ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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China s Student Problem

China's 'Student Problem' GPD STUDENTS are in the news again after a good two decades. What happened to them in the late sixties would hardly need repetition now. They created a storm which was unparalleled in the history not only of China but also of the world, the Paris uprising of students of the same period notwithstanding. The only parallel which does come to one's mind is what the students had done in May of 1919 in China itself. The May Fourth movement began a new chapter in China's history which ended in the revolution in 1949. May 1919 introduced a new word in China's political vocabulary. Beginning with that year everything meaningful and politically or culturally significant came to be described as "new". The revolutionary praxis of the Chinese people made a word like "new" into a potent weapon. To be sure, the students' movement in China has had a history going beyond 1919. Its modern avatara can be safely taken back to the period in the last decades of the nineteenth century when Chinese students started going to Japanese and Western universities. Mao Zedong was once a member of a committee which selected these scholar candidates to go abroad for higher studies. Zhou-En-lai himself went to France, and so on. Yet it remains true to say that May 1919 was the greatest landmark in the history of the students' movements in China.

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