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The Fourth Policeman | Erez Manela

  • Harvard Center Shanghai HSBC Building 5F | Shanghai IFC 8 Century Avenue Shanghai (map)

The Harvard Center Shanghai cordially invites you to a talk and reception

The Fourth Policeman: Rethinking Franklin D. Roosevelt’s Vision for China’s Global Role
Erez Manela

It is well known that, during World War II, US President Franklin Roosevelt advocated for a postwar order based on four great powers or “four policemen”: the United States, the Soviet Union, Great Britain, and China. But rarely have historians asked, why did Roosevelt include China among his four policemen? After all, for many decades before the war China was considered only a minor power in the international arena, and during the war itself FDR’s push to include it among the great powers were vigorously opposed by both the British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and the Soviet leader Joseph Stalin. Yet Roosevelt continued to insist on China’s inclusion, and his insistence helped, among other things, to make China a founding, permanent member of the United Nations’ Security Council in 1945. This lecture shows how exploring the reasons behind Roosevelt’s push to elevate China to great power status throws new light on his thinking about China’s significance in the global arena and its place in his vision for postwar world order.



Friday 28 August 2015 | 17:00 - 19:00 

Harvard Center Shanghai
HSBC Building 5F |  Shanghai IFC
8 Century Avenue

Free. Light refreshments will be served.

Seats are limited. If you are interested, kindly email Tracy Qin at [email protected] First come first served. 



Erez Manela (Ph.D., Yale) is Professor of History at Harvard University, where he teaches international history and the history of the United States in the world and serves as Director of Graduate Programs at the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs. His most recent book, co-edited with Robert Gerwarth, is Empires at War, 1911-23 (2014), which recasts World War I as a global war of empires rather than a European conflict among nation-states. His other books include the prize-winning The Wilsonian Moment: Self-Determination and the International Origins of Anticolonial Nationalism (2007) and (as co-editor) The Shock of the Global: The 1970s in Perspective (2010).

Earlier Event: August 22
Mentorship Dinner | Carol Liao