Xi Jinping and His New Zhijiang Army: A Perspective from Social Network Analysis
Global Politics Review
Vol. 6, no. 1-2 (2020): 20-36.
GPR ID: 2464-9929_v06_i1-2_p020
Received: November 27, 2019. Accepted: March 10, 2020. Published: April 10, 2020.
ABSTRACT: Authoritarian regimes’ internal and external behavior are characterized by their leaders’ traits and behaviours. Building upon the achievements of elite studies in recent years, this paper analyzes the relationships among cadres who hold high posts within the Chinese Communist Party in the Xi Jinping era. The term “New Zhijiang Army” refers to the people who Xi trusts and are closely associated with. The paper first chooses four cadre-selected congresses from 2007 to 2018, through which Xi rose to power from a member of the standing committee of the Political Bureau to his investiture as president without term limits. The paper analyses the figures of the party, government, and military in these four congresses and indicates the characteristics of officials who emerged alongside Xi Jinping. Finally, the paper sheds light on the relationships between Xi and his “army”, and offers a new perspective on future developments in China.
Keywords: China, Xi Jinping, Chinese Communist Party, elite studies, network analysis.