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Mr. Hao Chen

Mr. Hao Chen

Ph.D. Candidate in Modern East Asian History

Faculty of History
West Road

Cambridge, United Kingdom CB3 9EF
Office Phone: +44(0) 7393 829963


Hao is currently a Ph.D. candidate in the Faculty of History under the supervision of Dr. Barak Kushner and Prof. Andrew Preston. His dissertation will examine how the People's Republic of China (PRC) and Taiwan competed with each other for representational supremacy of the "real/legitimate" China by engaging with the Cold War "Third Forces" of Asia between 1949 and 1971. The Cold War "Third Force" is defined through two categories. One is the Sino-sphere political appeal (mostly in Hong Kong) to challenge the pre-eminence of the "two Chinas" struggle and advocate liberal democracy as a third alternative of prospective China representation. The other is the Afro-Asian solidarity movement pushed by newly independent Asian and African countries in order to overcome the shadows of US-Soviet bipolarity in the Cold War, including the Bandung Conference, the Asian-African People's Solidarity Organization (AAPSO), and the Second Asian-African Conference. This project will focus on how both Beijing and Taipei confronted and managed these movements as part of their rivalry for recognition of their respective legitimacies. Through analyzing the China-Taiwan case, Hao hopes his research will contribute to rethinking what the concept of the "Cold War" means, and what it means specifically in reference to post-World War II East Asia. 

Prior to his doctoral study in Cambridge, Hao completed his Bachelor's degree in the United International College at Hong Kong Baptist University, the first liberal arts school in China which was established as an experiment in Chinese higher education reform. He later pursued a research degree at the Master's level at McGill University under the supervision of Dr. Lorenz Luthi, the author of the Sino-Soviet Split: Cold War in the Communist World. His Master's thesis focuses on how Nationalist China pursued parallel partnerships with both Nazi Germany and the United States during the early Second Sino-Japanese War between 1937 and 1941. In the summer of 2014, Hao came to Taiwan as a visiting research student at the Humanities Research Centre at National Chengchi University in Taipei, and conducted extensive research in Academia Sinica, Academia Historica and Kuomintang (KMT) Party History Institute. 

Research Interests

Twentieth century political and international history of China, Taiwan and Hong Kong, with emphasis on the post-1945 era; Cold War international history; the history of Japanese imperial disintegration in post-World War II East Asia; the historiography of World War I and World War II. 


Michaelmas 2017-Lent 2018   Teaching Assistant for "J6: Japanese History", Department of East Asian Studies, Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, United Kingdom. 

Winter 2015   Teaching Assistant for “HIST 338: Twentieth Century China” , Department of History, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.            

Winter 2015   Guest lecturer for “HIST 338: Twentieth Century China” , Department of History, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.            

Other Professional Activities

May 30th-June 2nd, 2017   "Contesting Representational Legitimacy among Cold War 'Third Forces' of Asia: The Chinese Cross-Strait Rivalry, 1949-1971", Conference presentation in the Summer Institute for Conducting Archival Research (SICAR), History and Public Policy Program, co-organized and convened by Dr. Gregg Brazinsky and Dr. Christian Ostermann, Washington D.C., USA. 

April 24th, 2017   "Chiang Kai-shek and the Early Development of the Whampoa Clique, 1925-1930", Graduate Research Day Student Conference, Faculty of History, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom.  

January 14-15th, 2017   Participant and Speaker, the 3rd Toshiba Foundation-fund conference, The Media and How It Shapes History in East Asia, co-organized and convened by Dr. Barak Kushner and Professor Rana Mitter, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom.

December 9-12th, 2016   Participant and Speaker, European Research Council (ERC)-funded conference, The Reconstruction of East Asia, 1945-65, organized and convened by Dr. Barak Kushner, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom.          

November 6th, 2015   “Opening Remarks: China’s Forgotten World War II”, McGill Society of China Studies Symposium “World War II:  China’s Forgotten War,” McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.                        

January 31st, 2014     “Negotiating for Alliance: Republican China’s Relations with Nazi Germany and the United States, 1937-1941” , Graduate Student Conference, “Empire and Decolonization", Department of History, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.            

November 15th, 2013   “The Ironic Struggle for China’s Modernity: Warlords in Republican China during the 1920s” , McGill Society of China Studies Symposium “China’s Revival", McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.                                      

November 2015-September 2016 Travel Consultant/Advisor, Sinorama Holidays Inc., Markham, Ontario, Canada.   

Augutst-November 2015 Part-time Instructor of Chinese Language and Culture, Chinese School at Vanier College, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

June-August 2012 Administrative Assistant Internship, Heartland Alliance Human Needs & Human Rights, Chicago, USA.

June-August 2011 Personal Assistant Internship, Zhaoqing Institute of Business and Technology, Zhaoqing, Guangdong, China.                                                                                                                                                                                                         


  • International History
  • Imperial History
  • Academic related

Key Publications

"The Herculean Task: the Kuomintang’s Attempt to Salvage Its Friendship with Hitler, 1937-1941," Asian Education and Development Studies, Special Issue: Courting China in Twentieth Century, Fall 2017, 20pp (Forthcoming).