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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of History, Classics and Archaeology : History

Undergraduate Course: China's Twentieth Century Revolutions (HIST10053)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of History, Classics and Archaeology CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryArguably no other country in the world during the twentieth century experienced such dramatic and turbulent change as China. At the turn of the century China was ruled by the Qing dynasty, heir to an imperial tradition that can be traced back to the 3rd century BC. By the end of the century China had experienced three major political revolutions (as well as enormous social and cultural change) and is today one of the very few states in the world still ruled by a Communist party. This course aims to provide insight into the meaning and significance of these changes.
Course description This course aims will focus on the nature and impact of six major developments: (1) The 1911 Revolution, which overthrew China's last imperial monarchy and established a republic, the first in Asia; (2) The May Fourth Movement in the 1910s and 1920s, a cultural-intellectual movement that also marked the beginnings of a mass nationalism and resulted in the creation of the Chinese Communist Party; (3) The Nationalist Revolution of the 1920s and the establishment of China's first party-state under the Guomindang (Nationalist Party); (4) The Communist-led rural revolution of the 1930s and 1940s that ushered in the People's Republic of China in 1949; (5) Mao Zedong's 'Chinese Road to Socialism' in the 1950s and 1960s; and (6) The economic, social and political changes of the post-Mao period after 1976. Equal attention will be paid to the political, social and cultural dimension of these changes, and use will be made of translated primary documents and literature in translation where relevant.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements A pass or passes in 40 credits of first level historical courses or equivalent and a pass or passes in 40 credits of second level historical courses or equivalent.
Before enrolling students on this course, Personal Tutors are asked to contact the History Honours Admission Secretary to ensure that a place is available (Tel: 503783).
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesVisiting students should have at least 3 History courses at grade B or above (or be predicted to obtain this). We will only consider University/College level courses. Applicants should note that, as with other popular courses, meeting the minimum does NOT guarantee admission.

** as numbers are limited, visiting students should contact the Visiting Student Office directly for admission to this course **
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. demonstrate, by way of coursework and examination as required, command of the body of knowledge considered in the course
  2. demonstrate, by way of coursework and examination as required, an ability to read, analyse and reflect critically upon relevant scholarship
  3. demonstrate, by way of coursework and examination as required, an ability to understand, evaluate and utilise a variety of primary source material
  4. demonstrate, by way of coursework and examination as required, the ability to develop and sustain scholarly arguments in oral and written form, by formulating appropriate questions and utilising relevant evidence
  5. demonstrate independence of mind and initiative; intellectual integrity and maturity; an ability to evaluate the work of others, including peers
Reading List
1. Paul Bailey, China in the Twentieth Century (Oxford: Blackwell, 2001).
2. Lucien Bianco, "Peasant Movements", in J.K.Fairbank and A.Feuerwerker (eds), The Cambridge History of China, vol.13 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1986).
3. Frank Dikötter, The Discourse of Race in Modern China (London: Hurst, 1992).
4. Prasenjit Duara, Culture, Power and the State: Rural North China 1900-1942 (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1988).
5. Joseph Esherick, Reform and Revolution in China: The 1911 Revolution in Hunan and Hubei (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1976), chs. 4-5, epilogue.
6. Rebecca Karl, Staging the World: Chinese Nationalism at the Turn of the Twentieth Century (Durham: Duke University Press, 2002), chs. 6-7.
7. Kenneth G. Lieberthal, Governing China from Revolution through Reform (New York: Norton, 2004).
8. Edward McCord, "Burn, Kill, Rape and Rob: Military Atrocities, Warlordism and Anti-Warlordism in Republican China", in Diana Lary & Stephen Mackinnon (eds.), Scars of War (Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 2001).
9. Maurice Meisner Mao's China and After (New York: Free Press, 1999).
10. Rana Mitter, Modern China: A Very Short Introduction (Oxford: OUP, 2008).
11. Vera Schwarcz, The Chinese Enlightenment (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1986), intro., chs.1-3.
12. Hans van de Ven, "The Military in the Republic", China Quarterly no.150 (June 1997).
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
KeywordsChina's 20th C Rev
Course organiserMr Rudolph Ng
Tel: (0131 6)50 38 44
Course secretaryMiss Katy Robinson
Tel: (0131 6)50 3780
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