Another May Fourth
MIZOGUCHI Yūzō (Translated by Jason MORGAN)
ABSTRACT The May Fourth Movement is most often understood as a precursor to the China that emerged under the rule of Mao Zedong and the Chinese Communist Party. In this essay, Mizoguchi presents an alternative reading of May Fourth, one envisioned by Liang Shuming as more deeply rooted in Chinese tradition than the heavily Marxian, class-based May Fourth later positioned as the forebear of the Cultural Revolution.
Keywords: May Fourth, Liang Shuming, Mao Zedong, Chen Duxiu, kongjiao, li jiao, Cultural Revolution, Chinese Communist Party (CCP), rural governance, socialism, private property, lineages
Mizoguchi Yūzō (1932–2010). Born in Nagoya. After studying Chinese literature in the Faculty of Letters at the University of Tokyo, Mizguchi went on to attend graduate school at Nagoya University, where he became a student of Iriya Yoshitaka. He specialized in Chinese intellectual history and taught at Saitama University, Hitotsubashi University, and The Univerity of Tokyo. He is the author of many books and articles. His representative works include 方法としての中国 [China as method. 1989], 中国の衝撃 [China’s impact. 2004], 中国思想史 [Chinese intellectual history. 2007].
Jason Morgan received a PhD in Japanese history from the University of Wisconsin (USA) in 2016. He is currently a research associate at the Japan Forum for Strategic Studies. Morgan wishes to thank the anonymous reviewer of this translation, whose keen eye for accuracy and ability to see the Mizoguchi original in multiple dimensions – historical, linguistic, literary, and cross-cultural – greatly improved the initial Englishing of the essay.