China During Sun Yat-Sen and Mao Zedong Essay

3452 Words May 26th, 2008 14 Pages
Question 1

When classifying revolutionary movements of the 20th century it is often customary to try and label the conflict either Left Wing or Right Wing. However, in the cases of Sun Yat-sen and Mao Zedong, neither Left nor Right Wing seems an appropriate label for what their revolutions contained for China. The difference between democratic and anti-democratic is more fitting for the two Chinese revolutionaries. Both Sun and Mao advocated different methods of development to achieve the same goals but caused drastically different results. Sun Yat-sen, who was taught at a young age the Western ways of life, favored a revolutionary movement with democratic aspirations. Conversely, Mao admired Stalinism and the industrial drive of
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Sun understood that receiving foreign aid would be difficult but he wanted to capitalize on China’s “low-cost labor and its seemingly boundless resources, China ‘would create an unlimited market for the whole world.’”9 By focusing on the economic aspects that China could contribute to the world, Sun felt that foreign investors would want to collaborate and aid China. Besides following his Three Principles, Sun believed in other philosophies and ideologies that would aid in China’s quest towards democracy. The philosophies and principles Sun established have also garnered him adoration and respect in Taiwan. He brought his ideas and the Triple Demism to Taiwan and helped build its foundations. Sun is considered one of the most important leaders to help transform Taiwan into the successful nation that it is today.

Mao Zedong created his own ideology based on Marxism, Leninism, and Stalinism and it is commonly referred to as Maoism. However, Maoism cannot be easily grasped as an ideology like Marxism can because “not only were Mao’s thought obtuse, [but] it entertained diametrically opposite positions on any number of issues.”10 Mao’s inconsistencies and contradictions make it difficult to explain exactly what his ideology focused on. Unlike Sun, who created his Three Principles to fit the exact needs of the Chinese nation, “Mao’s writings having very little relevance to anything in China’s environment and have largely pernicious

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