These last ten years have witnessed a remarkable development of Chinese academic writing on International Relations. The late Premier Zhou Enlai had recommended the expansion of such studies in 1964 on his return from a tour of Africa after having found the relevant Chinese expertise weak and ill-informed. But the Cultural Revolution of 1966–1976 not only prevented that development, but along with most other intellectuals those few scholars engaged in the subject were humiliated and persecuted. Since 1977, in common with the other social sciences, International Relations has begun to flourish. Although it is a fairly new independent subject of study more than five hundred scholars are engaged in a variety of research institutes and several universities offer courses in it. As in the other social sciences, research in International Relations is carried out under the general guidelines of serving China's long term policies of modernization and the open door.