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2 t • The three articles in this issue are awesome in their implications for the study of the Repub~ican period, because they reveal (1) the enormous scho~ar~y ta~ents and institutional resources that China and Taiwan can. bring to the study of 20th-century Chinese history, and (2) the extent of archival holdings that await exploration. Thus far, it would seem, we have only been chipping at the edges of Republican Chinese studies. The articles by Ch'in Hsiao-yi and Li Zongyi were first presented to a session of the Association for Asian Studies in Chicago in Apri~ 1982, and are here printed an revised form. Winston Hsieh specia~ly wrote his article as an introduction to those by Ch'in and Li. Lloyd Eastman (Acting-Editor for this issue) -AT THE THRESHOLD OF A NEW ERA Winston Hs£eh University of Missouri - St. Louis There is every indication that within the forthcoming decade the entire landscape of Republican Chinese studies will be drastically altered. In Japan, for instance, the fruits of the first and second five-year projects of the Program for Modern Chinese history. headquartered at Kyoto University's Institute £or Humanistic Sciences. are. being published in separate series on the 1911 Revolution and the May Fourth Movement~ In Taiwan, Nationalist authorities recently announced plans to systematically open the rich archival collections that they evacuated from the Chinese Mainland in the late 1940s. Above all, the prospect of rapid development in the field has been brought into bold relief by the voluminous outpouring of materials from the Chinese Mainland in the wake of the nationwide celebration of the Revolution's 70th anniversary in 1981. The current phenomenon of scholarly publications from the PRC is particularly eye-catching against the backdrop of the almost total eclipse of academic activities for more than one decade. What appears to be a sudden burst of energy from the historical profession can be better perceived against the intellectual and political milieu of the recent years, which is increasingly in favor of scholarly productivity in China. No sooner did the ideological thaw begin in the late 1970s than a number of Chinese historians launched large-scale projects of collective research and • 3 compilation. Research academies have been upgraded to sponsor advanced studies: new journals have mushroomed;' and learned societies have been established for improving college teaching and, in particular, for restoring the social-science disciplines that were eliminated from the college curricula for more than twenty years. No less eye-catching is the abundant curiosity about Western scholarship, in contrast to the intensified suspicion of foreign influences during the preceeding decades. The works of American sinologists, for instance, are now enthusiastically introduced and even translated into Chinese. In the field of historical studies of the Republican period, what is happening in China can only be described as a publication explosion. There is now a momentum of research, compilation, and publication that is certain to endure in coming years. In the meantime, the intell.ectual and political challenges of these efforts are acutely felt in Taiwan, where the Nationalists have responded with equally vigorous efforts in documentary compilation and publication. Commemoration of the 1911 Revolution. During 1979-83, the Chinese sponsored several highly publicized programs commemorating historical events. Of these, the most widely heralded was the 1981 celebration of the 50th anniversary of the 1911 Revolution. This celebration was distinguished by two prominent features. The first was the enormous scale of the program. For example, research historians and institutional resources were mobilized nationally, and a Boeing-727 was chartered to carry visiting foreign scholars to a series of meetings during October 7-19, held consecutively in three historic cities, located in north, central and south China. In Beijing a three-day celebration, marking the formal opening of the commemorative programs, included scholarly sessions at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences and commemorative exhibits. Participating were several dozen scholars invited from Australia, Britain, Canada, Europe, Hong Kong, Japan, Korea, and the United States. The climax of the.conference was a meeting in Wuhan, which comprised 17 panels of research papers. The more than 80 Chinese participants had been selected by a national...


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