East Asia

East Asia 1919-1940
Social & Economic Changes
• Early 20th c. China -- Rapid population
growth, lowering food supply, greedy
landlords, frequent floods
• Powerful in China:
– Landowners
– Wealthy merchants
– Foreigners
Educated Chinese jealous of lifestyle of
Revolution & War
• Defeat to international forces – many
students thought Qing should be
overthrown, China modernized
• 1911 – regional army unit mutinied, Sun
Yat-sen’s Revolutionary Alliance formed,
Sun elected as president of China
• 1912 -- Presidency turned over to General
Yuan Shikai, who ruled as autocrat
• Yuan Shikai wanted to be the next
Emperor of China
Sun Yat-Sen
Warlords & the Guomindang
• Paris peace conference (settlement of
WWI) – Japan allowed to keep control
of former German enclaves in China
• Protests in Beijing and other parts of
China, 1919 – May Fourth Movement
• Regional warlords supported armies
through plunder and arbitrary taxation
The May Fourth Movement
Rejection of Confucianism, traditionalism
Western democracy idealized
Women’s liberation
Simplified Chinese script to increase
• Western-style individualism
Sun Yat-Sen’s comeback
• 1920’s – Sun Yat-Sen organized Guomindang
party along Leninist lines – welcomed members
of the Chinese Communist Party.
• 1927 – Yat-Sen’s successor, Chiang Kai-Shek,
crushed regional warlords
• Chiang split with and betrayed Communist
Party, started top-down industrial modernization
• Chiang’s government full of corrupt opportunists
instead of competent administrators – China
remained poor
ChiangKai Shek
The Manchurian Incident
• 1931 – Ultranationalist, young Japanese
army officers wanted to colonize China
• Junior officers made explosion in
Manchurian railway post excuse to
conquer all of province – Japanese govt.
agreed after fact.
• Heavy industries and railways built,
armament sped up
• At home – government more authoritarian,
assassinations brought generals and
admirals political power
Mao Zedong & Rise of Communists
• Communists main challenge to Chiang
Kai-Shek’s government since betrayal
• Communists fled to Jiangxi in SE China
• Mao Zedong, son of farmer, took
leadership of Communist party in 1920’s
• Wanted peasant, agricultural revolution
(departure from Marxist-Leninist ideology)
• Advocated women’s equality, but top party
positions reserved for men
Mao Zedong
• Son of landlord – but rebelled
against father
• Influenced by Marxist Li Dazhao
• Became leader of CCP during
Long March
The Long March
• Guomindang chased Communists into
• Mao responded w/Guerilla warfare and
policies designed to win peasants over
• 1934 – Communists surrounded in Jiangxi
and forced to flee on The Long March –
6,000 miles on foot
• 1935 – Communists arrive in Shaanxi
much weakened and reduced in number
Chinese communists on the Long March
Women & the Revolution
• Marxism – women as equal
• Improvement of educational opportunities
once in power
• More women entering medicine & other
professions than in Western world
• Equal rights: property holding, marriage &
divorce, authority over children
• Women could be CCP members & officals
Women & the Revolution (cont)
• Other issues ignored: birth control &
domestic violence
• Almost all higher party positions held by