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

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

by Rana Mitter
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ISBN-10:
019280605X
ISBN-13:
9780192806055
Pub. Date:
08/25/2005
Publisher:
Oxford University Press

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Overview

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


In this powerful new look at modern China, Rana Mitter goes back to a pivotal moment in Chinese history to uncover the origins of the painful transition from pre-modern to modern. Mitter identifies May 4, 1919, as the defining moment of China's twentieth-century history. On that day, outrage over the Paris peace conference triggered a vast student protest that led in turn to "the May Fourth Movement." Just seven years before, the 2,000-year-old imperial system had collapsed. Now a new group of urban, modernizing thinkers began to reject Confucianism and traditional culture in general as hindrances in the fight against imperialism, warlordism, and the oppression of women and the poor. Forward-looking, individualistic, and embracing youth, this "New Culture movement" made a lasting impact on the critical decades that followed. Throughout each of the dramatically different eras that followed, the May 4 themes persisted, from the insanity of the Cultural Revolution to China's recent romance with space-age technology.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780192806055
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Publication date: 08/25/2005
Series: Making of the Modern World Series
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 378
Product dimensions: 9.20(w) x 6.10(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author



Rana Mitter is Lecturer in the History and Politics of Modern China at the University of Oxford, and a Fellow of St. Cross College. In addition to many books and journal articles, Mitter has contributed to documentaries on the History Channel and is involved in a forthcoming documentary on Kublai Khan.

Table of Contents



Prologue
Tian'anmen Square, 1989
1. Flashpoint - Beijing, May Fourth, 1919
2. Saving the Nation: the era of the May Fourth Movement
3. Erasing the past: iconoclasm and the destruction of tradition
4. Ugly Chinamen and Dead Rivers
5. Making a stand: the lure and limits of democracy
Epilogue
The Legacy of May Fourth

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