Skip to Main Content
Have library access? Log in through your library
China’s Politics in Perspective

China’s Politics in Perspective

HAROLD S. QUIGLEY
Copyright Date: 1962
Edition: NED - New edition
Pages: 286
https://www.jstor.org/stable/10.5749/j.ctttspwv
  • Cite this Item
  • Book Info
    China’s Politics in Perspective
    Book Description:

    In a concise, readable diagnosis of present-day China, this book provides the perspective which is needed for a realistic view of the Chinese situation today. Professor Quigley introduces the reader to contemporary political, economic, and social conditions on the mainland and on Nationalist-held Taiwan by briefly reviewing the basic tenets of Confucianism and other classical philosophies, the principal aspects of the imperial system, and the domestic and foreign influences which contributed to the collapse of monarchy in 1911. He recalls the revolutionary doctrine of Sun Yat-sen and surveys the nature and conduct of government under the first and second republics and the forces that operated for and against the transfer of liberal ideals from paper to practice. After showing how the Communist leadership gained its foothold and present control, he discusses the ideologies of Mao Tse-tung and Chiang Kai-shek, the structure and administration of their governments and major parties, their economic, social, and foreign policies, the independence movement on Taiwan, the prospects for democracy and the dilemma in which the United States has been placed by the victory of the Communists over a wartime ally. In addition to being appropriate for general readers and for study groups interested in contemporary affairs, the book is especially suitable for use as a college text.

    eISBN: 978-1-4529-3713-7
    Subjects: History

Table of Contents

Export Selected Citations Export to NoodleTools Export to RefWorks Export to EasyBib Export a RIS file (For EndNote, ProCite, Reference Manager, Zotero, Mendeley...) Export a Text file (For BibTex)
  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. PREFACE
    (pp. vii-viii)
    Harold S. Quigley
  3. INTRODUCTION
    (pp. ix-xii)

    Granted that we Americans are emotional rather than logical in foreign relations, we want to be fair to other peoples, and to meet our responsibility, as citizens in a democracy, to aid in the formulation of foreign policy. Popular understanding of peoples with whom our government must deal is essential if we are to build a foundation of public opinion on solid rock rather than shifting sand. This brief inquiry into how China came to be what she is today seeks to contribute toward a more realistic view than has been evidenced in American policy toward her during the past...

  4. THE ROMANIZATION OF CHINESE
    (pp. xiii-xiv)
  5. Table of Contents
    (pp. xv-2)
  6. EARLY POLITICAL THOUGHT: THE CLASSICAL HERITAGE
    (pp. 3-11)

    Chinese historical records begin in the twelfth century b.c., though scholars date the origin of Chinese society between twelve and eighteen centuries earlier. The earliest of the recorded dynasties which ruled China before the Republican Revolution of 1911 was the Chou (1122–255 b.c.). Known as the Classical Age, this long period saw the development of moral precepts which were codified unofficially in the writings ascribed to China’s greatest philosopher, Confucius (K’ung Futze — the Master, K’ung). In the actual process of Chou administration the authority of the emperors was slight after the eighth century b.c., whenwangs(kings), divided...

  7. IMPERIAL GOVERNMENT
    (pp. 12-22)

    China emerged from feudalism in 221 b.c., when the ruler of the state of Ch’in brought the many principalities of the defunct Chou Empire under his control and established himself as the first Emperor of a unified China. He took the title Ch’in Shih Huang Ti, the first Emperor Ch’in. The state of Ch’in embraced present-day Shensi and part of Kansu; the Empire comprised the area between the Yangtsze River and the Great Wall, built in part by Ch’in Shih. From the fourth century a.d. onward the Chinese moved south, driving out the original inhabitants and ultimately occupying the whole...

  8. TRANSITION AND REVOLUTION: THE COLLAPSE OF MONARCHY
    (pp. 23-29)

    The Manchu dynasty (1644–1912) attained the zenith of its power and prestige during the reign of Emperor Ch’ien Lung in the latter half of the eighteenth century. At that time some aspects of Chinese culture rivaled the accomplishments of the great eras of T’ang and Sung. Europeans, among them Voltaire, regarded Chinese society as well ordered and governed by beneficent rulers on moral principles. Among the states of East Asia, many of which accepted Chinese suzerainty, China was recognized as their mentor and model in cultural, political, and commercial fields. The omens were favorable for the attainment of still...

