Week 07: Mar. 22 – Mar. 28

Check you have completed the assignments for Week 6!

Table of Contents

Background

The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is this year 100 years old! (“Happy birthday!” ?) To understand the future trajectory of Chinese history, we need to understand what communism really means, not the caricature its opponents have made of it; and we need to know how leading figures in China understood (and still understand) the dynamics of history. Unfortunately those are very complex sets of ideas, and we could dedicate an entire semester to those topics alone, so we have to make do with the basics of the basics.

Chinese thinkers based their views on history on Marx and Engels’ interpretations. The rigid adherence to Marxist framework of history creates all sorts of problems, so I suggest we don’t follow it as historians, but instead focus on it as a way to understand the mindset of the people who became communists at this time. We can engage with the broader conceptual questions (e.g. who has power? does it change how power is defined, e.g. from holding land to holding money? does that group change? What influence does that have on economy, foreign relations, society, culture or how do these areas influence ideas and sources of power?), but let’s not try to break our head over the moment when China moved from “feudal” to “bourgeois” society, because those models constrict rather than help. Keep this in mind for future weeks, it will come back – like the specter that haunted Europe!

As we move into the twenties and thirties, two main visions of state and society, and two political parties began to dominate the narrative: the Nationalist Party (Guomindang) and Communists, and the fragmentation of the state continued, to the point that this week and next week we remain in the same time-frame. Because they were constantly in conflict with each other you’ll see them running around in both weeks. Keep your eye on the timeline (part 3) and the map (layer for Part 3), and keep notes for yourself, too.

Sun Yatsen’s dream of a Chinese Republic under a single unified leadership was a distant dream when he passed away in 1925. Leadership of the party went to Chiang Kaishek (Mandarin: Jiang Jieshi), a military man who leaned more to the right, and had a severe distrust of the communists with whom Sun had worked together. Yet Chiang saw the use of the “united front” with the communists, for as long as it suited him to try and get rid of the warlords who had carved up the republic “like a melon.” In 1927, he turned against them.

Why does this matter? This is the origin of the bloody and now century-long conflict between the two parties, both of which claim to be the true heir to Sun’s legacy. Clearly this won’t be easy to resolve. At the same time, the territorial integrity of the Republic was still compromised: the foreign concessions (result of the various nineteenth-century wars) still existed, and Japan would soon begin to occupy parts of the northeastern provinces, known as Manchuria, to protect its railway concessions, part of its imperialist ambitions, which set it on the road to WWII in East Asia. Bear in mind that at the same time, it already controlled the Korean peninsula, and Taiwan.

Taiwan had been ceded to Japan in the Treaty of Shimonoseki following the first Sino-Japanese war in 1895. You can follow in Exploration Pack 3 how it has fared since then. (Spoiler alert: not too great. Preview/shameless plug: if you want to know more about Japan in Korea, keep an eye out for HST259, the Korean history course, on offer in Spring 2022!)

Readings

Basic Set

  • Chapter 12 summary (wrong – that was last week!)
  • Chapter 13 summary
  • Chapter 14 summary
  • Slide Deck (Google drive link)
  • Marx, Karl and Friedrich Engels. The Communist Manifesto: The sesquicentennial edition with an introduction by Martin Malia. Signet Classic. Penguin, New York, 1998. (PDF) #communism #ideology #government
    • I’ve given you the whole thing, but check for the sections I indicated with red brackets that (I think) are useful to understand what made communism attractive to early twentieth-century Chinese intellectuals.
  • OPTIONAL EXTRAS:
    • RSA Animate. “David Harvey: Crises of Capitalism – A Cognitive Whiteboard Animation”, Youtube video. URL: https://youtu.be/p8xEVjRiIeM #communism #ideology
      • 11 mins, explaining the 2008 crisis, but using a Marxist view of the economy. The underlying principles also work for earlier periods, including the early twentieth century. Can you see what made it attractive to certain Chinese intellectuals
    • Moïse Edwin E. Modern China: A History Third ed. Harlow, England: Pearson/Longman, 2008.
    • Dillon, Michael. China: A Modern History. London: I.B. Tauris, 2010.
    • Wasserstrom, Jeffrey N, and Maura Elizabeth Cunningham. China in the 21st Century : What Everyone Needs to Know. 2nd ed. What Everyone Needs to Know.Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013.
      • Ebook Trexler
      • This provides brief notes on historical background, you’ll find section 3 “Revolutions and Revolutionaries” has the information you need in Question and Answer form: “What is the May 4th Movement”; “What was the First United Front”, etc.
    • Video lectures with Prof. Mullaney: playlist “Republican China”, videos 5-10.

