In “The New Emperors: Power and the Princelings in China,” author Kerry Brown, noted China expert, journeys deep into the heart of the secretive Communist Party.
China has become the powerhouse of the world economy and home to 1 in 5 of the world’s population, yet we know almost nothing of the people who lead it. How does one become the leader of the world’s newest superpower? And who holds the real power in the Chinese system?
China’s system might have its roots in peasant rebellion but it is now firmly under the control of a power-conscious Beijing elite, almost half of whose members are related directly to former senior Party leaders.
Brown reveals the intrigue and scandal surrounding the internal battle raging between two China’s: one founded by Mao on Communist principles, and a modern China in which ‘to get rich is glorious’.
At the centre of it all sits the latest Party Secretary, Xi Jinping – the son of a revolutionary, with links both to big business and to the People’s Liberation Army. His rise to power is symbolic of the new emperors leading the world’s next superpower.
Kerry Brown is Professor Chinese Politics and Director of the China Studies Centre, University of Sydney.
Team Leader of the Europe China Research and Advice Network (ECRAN) funded by the European Union, he is also an Associate Fellow of Chatham House, London. A member of the British Diplomatic Service from 1998 to 2005, he served as First Secretary, British Embassy Beijing 2000-2003 and was Head of the Indonesia and East Timor Section 2003-2005.
Educated at the universities of Cambridge (MA) and Leeds (PhD), Kerry Brown is a prolific author and sought after international commentator on the Chinese political economy, society and post-1949 history.