Oneworld to publish book on China's European influence

Oneworld to publish book on China's European influence

Oneworld has scooped a book on the “warning signs” behind China’s influence in Europe and North America from once-censored author Clive Hamilton.

Senior commissioning editor Alex Christofi acquired English language rights for the UK, British Commonwealth and North America to Hidden Hand: Exposing how the Chinese Communist Party is reshaping the world from Isabelle Bleecker at Nordlyset on behalf of Hardie Grant. Random House subsidiary DVA has picked up German rights, while Karakter has acquired Dutch rights.

Hamilton’s previous book Silent Invasion was published by Hardie Grant, after Australian press Allen & Unwin delayed publication in 2017 over fears of a possible retaliation from Beijing. At the time, Hamilton accused the publishers of self-censorship. The follow-up will be co-authored by China scholar Mareike Ohlberg and will be published globally in May 2020.

The synopsis explains: “The book will examine how the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) growing power is changing politics around the world. In engaging and lively prose Hamilton and Ohlberg draw on a wide range of sources including English, German and Chinese-language publications, and insights from experts and inside observers. An eye-opening investigation, it will identify a who’s who of ‘friends of China’ in the West and how the Chinese Communist Party is using them to promote its ambition to become the world’s dominant power.”

Christofi said: “Many of us in the West are only just beginning to understand the extent of China’s efforts to reshape the world in its own image, not just stifling free speech behind the Great Firewall, but in our great democracies. This is a big geopolitical story, and as Hamilton and Ohlberg show, we’ve missed a lot of warning signs.”

Hamilton added: “I was thrilled when Mareike Ohlberg agreed to co-author this new book. As an experienced China scholar, she brings deep insights into the thinking of the CCP and a unique understanding of its influence work in Europe and beyond.”

Hamilton is a professor of public ethics at Charles Sturt University in Canberra, and received an Order of Australia for his contribution to public debate and is the author of eight books. Ohlberg is a research associate at the Mercator Institute for China Studies (MERICS) in Berlin.