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Surveys reveal positive public attitudes (5)

By Cheng Guangjin and Chen Weihua (China Daily)

08:56, February 10, 2012

(China Daily Photo)

Historical view

It is not surprising that there are different views among the US populace on ties with China. From the beginning, the American perception of China has been divided between "acceptance and rejection, admiration and contempt", said Terry Lautz, a visiting professor at Syracuse University and former vice-president of the Henry Luce Foundation.

Historically, Americans have looked at China's rich history and culture with great fascination, but they also treated a weak and disorganized China with much disdain, he said. "American views of China, whether positive or negative, generally have been constructed on an assumption that American values and powers are superior," Lautz said at a recent seminar in Washington DC.

"The notion that China ought to be just like the US was especially nourished by several generations of American missionaries who had vested interests in creating ties that would bind the two cultures together," he said.

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