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35- Rebirth and Revolution: Nation-Building in East Asia and
Transcript of 35- Rebirth and Revolution: Nation-Building in East Asia and
In Vietnam, the second emperor Minh Mang (1820-1841) arose. Mang was extremely passionate about his knowledge towards Confucianism. he also believed that he had an immense knowledge in Chinese script, that he criticized the brushwork of the emperor at the time who was a Manchu descendant. Mang saw the Catholic Jesuits in Vietnam as a threat and began to persecute them. The French also saw him as a threat and began to intervene deeper. By the 1890s, Vietnam was under French rule. France wanted to make Vietnam as profitable colony. Peasants in the North had little land to gain money from so it was understandable when they couldn't pay French taxes and the required opium and alcohol each villager had to buy. Many left to work in mines established by the French and the Chinese. This, however, was no relief because they were treated as slaves. Peasants had no food to eat, even though they were the world's major rice exporter.
Monday, March 24, 2014
Vol XCIII, No. 311
Main Events/Theme of the chapter
Both China and Vietnam got rid of their social classes.
Mass-oriented schooling and scripts simplified scripts that promoted literary got replaced by developed education and writing skills.
Women had more rights; they improved their legal rights and position in the families, and got more opportunities.
Replaced Confucianism with Western-style capitalism for the state ideology; provides the philosophical basis.
Due to changes, China's and Vietnam's civilized life disappeared.
Chinese and Vietnamese revolutionaries had troubles building new societies that reached much of their Confucian past.
Japan and the Pacific Rim didn't go through the same revolutionary changes China and Vietnam did, so that caused them to have traditional societies.
Revolution and economic changes make east Asia a stronger force in world affairs.
Japan, South Korea, and the west became important in the trading system.
Japanese scientific capacity led the world, while China and Japan played roles in space technology.
China became dominant over the global athletics competitions.
East Asia became more active in world affairs.
35- Rebirth and Revolution: Nation-Building in East Asia and the Pacific Rim
Jiang Qing(1914-1991), was Mao's wife and was a big political figure in the Commnuist Party of China. Her husband, Mao Zedong was actually eextremely reliant on her for many things but mainly topics related to women, like the attainment of women's rights. Along with her husband and all his support and resources, Jiang and her husband stopped foot binding, gained rights for women, and opened education and job oportunities for them. In the 1940s, Jiang worked as Mao's secretary and in 1966 she was appointed deputy director of the Central Cultural Revolution Group. She became an actress and went by the name Lán Píng as an actress. She played a major role in the Cultural Revolution and formed an alliance called the "Gang of Four" that was extremely successful up until the death of Mao.
Throughout the Chapter, the evident theme was misfortune and advancement. First of all, advancement pertaining to the west and Japan brought misfortune to others like China and Vietnam. Japan and the west were imperialist powers that colonized areas like China and Vietnam which brought benefits, growth and advancements to them but misfortune, corruption, and defeat. The areas being colonized lost all sense of life prior to their colonization; they struggled to preserve previous customs, religion, and societal structure but very few succeeded which resulted in the loss of principles and structures that existed for over thousands of years like the implementation of Confucianism and specific social classes. In the end, all of the Pacific Rim was affected but the most detriment went toward China and Vietnam while the ones colonizing advanced and got richer. In addition, advancement is shown throughout this chapter in regards to the Pacific Rim; new improvements with industrialization and political reforms that sparked their innovations led to the Pacific Rim being involved with the rest of the world.
Mao was often referred to as chairman Mao because of his claim of being the founder of the People's Republic of China in Beijing. Zedong had a very strong tactic. He believed that in order to gain recognition, he must gain the support of the peasantry, students, intellectuals, and the bureaucrats by social and economic reforms. Some of these reforms included public education, health care, and land splitting. Communism, at this point, was gaining many supporters, because of their rivals', Nationalists, harsh treatment. The Communist party defeated the Nationalists, who then fled to Beijing. At first the Communists in China and the Soviet Union worked together; however, this led to land border disputes between them. Mao Zedong wanted to prove that he now was the global leader of Communism so he showed his strength by defeating India in a border dispute and exploding the first nuclear device in a non-industrial nation. Mao, after "China [became] a land of peasant smallholders", changed his plan and decided that urban workers were the hope of China. He initiated a five-year plan, similar to Stalin's plan, in order to create a more prosperous China. The United States had seen China as a threat when Mao switched tactics. As in the Soviet Union, collective farming was the next step of his plan, which became known as the Mass Line, and took away what farmers harvested. Mao had always distrusted intellectuals, so it came as a surprise when he announced that he wanted to "let a hundred flowers bloom". He encouraged professors, artists, and other intellectuals to criticize his communist regime and to inform him what he can do to improve it. Of course people took the chance and spoke up but instead of taking their criticism into consideration Zedong began banning and imprisoning them. In 1958, he launched the Great Leap Forward, a rapid transformation from an agrarian economy to a communist society through industrialization and collectivization. Peasants, however, began to revolt and resist, which led to the greatest famine in the Communist era. Mao's wife Jiang Qing was able to produce a greater liberty for Chinese women. In fact women were active participants as teachers, nurses, spies, and other jobs. For the rest of his life, he remained the chairman of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China.
After the victory in WWII, many East Asian nations were restructured due to decolonization. A majority of colonial possessions were temporarily reoccupied by Americans and Europeans. Korea became divided between Russian and American occupations. The Phillipines was taken by the U.S. and soon the Pacific Rim states were all tied to the West. Eventually, the Phillipines, Malaya, and Indonesia became independent.