Then pick one of the following Exploration Packs

Exploration Pack 1: Plain Textbook

  • Spence, Jonathan D. The Search for Modern China. Third ed. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 2013.
    • Chapters 13 and 14 (“A Road is Made” and “The Fractured Alliance”)
  • 13.1: Chen Duxiu: “Call to Youth”; and 14.4–14.6“Purging the Communists: Three Documents.” In The Search for Modern China: A Documentary Collection. Third ed. Edited by Janet Chen et. al. W. W. Norton & Company, 2014.
    • Chen Duxiu: PDF #foreignrelations #japan #activism #politics #primary-source
    • Purging the Communists: PDF #government #authoritarianism #nationalism #primary-source

Exploration Pack 2: May Fourth Movement and beginnings of Communism in China

  • Sun Yatsen. “The Three People’s Principles” in Sources of Chinese Tradition: From 1600 through the Twentieth Century, Vol. 2, 202-205. Edited by Wm. Th. de Bary and R. Lufrano. Columbia Univ. Press, 2001. (PDF) #ideology #politics #nationalism #primary-source
    • Sun’s legacy is claimed by both the Nationalist (Guomindang or GMD /Kuomintang or KMT) party and the Communist Party (CCP)
  • Lu Xun, “Diary of a madman”. Translated by William A. Lyell. In Diary of a Madman and Other Stories. University of Hawaii Press, Honolulu, 1990. (PDF) #literature #modernism #art #primary-source

Exploration Pack 3: Taiwan

  • Caroline, Ts’ai Hui-yu. “Shaping Administration in Colonial Taiwan, 1895–1945.” In Taiwan Under Japanese Colonial Rule, 1895-1945: History, Culture, Memory, Edited by Ping-hui Liao and David Der-wei Wang, 97-121. New York: Columbia University Press, 2006.
    • What were the obstacles Japan had to overcome in ruling its first foreign colony? Was it successful? Why (not)? Where could Taiwanese people find ways to resist the colonization?
    • This type of text tries to convince you of an argument: can you summarize in three sentences what the “pitch” is the author makes? What do they want you to accept as true? –> that will help you through the text.
  • 14.1: “A Patient Named Taiwan.” In The Search for Modern China: A Documentary Collection. Third ed. Edited by Janet Chen et. al. W. W. Norton & Company, 2014.
    • PDF #taiwan #colonization #nationalism #primary-source
    • This piece was written by a Taiwanese-Chinese person, in Japanese.
  • A Chat with the Governor-General About Discontinuing Chinese Columns in Daily Newspapers.” In The Columbia Sourcebook of Literary Taiwan, edited by Sung-sheng Yvonne Chang, Michelle Yeh and Ming-ju Fan. Columbia Univ. Press, 2014.PDF #taiwan #colonization #cultural-policy #primary-source
    • In this short interview, you read the Japanese view of Taiwan within the greater Japanese empire

Assignments

Peer feedback on post Week 6 (reminder)

3 points, due Monday March 22, by 11.59pm.

Ok, you know the drill, and why reading other’s posts is good for you… Below you find links to four blog posts from your fellow students. If one of the websites is your own, or it is twice the same person’s, refresh the page, and you should get new sites.

  • Post 1:
  • Post 2:
  • Post 3:
  • Post 4:

Leave feedback, questions, thoughts, insights about the contents of the posts of your fellow students using Hypothes.is group HST271. You can ask for clarifications, point out similarities and differences with the material you covered, or with your interpretation. This should encourage you to nose around in the other materials you did not read in the first round.

