How Does the Foreign Audience Respond to China’s Cultural Exchange Programs Abroad: Survey Evidence from the 2011 Terracotta Army Exhibition in Montreal

  •  Wenbin Jiang    
  •  Caiwu Fu    


Considerable negative views of China’s rise persist in international opinion, highlighted by criticisms of China’s domestic and foreign affairs and concerns of “China threat”. To tell China's story to the world, Chinese leaders pay particular attention to international cultural exchanges. How does the foreign public respond to China’s cultural exchange program abroad? During the 2011 Terracotta Army exhibition in Montreal, this survey finds a majority of respondents view China’s oversea cultural programs positively and favours the idea that cultural exchanges help to improve China's international image, while a substantial number of audience holds either neutral or unfavourable attitudes towards China’s international image and lacks knowledge about China and Chinese culture. This paper suggests that China’s international cultural exchanges should be maintained and enhanced with a two-pronged approach to provide foreign public with a convincing source of learning about both ancient Chinese culture and contemporary Chinese experience and hence, reduce their doubts and concerns about China’s development.

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