Tiananmen Archive

Chancellor Charles E. Young, in the immediate aftermath of the Tiananmen incident of June 1989, established a university committee to create the China Democracy Movement and Tiananmen Incident Archival Project.

The faculty and staff committee was chaired by then-director of the Center for Pacific Rim Studies, Professor Lucie Cheng (Sociology). Over the next five years the university invested some $50,000 to enable faculty and student researchers to assemble a broad collection of documents on the events of 1989 and their aftermath. Professor James Tong (Political Science) made important contributions to this work over a number of years, and collected many documents himself in Hong Kong. The final collection ran to more than 11,000 pages.

In 1999 the newly established UCLA Asian Pacific Monograph Series undertook to complete the catalog of the collection, which was its first title (see The China Democracy Movement and Tiananmen Incident: Annotated Catalog of the UCLA Archives, 1989-1993). The catalog is available from the Monograph Series and the collection itself is in process of being microfilmed to make it available to researchers at the UCLA Richard C. Rudolph East Asian Library.

The Collection

Among the documents in the archive are:

  1. Hundreds of flyers distributed in Beijing and other major Chinese cities
  2. Regional and local Chinese newspapers published in May, June, and July 1989
  3. Thousands of pages of faxes and e-mail messages (in hard copy) sent from China to the West in the weeks and months following the incident
  4. Hundreds of miscellaneous letters, notes, etc., originating both in China and in the West, dealing with the incident
  5. A large collection of small-circulation exile publications founded by former leaders of the China Democracy in the United States and Europe which follow the lives of the particpants for years after the events.
  6. Several volumes of email, particularly the national email publication China News Digest.
  7. A lengthy bibliography of newspaper and journal articles and books published in the West on the incident


The collection is housed in the UCLA East Asian Library. The Library plans to prepare a microfilm edition of the collection.

Published: Monday, February 03, 2003