Use the “Architect’s Model” of giving feedback, and engage with concrete issues. Go beyond “Yeah, I agree,” “I like” or “I think the same”, and instead explain why you have that reaction, or if you disagree, you can try to persuade the original poster of your idea or interpretation.

Use tags in Hypothes.is: question: If you have a question (obvious); answered: if you gave an answer to a question; info: if you provide more information, looking up additional facts, drawing on knowledge from other classes; and other tags you can think of. This will help us to navigate more quickly to the questions that still need answering.

Remember that Hypothes.is allows for hyperlinks, e.g. to materials that support your argument, or you can include pictures (memes! [yes, there she is again]), videos etc. that help the original poster to learn more.

When you’ve commented on four posts, read this declaration carefully, and then fill out the Canvas quiz to collect your points.

Declaration
– I commented on four fellow students’ initial posts on the readings from Week 6, using the group HST271.
– I made sure to leave substantial comments that move the discussion forward and help to create better insights, and go beyond a “nice” or “great”.
– I left comments that I would like to receive myself: thoughtful, helpful, kind, but also pointing out errors so they can be fixed.

Blog post week 7

5 points, due by Thursday, March 25, 11.59pm.

Write a blog post exploring themes or ideas based on your reading. You do not need to have all the answers. In fact, learning to ask good analytical or research questions is a skill you can develop during the semester.

  • Length: approx. 400 words. excl. list of materials consulted.
  • Add the list of materials consulted at the end of the post, in Chicago notes and bibliography style.
    • TOP TIP: Just copy the bibliography information from the Reading list here.
  • Add the words “Week 7” in the title (please use this exact phrase, or it trips up the filter I created to have your posts show up in the blog stream. No #, no seven, no nothing. Just exactly Week 7. Thanks!)
  • Indicate in your post which Exploration Pack you chose.
  • Including an image, and make sure to add a caption with the source/credit.
  • Post on your website, and add to the category hst271.

When you’re done, read this declaration carefully and then fill out the Canvas quiz to collect your points.

Declaration
– I wrote a post of approximately 400 words in response to the readings.
– I included the bibliographic references for the materials I used for my post.
– I indicated which Exploration Pack I chose.
– I included an image, and I provided a caption and credit (source) for the image.
– I use the words Week 7 in the title, and added the post to category hst271

Meeting with instructor:

as described in the syllabus: First of two mandatory meetings with instructor (video or voice-only), either individually or in a group of maximum three students: pass/fail

This is a chance for you to check in with me individually or in a small group of maximum three students total, so I get to know you a little bit better and what motivates you in this course.

This is a brief conversation, no need to over-prepare. Topics we can touch on include
– how the course is going so far, what you are learning (but maybe did not expect to)
– what you find a bit more difficult
– what you would like to do differently
– what your goals are for the rest of the semester, or intermediate goals for the course

It is really up to you to guide the conversation. Count on 15 min. max. Make an appointment using Google calendar, or drop by during Get Stuff Done Club (Wed. and Thu 2-3 PM). I’m ok with appointments between 8am and 6pm. If you work a full time job during those hours, contact me for a different solution.

This is the last week this assignment is available!

Show and Tell project for Module 2 (Fragmentation and Reform – weeks 4-5-6 (and a half))

  • Brainstorm/project pitch on Google chat room due by Tuesday, March 23, 11.59pm.
  • Project itself: due on Friday March 26., 11.59pm

Find all the details, suggestions for formats, and suggestions for additional materials on this dedicated webpage, as well as information on how and where to submit. (You submit a link on Canvas in this assignment)

Note that the linked page contains many suggestions for alternative assignments + you now need to include a self-assessment and suggested grade. (Yeah, that is hard. The difficulty is the point.)

Peer feedback on post Week 7

3 points, due Monday. March 29 by 11.59pm

Ok, you know the drill, and why reading other’s posts is good for you… Below you find links to four blog posts from your fellow students. If one of the websites is your own, or it is twice the same person’s, refresh the page, and you should get new sites.

