Read e-book online A Bitter Revolution: China's Struggle with the Modern World PDF

By Rana Mitter

ISBN-10: 0192803417

ISBN-13: 9780192803412

China this present day is poised to play a key position at the global degree, yet within the early 20th century the placement used to be very diverse. during this robust new examine glossy China, Rana Mitter is going again to a pivotal second in chinese language heritage to discover the origins of the painful transition from pre-modern to trendy international.
Mitter identifies may possibly four, 1919, because the defining second of China's twentieth-century heritage. On that day, outrage over the Paris peace convention prompted an unlimited pupil protest that led in flip to "the could Fourth Movement." simply seven years earlier than, the 2,000-year-old imperial approach had collapsed. Now a brand new team of city, modernizing thinkers started to reject Confucianism and standard tradition typically as stumbling blocks within the struggle opposed to imperialism, warlordism, and the oppression of ladies and the terrible. Forward-looking, individualistic, embracing early life, this "New tradition movement" made an enduring effect at the severe a long time that undefined: the Nineteen Forties, with the struggle opposed to Japan and the civil conflict among the Nationalist social gathering and the Communists; the Nineteen Sixties, with the unusual, probably anarchic global of Mao Zedong's Cultural Revolution; and the Nineteen Eighties, with the increase of a semi-market economic system opposed to the backdrop of persisted single-party rule and becoming inequality. all through every one of those dramatically various eras, the could four issues persevered, from the madness of the Cultural Revolution to the new romance with space-age technology.
China, Mitter concludes, nonetheless appears looking for a brand new narrative approximately what the rustic is, and what it may develop into. and will four is still a touchstone in that seek.

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Extra info for A Bitter Revolution: China's Struggle with the Modern World

Example text

This book looks at slices of time – broadly speaking, the s, the s, the s, the s, and the turn of the millennium. The societies described in each of these periods are very different, considering that each is only  years from the next. In the s, China had only recently seen the ,-year-old imperial system collapse, and a fragmented series of militarist governments competed with the imperial powers for control over China’s resources. Twenty years later, China was in the midst of a devastating world war 12 :    which killed tens of millions of its citizens.

China was self-confident but not self-contained: culture from central Asian and northern Tungusic civilizations was absorbed willingly on occasion, by force on others. The wonders of the Chinese 26 :    civilization were reported back to the west by travellers: Marco Polo’s famous (though possibly fraudulent) account calls the southern city of Hangzhou ‘Without doubt the finest and most splendid city in the world’. 30 But in the mid-nineteenth century, this changed. China began to fall apart for a variety of reasons: revolutions from within; a growing dissatisfied underclass who resented the wealth of the ruling classes; and, in addition, a violent catalyst, the attacks by the western imperial powers, determined to open China up to trade.

China had developed its first political party, the Nationalists (or Kuomintang), led by Sun Yatsen, which had won a large number of parliamentary seats in China’s first (and last) free and open general election in . But Song Jiaoren, the brilliant young politician tipped as the Nationalist prime minister, was gunned down at Shanghai railway station as he was about to board the train to Beijing to start 35  negotiations with President Yuan Shikai. Agents of Yuan were strongly suspected of having arranged the killing.

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A Bitter Revolution: China's Struggle with the Modern World by Rana Mitter


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