Crosses, Hammers, And Sickles: Sino-vatican Relations Between 1949 And 1989

Zhang, Boyao

In July 2011, Pope Benedict XVI publicly condemned the ordination of Father Paul Lei Shiyin as Bishop, an appointment the Vatican had not previously approved. The conflict between Beijing and the Holy See over the appointment of Chinese bishops dates back to 1951, when China and Vatican broke diplomatic relations. This paper questions why the Vatican and the People’s Republic of China failed to establish normal relations between 1949 and 1989.
The literature on the diplomatic relations between the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and the Holy See is sparse. Beatrice Leung’s monograph SinoVatican Relations: Problems in Conflicting Authority 1976-1986 is the most authoritative account of SinoVatican relations after 1949. Leung analyzes the major developments of Beijing-Vatican relations in terms of a clash of authority between the Pope and the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).

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The Journal of Politics and Society

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Helvidius Group
Helvidius Group of Columbia University
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April 25, 2016