In Japan, the American occupation, which ended in 1952, had altered the political systems. American authorities attempted to Westernize Japan so they disbanded the military forces, decentralized police, removed corrupt officials, released polital prisoners, gave women the right to vote, encouraged labor unions, and abolished Shintoism as the state religion. The economic reforms that were introduced had divided the estates among small farmers. A new constitution gave the parliament total control, guaranteed civil rights, limited the military's strength, and made the emperor a symbolic figurehead. Since Japan lost most of its military, the state's defense was left to the U.S. The Liberal Democratic party was formed with the merging of two other parties. The Liberal Democrat party utilized a political system that resembled oligarchic tendencies from Japanese past. Japan's new political system also included close relations between the government and businesses. In order to control its dense population, the government promoted birth control and abortions. Japan's traditional culture persisted despite outside interventions. In fact, Nationalist writers had to deal with controversial themes to protest change and the incorporation of Western ideas. Economically, Japan was very successful due to government encouragement, educational expansion, and negligible military expenditures. Unlike the Western companies, Japanese unions promoted labor-management cooperation. Employees had many benefits. Women were still contrained by traditions, therefore they were confined to household tasks and child-bearing. When the Liberal Democrat party was replaced because of political corruption, the economic success was disrupted by economic recessions and unemployment.
Korea was divided into the northern Russian-occupied and southern American-occupied sections. North Korea was a Communist state led by People's Democratic Republic of Korea, while South Korea was more of an authoritarian state with the Republic of Korea. When North Korea invaded South Korea, the U.S intervened to help, then China aided North Korea to push back the American forces, but in the end neither side won and Korea remained divided. Even after the war South Korea remained allied to the U.S which resulted in a flourishing economy because of help from U.S. After the military was forced from power, a conservative government was elected. As a result of all attention on economic growth, firms were created by the government. Industrial groups resembled Japanese zaibatsus and had great political influence. Soon Korea's population began to increase rapidly so the government encouraged birth control and emigrations. Despite the increase in per capita income, economic inequalities continued.
When the Communists defeated the Guomindang regime, it fell back to Taiwan. The Chinese utilized an authoritarian rule on the Taiwanese. With the help of the U.S, Taiwan achieved economic prosperity. Among the other small east Asian states, which blended Western and traditional ideas to have economic gains, Hong Kong remained a British colony until 1997 and Singapore developed into a free port by 1965. As the government of Taiwan concentrated on economic gains, agricultural and industrial production rapidly increased. The Taiwanese had built contacts throughout eastern and southeasten Asia, to facilitate commerce, and opened links with the regime in Beijing. Once Chang Kai-shek died, the gap between mainland-born Chinese and Taiwanese lessened. Singapore developed similarly to Taiwan, as Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew maintained tight control over people's public and private life, and suppressed opposition movements. Hong Kong continued to link China to the rest of the world.
During the 1930s, the Japanese invaded China and Chiang Kai-shek was forced to temporarily ally with the Communists. The war strengthened the Communists because they fought guerilla campaigns and took over a majority of China. Soon, the Communist policies gained support from peasants and other groups and the Communists won the battle. The Communists threatened to invade the Nationalist refuge in Taiwan, supported the Vietnamese liberation movement, and ended the close cooperation with the Soviet Union. Mao Zedong started a five-year plan, similar to the one Stalin used. Mao had a deep hostility to the elites and he believed that the peasants should be the main support. Mao initiated the Mass Line approach which was composed of formations of agricultural cooperatives which then became farming collectives. Mao's Great Leap Forward was an effort to revitalize the revolution by restoring its mass and rural base. It was supposed to have the peasants do all the products at home, but the plan just ended with economic disaster. Once the plan was terminated Mao was overthrown and the pragmatists took over. They used policies of restored state direction and local level market incentives. Mao's wife, Jianh Qing, worked to liberate Chinese women, and eventually they were able to vote and gained more freedom. Mao launched the Cultural Revolution to get his opponents attacked, killed, or forced into rural labor. The Gang of Four, led by Jiang, was slowly pushed back by Deng Xiaoping. When Mao and Zhou Enlai died, the Communists and pragmatists battled for succession, which resulted in a victory for the pragmatist. They opened China to Western influences and capitalist reforms, but there were no political reforms.
In Vietnam, Confucian leaders were unable to stop the French from taking over so their system was discredited. In the late 1770s when the Tayson peasant rebellion removed Nguyen and Trinh dynasties the French took advantage and backed Nguyen Anh to help him unify Vietnam. Since Nguyen was committed to Confucianism, French missionaries were unable to convert Vietnam to Catholicism. The French intervened in the 1840s and by 1890 Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos were under thier control. The French took so much from the peasants that, even though Vietnam was a leading rice producer, peasant consumption decreased. A Western-educated middle class was formed and worked in the government. In the 1920s, a Vietnamese Nationalist Party, VNQDD, began to pursue violent revolution. Once the VNQDD fell, the Communist party was the main force of resistance. They shifted their support to the peasants, but unfortunately the French defeated the Communists and, in 1941, Japan occupied Vietnam. The Communists survived the French defeat and emerged from WWII as an effective party, and by 1945 the Communists, Viet Minh, proclaimed Vietnam independent. The French had taken refuge in the south and once the Communists defeated Japan, they focused on the French to defeat them at Dien Bien Phu in 1954. The promise of a new elected government was never kept and Vietnam became entangled in the Cold War issues. In order to keep South Vietnam free from communist takeover, the U.S intervened. When Ngo Dinh Diem, the president of the southern government, failed to stop the communists the U.S intervened and removed him from power, but they eventually gave up and Vietnam fell to the Communists. Vietnam was then united under the Communists. After this, the U.S used its influence to block international assistance to Vietnam. A highly centralized economy stifled growth and continued wartime miseries.