Cultural Diplomacy Research

Cultural Diplomacy Literature


Edited by Jessica C. E. Gienow-Hecht and Mark C. Donfried

Recent studies on the meaning of cultural diplomacy in the twentieth century often focus on the United States and the Cold War, based on the premise that cultural diplomacy was a key instrument of foreign policy in the nation’s effort to contain the Soviet Union. As a result, the term “cultural diplomacy” has become one-dimensional, linked to political manipulation and subordination and relegated to the margin of diplomatic interactions.

This volume explores the significance of cultural diplomacy in regions other than the United States or “western” countries, that is, regions that have been neglected by scholars so far—Eastern Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. By examining cultural diplomacy in these regions, the contributors show that the function of information and exchange programs differs considerably from area to area depending on historical circumstances and, even more importantly, on the cultural mindsets of the individuals involved.


Introduction: Searching for a Cultural Diplomacy

Introduction: What Are We Searching For? Culture, Diplomacy, Agents and the State
Jessica C. E. Gienow-Hecht

The Model of Cultural Diplomacy: Power, Distance, and the Promise of Civil Society
Jessica C. E. Gienow-Hecht and Mark C. Donfried

Part I. Cultural Relations and the Soviet Union

Chapter 1. VOKS: The Third Dimension of Soviet Foreign Policy
Jean François Fayet
Chapter 2. Mission Impossible? Selling Soviet Socialism to Americans, 1955-1958
Rosa Magnusdottir

Part II. Cultural Diplomacy in Eastern Europe

Chapter 3. Hungarian Cultural Diplomacy between 1957 and 1963 -- Echoes of Western Cultural Activity in a Communist Country
Anikó Macher
Chapter 4. Catholics in Ostpolitik? Networking and Non-State Diplomacy in the Bensberger Polen-Memorandum, 1966-1970
Annika Friedberg

Part III. Cultural Diplomacy in the Middle East

Chapter 5. International Rivalry and Culture in Syria and Lebanon under the French Mandate
Jennifer Dueck
Chapter 6. The United States and the Limits of Cultural Diplomacy in the Arab Middle East, 1945-1957
James R. Vaughan

Part IV. Civil Society and Cultural Diplomacy in Japan

Chapter 7. Difficulties Faced by Japanese Who Tried to Interpret Japanese for the Foreign Audience
Yuzo Ota
Chapter 8. Germany in Europe, Japan and Asia: National Commitments to Cultural Relations within Regional Frameworks
Maki Aoki-Okabe, Toichi Makita, and Yoko Kawamura
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