  • Post 1:
  • Post 2:
  • Post 3:
  • Post 4:

Leave feedback, questions, thoughts, insights about the contents of the posts of your fellow students using Hypothes.is group HST271. You can ask for clarifications, point out similarities and differences with the material you covered, or with your interpretation. This should encourage you to nose around in the other materials you did not read in the first round.

Use the “Architect’s Model” of giving feedback, and engage with concrete issues. Go beyond “Yeah, I agree,” “I like” or “I think the same”, and instead explain why you have that reaction, or if you disagree, you can try to persuade the original poster of your idea or interpretation.

Use tags in Hypothes.is: question: If you have a question (obvious); answered: if you gave an answer to a question; info: if you provide more information, looking up additional facts, drawing on knowledge from other classes; and other tags you can think of. This will help us to navigate more quickly to the questions that still need answering.

Remember that Hypothes.is allows for hyperlinks, e.g. to materials that support your argument, or you can include pictures (memes! [yes, there she is again]), videos etc. that help the original poster to learn more.

When you’ve commented on four posts, read this declaration carefully, and then fill out the Canvas quiz to collect your points.

Declaration
– I commented on four fellow students’ initial posts on the readings from Week 6, using the group HST271.
– I made sure to leave substantial comments that move the discussion forward and help to create better insights, and go beyond a “nice” or “great”.
– I left comments that I would like to receive myself: thoughtful, helpful, kind, but also pointing out errors so they can be fixed.

Extra Credit Tasks

EC 7-1: Rewrite a post

3 points, due by Sunday March 28, 11.59pm

Unhappy about a post you wrote? Feeling you can do better now than a few weeks ago? Had a bad week and rushed to get it in but now you’re ready to do something you can be proud of? Now you can rewrite a post and get extra credit for it!

  • Pick a post from a previous week and use the comments you received to rewrite it.
  • Add a brief paragraph at the end explaining how you rewrote the post: which comments did you address, how did you go about the process (new blank page vs. tinkering), and what you learned about the process of rewriting.
  • tag the post with extra, and add the word rewrite to the title

Read the following Declaration carefully, and then head on over to Canvas to collect your points in the Declaration Quiz:

Declaration
I selected a post from a previous week and rewrote it, using feedback and insights I gained since writing it.
I added a brief paragraph at the end explaining what I did to rewrite the post, and what I learned about rewriting
I added the tag extra to the post, and added the word rewrite to the title.
I made sure the post is still in the category hst271.

EC 7-2: “Down the Rabbit Hole”

3 points, due by Sunday, March 28, 11.59pm.

Are you curious? Can you spend hours on internet following one link after another trying to get to the bottom of something? Did you know you can now also get some extra credit for this?

Pick a topic, place name, object, book or person connected to our readings from this week, and follow your curiosity “down the rabbit hole”, like Alice in Wonderland. Then share in a blog post with us where you went, and what you found. Your post does not have to be very long: 250 words should work; more is fine if you went on a deep dive, of course. Here’s what to include:

  • What in the course materials this week got you inspired to go down the rabbit hole?
  • Include as hyperlinked text the websites you visited, and what you learned there.
  • Include an image, with caption giving credit for the image.
  • You may also critique the sources you find, in particular if you have your doubts about their reliability, or you come across conflicting interpretations. Which one did you side with, and why?
  • Add the post to category hst271, use the title template “Down the rabbit hole: [insert subject]”, and add the tag extra.

Read the following Declaration carefully, and then head on over to Canvas to collect your points in the Declaration Quiz:

Declaration
I wrote a post about additional materials on the internet I found, starting from a topic connected to course materials from this week.
I included the sites I visited as hyperlinked text, and explained what I learned on these pages.
I included an image, with a caption and credit for the image.
I added the post to the category hst271, used the tag extra, and used the title template “Down the rabbit hole: [insert topic]” for my post.

Where to ask questions

Remember that it is highly likely that you are not the only one with that question. Save me time, and help your fellow students by asking questions where others can see them. If you know the answer to a question, jump in! I can’t be everywhere all the time.

Missing link? Wrong information? Email me!

On to week 8: Coming soon!