British media coverage of the early Cultural Revolution, 1966-1969

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


This chapter examines the British government’s official narrative on the early years of the Cultural Revolution (1966-1969). It explores with a theory-guided approach a thoughtfully composed ‘new’ dataset, based on a retrospective examination of event-related newspaper articles in The Times and The Guardian, complemented by newsreel coverage.

This chapter investigates the causal connection between the media coverage-induced public perception of the Cultural Revolution and the London’s government positioning vis-à-vis the mainland and the developments in the British Crown Colony Hong Kong. The first episode of the Cultural revolution discussed are Red Guards attacks on the British delegation in Beijing and British diplomats in Shanghai and Canton. These attacks were framed as justified symbolic revenge for the postulated suppression and maltreatment of Chinese people in Hong Kong. Anti-British protests and riots in Hong Kong continued and, ultimately, these anti-British moods also mobilized the Chinese community in London. Finally, the chapter excavates some rarely noted dimensions of Sino-British relations and sheds light on the synchronization of Chinese (Red Guard) activities in the mainland, Hong Kong, and Great Britain.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMicro intellectual history through de-central lenses
EditorsChih-yu Shih, Mariko Tanigaki, Tina S. Clemente
PublisherWorld Scientific Publishing
ISBN (Electronic)9789811260919
ISBN (Print)9789811260896
Publication statusPublished - 01 Feb 2023
EventChina Studies Since the End of the Cultural Revolution: Subjects, Scholars, Sites and Themes - Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand
Duration: 20 Nov 202021 Nov 2020

Publication series

NameStudies of China and Chineseness Since the Cultural Revolution
PublisherWorld Scientific Publishing Company


ConferenceChina Studies Since the End of the Cultural Revolution: Subjects, Scholars, Sites and Themes


  • China
  • Cultural Revolution
  • Hong Kong
  • British media
  • Sino-British relations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • History


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