  9. POLITICAL IDEAS OF SUN YAT-SEN
    (pp. 30-39)

    Sun Yat-sen is venerated in China as the Father of the Chinese Republic. His tomb on the slope of Purple Mountain near Nanking is a magnificent monument, more so than the tomb of Napoleon Bonaparte at Les Invalides in Paris. He was a man of magnetic personality and deep earnestness. He was small of stature but of great dignity. His fine eyes were kindly and thoughtful. His features were not pronouncedly Chinese and his approach to problems was cosmopolitan rather than Oriental. One who conversed with him even briefly felt that he was a truly dedicated man with a sense...

  10. THE PARLIAMENTARY REPUBLIC
    (pp. 40-50)

    No apology need be made for a brief survey of the early stages of the struggle for a republic in China. We cannot comprehend the present without studying the steps, the forward and backward motions, that led to it. We should not be contemptuous of early failures. If Sun Yat-sen and his co-believers in democracy aimed at a shining target, if they tried to move too rapidly, where did they find their inspiration? Where but in the French and American revolutions? If the first Republic collapsed after a few years, why did it collapse? Is the complete answer to be...

  11. ERA OF THE WARLORDS
    (pp. 51-59)

    From the death of President Yuan Shih-k’ai in 1916 to the establishment of the National Government at Nanking in 1928 China was governed — misgoverned is more accurate — by militarists. We have already observed their emasculation of constitutionalism at Peking. It remains to explain their exercise of power in the provinces and to examine the economic and social effects of their rivalries. We are concerned not only with the structure of government, law, and theory, but also with political action—“behavior” is the contemporary term. We cannot apply all the techniques of behaviorism as it is being applied in...

  12. REVIVAL OF THE KUOMINTANG
    (pp. 60-68)

    The Kuomintang lost its fight to establish a parliamentary republic. But the party was not destroyed. New life was breathed into it by the university professors and students, by the progressive business leaders, and even by a few military governors, mainly from southern provinces which had been longer in touch with the West. Sun Yat-sen, up to the time of his death in 1925, kept the headship of the party and never ceased his efforts to rejuvenate it. A strong stimulant to its rebirth was China’s unhappy experience in foreign relations. Both the Versailles Conference following World War I and...

  13. THE RISE OF COMMUNISM IN CHINA
    (pp. 69-76)

    Communism arose in China as a result of the success of the Bolshevist Revolution of 1917 in Russia. Before that success Chinese thinkers who were critical of Confucian and other classical doctrines had put their faith in Western democracy and science. The foremost among these intellectuals were Hu Shih, Li Ta-chao, and Ch’en Tuhsiu, respectively professors of philosophy, history, and literature at the University of Peking, China’s leading institution of learning. Originally their interest in communism was academic; Professor Li founded the Society for the Study of Marxism in 1918. Professor Hu Shih did not agree with his colleagues but...

  14. THE NATIONAL GOVERNMENT OF THE KUOMINTANG
    (pp. 77-91)

    The National Government installed at Nanking in 1927 provided itself with an Organic Law or constitution in 1928. Between that date and 1949, when the Communist triumph forced the Nationalists’ evacuation to Taiwan (Formosa), some eleven revisions of the basic law were promulgated. These were of minor significance until the revision of 1936, which was an essentially new document. The constitution of 1936, in revised form, was promulgated in late 1947, though completed in 1946 (see appendix). Thus it may be said that the system formalized in 1928 was in legal operation for some twenty years. We turn our attention...

  15. WAR-TIME PROBLEMS AND POLICY
    (pp. 92-104)

    The National Government was engaged in controversies with Japan even before it was firmly in power at Nanking. Throughout its existence, civil and foreign war, at times hot, at other times cold, was endemic. If its record of economic, social, and political progress was not brilliant one must, in fairness, ask that judgment take account of war-time impediments to accomplishment. The period of twenty years — 1927–1947 — between the inauguration of the government and its establishment of formal constitutionalism may usefully be dealt with in two parts of ten years each. Our concern is not with the causes...

  16. THE PEOPLE’S GOVERNMENT AT AT PEKING
    (pp. 105-117)

    Between the end of the Pacific phase of World War II in 1945 and the establishment of the Communist government at Peking (Peiping) in 1949 serious efforts were made to reconcile the opposing ideas of the Kuomintang and Communist leaders regarding bases of a political and economic order that might make possible the creation of a coalition government. Mao Tse-tung, guaranteed American protection, went to confer with Chiang Kai-shek at Chungking in the autumn of 1945. Mao’s terms called for the recognition of Communist autonomy in China’s five northern provinces. He asked for a country-wide plebiscite to test popular reaction...

