The World According to Xi Jinping

What China’s Ideologue in Chief Really Believes

Foreign Affairs,

5 min read
3 take-aways
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Xi Jinping is putting Marxist-Leninist ideology back into China’s politics and economy.

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Xi Jinping is on a quest to reform China at home and to vault it to leading “a more just international order,” writes policy expert Kevin Rudd in this illuminating commentary. Xi is reviving Marxist-Leninist dogma and reasserting China’s authority in political doctrine, the economy and citizens’ personal liberties. Rudd advises that the United States and the West rethink their approach to a less friendly China that is determined to cast off its history as an oppressed nation and take on its role in establishing a new world order.


Marxist-Leninist ideology informs Xi Jinping’s thinking and governance.

Western analysts have largely ignored the role of Marxism-Leninism in today’s China. After Mao Zedong’s death in 1976, Deng Xiaoping jettisoned theory in favor of a market-based economy, as well as greater involvement in global commerce. His successors followed suit until 2012, when Xi Jinping rose to the top job of Chinese Communist Party (CCP) general secretary. In 2022, Xi solidified his power and attained a first-ever third term as leader of the CCP.

A “new form of Marxist nationalism” now drives Chinese domestic and foreign policy. In Xi’s view, the lessons of China’s history as a subjugated nation inform its aspirations...

About the Author

Kevin Rudd, president of the Asia Society, is a former prime minister and foreign minister of Australia.

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