November 4, 2009
Dr. Çağdaş Üngör
CHINA'S BATTLE OF PERSUASION:
RADIO PEKING'S TURKISH LANGUAGE BROADCASTS DURING THE COLD WAR
Cold War era is traditionally analyzed through the lens of high politics (i.e., diplomatic, military, strategic issues). Yet when confronting the opposite bloc, major players of this conflict, the US, the Soviet Union and the People's Republic of China, opted more for 'cultural persuasion' mechanisms than conventional means. Foreign language publications (books, magazines, pamphlets, etc.) and radio broadcasts have become critical instruments in this battle of persuasion. Throughout the Maoist decades (1949-1976), the PRC regime used its foreign language media to reach peoples who were not reachable by official/diplomatic channels. Radio Peking, which was assigned the task of publicizing China's 'peaceful' foreign policy and the successes of the socialist revolution, launched its Turkish language broadcasts by 1957. Based on the case study of Radio Peking's Turkish section, this study aims to examine China’s challenges in reaching and convincing foreign audiences throughout the Cold War years.