  17. THE IDEOLOGY OF MAO TSE-TUNG
    (pp. 118-127)

    Mao Tse-tung was born in the central province of Hunan, which has produced more than its share of radical thinkers, in 1893. His father, a peasant who had served in the imperial army, was, as owner of four acres of land, classified as a well-to-do farmer. At the age of eight, Mao entered school, where, like his mates, he was initiated into the classics: Confucius, Mencius, Laotze, and others — heavy fare for children. He found them uninteresting (he preferred romances and stories of rebellion), but useful in enabling him to remind his harsh father that a filial son deserved...

  18. COMMUNIST SOCIAL POLICY
    (pp. 128-136)

    Communist social policy in China, as elsewhere, professes to aim for the uplift of the masses and the removal of privilege and of control of the masses by the privileged classes. It professes to proceed on the assumption that the people in general have been taught that their place is to work, not to think; to accept a secondary status, and to leave the direction of their lives to their betters — the landlords, the intellectuals, and the capitalists. The Communists regard it as their first objective to bring home to the people the idea of their own importance. This...

  19. COMMUNIST ECONOMIC POLICY
    (pp. 137-148)

    Communist economic policy in China has given first place to the development of heavy industry, secondary emphasis to light industry. We noted earlier the unusual number of ministries in the economic field. Many Russian economic advisers have been brought in, and industrial development has been hastened to ensure a solid foundation for a modern economy and for military power. In accordance with socialist principles large-scale industries are state-owned and state-operated except where it has been found necessary temporarily to permit continuance of some private concerns under strict regulation and control. Combinations of state and private operation also continue to exist....

  20. COMMUNIST FOREIGN POLICY
    (pp. 149-161)

    The two main pillars of Communist China’s foreign policy are the attainment of national equality and territorial entity on the one hand and the maintenance of solidarity with other Communist states on the other. These two pillars stand out more clearly today than they did in 1949, when Mao Tse-tung, at the inception of the Peking Communist government, stated that China “must incline” toward Soviet Russia. When, in 1950, Mao went to Moscow and signed a treaty of alliance with the Soviet Union, the general tendency of Western observers to label China a satellite of the Russian state was confirmed....

  21. THE NATIONAL GOVERNMENT ON TAIWAN
    (pp. 162-173)

    Taiwan, known to the Western world as Formosa, lies a hundred and ten miles off the coast of China, opposite Fukien province. It was administered as part of Fukien prior to the cession to Japan in 1895. The Pescadores groups of sixty-four nearby islets and fourteen other islets are included within the area of Taiwan. Japan surrendered the area to the Allied Powers at the end of World War II. Its status remains undecided, but the Powers have acquiesced in its occupation and administration by the National Government. At the Cairo meeting in 1943 President Roosevelt, Prime Minister Churchill, and...

  22. DEMOCRACY’S CHANCE IN CHINA
    (pp. 174-184)

    Realistic, as opposed to sentimental, appraisal of Chinese politics and policies today must take account not only of current issues and invective but of the heritage of the past. To try to deal intelligently with a great people, whose rulers are exhibiting symptoms of paranoia, without weighing their past experience, is as unscientific as to attempt a medical diagnosis without reference to a patient’s record of health and illness. Democracy’s chance in China — one may speculate but not prophesy — may be furthered by our patient contemplation of some major historical clues to contemporary events and attitudes.

    Chinese political...

  23. WHAT POLICY FOR THE UNITED STATES?
    (pp. 185-204)

    Whether to recognize the People’s Government at Peking as the legal government of China remains undecided by the government of the United States after more than a decade of Communist control of the mainland. In earlier chapters the positions of Peking and Taipei relative to the United States have been noted. Although our subject is Chinese, not American, politics it seems desirable to conclude with a viewing of the Chinese scene from this side of the Pacific. Why has our government, under both Democratic and Republican leadership, and with consistent accord between the Administration and the Congress, held firmly to...

  24. THE CONSTITUTION OF THE NATIONAL REPUBLIC OF CHINA (Effective December 25, 1947)
    (pp. 205-221)
  25. THE CONSTITUTION OF THE PEOPLE’S REPUBLIC OF CHINA (Effective September 20, 1954)
    (pp. 222-235)
  26. THE CONSTITUTION OF THE COMMUNIST PARTY OF CHINA (Effective September 26, 1956)
    (pp. 236-252)
  27. CHINESE-AMERICAN MUTUAL DEFENSE TREATY (Signed December 2, 1954; effective March 3, 1955)
    (pp. 253-254)
  28. CHINESE-SOVIET TREATY OF FRIENDSHIP AND ALLIANCE (Effective February 14, 1950)
    (pp. 255-255)
  29. RECOMMENDED READINGS
    (pp. 256-261)
  30. INDEX
    (pp. 262-266)