“When you have faults, do not fear to abandon them,” Confucius once said. Apparently, someone extremely powerful has taken the saying to heart, having decided that a 31-foot bronze statue of the ancient Chinese sage that was unveiled near Tiananmen Square four months ago did not belong on the nation’s most hallowed slice of real estate.

March 9, 2011

Late last year, a senior official from the Confucius Institute headquarters in Beijing announced that there were now over 40 million foreign learners worldwide studying Chinese.

If you are an American academician specializing in Asian affairs, you may have noticed that an organization called the "Confucius Institute" has sprung up on a nearby US college campus.

March 7, 2011

The unexpectedly rapid expansion of China’s Confucius Institutes since their inception in 2004 has prompted many to consider them a soft power success story. But such a quick rise is bound to lead to a certain amount of scrutiny...

March 2, 2011

As part of the introduction to our ongoing culture series on Chinese soft power and Confucius Institutes, I’ve already touched on the fact that there’s actually very little connection between the ancient Chinese philosopher Confucius and Confucius Institutes, (although from a branding perspective, the name seems to be working well on various levels).

February 28, 2011

Almost 400,000 learners across 96 countries in 322 Confucius Institutes and 369 Confucius Classrooms are currently being taught the language and culture of China—the Asian nation all eyes are on as it continues its 21st century rise to great power status.

China's campaign to use the soft power of culture to present an appealing face to the world seems to have found an official mascot: Confucius. The 2,500-year-old Chinese theorist, who preached devotion to tradition, has become the first non-revolutionary figure to be honored in Tiananmen Square with a new monumental statue...

There has been an officially sanctioned revival of Confucius in recent years, as authorities have turned to his teachings to reach out to the international community to strengthen China's "soft power" and counter an invasion of Western culture.