Sun Yat-Sen His Life and Its Meaning: A Critical Biography

By Lyon Sharman | Go to book overview

CHAPTER VIII
Russia and Reorganization

1. DIAGNOSING THE DISGRACE

WHILE China was surging with the new tidal wave of thought, Sun Yat-sen was dividing his time between brief tenures of power in Canton and retirement to the home of his own choice in Shanghai. His leisure he spent in writing. The years from 1918 to his death in 1925 cover the most active literary period of his life. He issued from Shanghai a periodical in Chinese called the Reconstruction Miscellany, in which he published articles that were afterward collected into books. Thus there is abundance of material to show what Sun Yat-sen was thinking about China at this period of his life. The content of his own mind is particularly worth noticing, that it may be compared with his utterances after Soviet influences began to play upon him.

From these writings it is evident that Sun Yat-sen was still puzzling over the failure of the Republic. Although the Revolution had succeeded in overthrowing the Monarchy, the Republic had failed. Why? Sun Yat-sen had actually thought of the reconstruction of China into a republic as an easy matter compared with overthrowing the Manchus. He says, "When the period of destruction closed, revolutionary reconstruction seemed an easy thing to me."

At first it seemed as if I, as the leader, would be able very easily to give effect to the programme of the revolutionary party, i. e. nationalism, democracy, Socialism and the Fivefold Constitution, as well as solve the problems created by the Revolution. If I had succeeded in achieving.

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