When the Ming dynasty (1368-1644 CE) government looked like the misbegotten union of a totalitarian emperor and a cowardly, grasping bureaucracy, shrines to the living – primarily to late-Ming eunuch dictator Wei Zhongxian – looked like absurd manifestations of wicked megalomania. But now scholars take a more balanced view of the complicated strengths and weakness of a state that did last for 276 years. Ming living shrines, too, deserve a second look. For they appear frequently in the historical record -- across the whole span of the dynasty (indeed of the imperial period), the whole...
For more than a hundred years, China embarked on a movement of forced secularization, with most religions heavily persecuted or banned. But religion is now back at the center of Chinese society and politics, with the country awash with new temples, churches, and mosques—as well as cults, sects, and politicians trying to harness religion for their own ends. Churches are being demolished and Muslims forced to attend reeducation camps, while the government is also promoting Buddhism and folk religion. How to reconcile these contradictory claims?
The question about how to interpret the nature of May Fourth Movement has been at the center of many debates concerning the development of Chinese history, culture, and politics. Yet the studies of “May Fourth” had met with new challenges in the twenty-first century due to a number of reasons. First, the movementbecame a subject of studies in the U.S. in the 1960s, in which scholars began to inquire into the nature and rise of Chinese communism. A key question debated at the time is whether the movementis responsible for, or analogous to, Chinese Cultural Revolution.
The Russian Revolution of 1917 did not have the same meaning in Asia as it did in Europe or Russia itself, and it meant something different in Japan than in the rest of Asia on account of the fact that Japan was not a colonized country but a colonizer.After the failed Siberian Intervention, the Japanese government had to negotiate with the actual authority in Russia, the Bolshevik government, rather than with the impotent anti-communist forces, in order to protect Japan’s interests in the Russian Far East, north Manchuria and Inner Mongolia.