China Tells Foreign Law Professors to Prove They’ll Obey Xi


  • Law school checks to ensure courses adhere to Xi doctrine
  • China has been curbing academic freedom in recent years

China appears to be requiring foreign law professors to submit their syllabuses to ensure they are following a doctrine President Xi Jinping has been pressing across the nation’s society to cement his control.

James Zimmerman, a media lawyer with law firm Perkins Coie, posted a document on Twitter that he said law professors at a university in Beijing were required to fill out and submit to superiors before classes started.

The document’s “General Objectives” is filled out for the educators, saying: “Guided by Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, this course places a focus on every aspect of students’ morality education.”


It said that students will “acquire knowledge and skills,” adding: “Besides, students will understand and practice the core values of Chinese socialism, and learn to combine personal fulfillment with social and national development.”

Zimmerman confirmed to Bloomberg News that he posted the document, saying he got it from a foreign law professor in China. He declined to provide more information about its origins.

He said the syllabus requirement for the educators was first rumored in the fall, and “the template I posted was recently circulated to the professors.”

It wasn’t immediately clear if the requirement also was being applied to professors in other subjects.