The Impact of the Three Principles of the People on China and Taiwan

2194 Words Dec 9th, 2011 9 Pages
“We shall establish a united Chinese Republic in order that all the peoples—Manchus, Mongols, Tibetans, Tartars and Chinese—should constitute a single powerful nation.… Such a nationalism is possible, and we must pursue it.”- Sun Yat-sen, Three Principles of the People.

Countless nationalists across the world seek for the rights Dr. Sun Yat-sen stated in his Principles. Sun Yat-sen was born in Cuiheng, a small village in Guangzhou Province, during the Qing Dynasty in 1866. At this time, the Qing was slowly declining. The Taiping Rebellion, an unsuccessful, large-scale revolt against the Qing dynasty led by Hong Xiuquan, threatened the survival of the empire, the Confucian system. The ascension of the two-year old Emperor Puyi also made
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Sun declared that the government must revise foreign treaties and re-establish national independence as well as freedom from imperialist domination. The principle states that the government would also develop a “civic-nationalism” as opposed to ethnic nationalism from before. This will allow a special unity among all of the Chinese ethnicities: Han, Mongols, Tibetans, Manchus, and Muslims (Uyghurs) (Sutton 137). Ethnic nationalists believed that nationality is determined by traditions or religion, however, the idea of civic nationalism is the belief that nationality is common to all, regardless of the ethnicity, race, language, religion, etc. An example of a civic nation is the United Kingdom, which consists of English, Irish, Scottish and Welsh citizens (Sutton 140).
Sun Yat-sen’s Three Principles of the People left a lasting impact on China. Communist revolutionary and father of Communist China Mao Zedong used the principles of Sun in the Cultural Revolution and the Great Leap Forward. While, nationalism was very important to Mao Zedong’s ideologies, the people’s welfare was seen with a Marxist viewpoint rather than a Western nationalistic viewpoint (Zhao). In 2005, Hu Jintao and his administration proposed a political doctrine aimed at the creation of a “harmonious society.” Hu dreams of a “harmonious society”, where all social classes will respect one another and poverty shall be eliminated. The Communist Party began to realize that because of China’s

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