Dr. Patrick Mendis, a professor of Public and International Affairs at George Mason University in the U.S， was invited to BAC recently.
He carried on an academic exchange with some professors of the Foreign Language Department with his new book, Commercial Providence: the Secret Destiny of the American Empire. He gave a lecture about the relationship between China and America for the postgraduate students in BAC. Compared the difference and similarity of the philosophy and culture both in China and America, Prof. Mendis focused on the symbols and meanings of the buildings in Washington D.C. and made further illustrations about its influence and function of contemporary government. Uniquely, by comparing Washington D.C. to the Forbidden City, he drew a conclusion from symbolic linguistics and semeiology that there have been so many similar thoughts, ideas and beliefs between Chinese and American people since ancient times, such as checks and balances between wisdom and desire, uses of political power, pursuits of people’s well-being and so on. At last, Mendis answered many questions both from the teachers and students which refer to his purpose of the new book, current politics of the U.S., Sino-US cooperation and economic development, etc. The extensive, imaginative, humorous and illustrated speech has truly widened the listeners’ field of vision.
Prof. Mendis is the vice-president of the Osgood Center for International Studies. He is also an associate professor of diplomacy at Norwich University and a visiting foreign policy scholar at John Hopkins University. He is an adviser of diplomacy at the Obama’s government and Clinton’s. He has visited China for many times and made academic lectures for many schools and research institutes.
Translated by Lou Shimeng
Edited by Hu Yu