Awakening Age 觉醒年代 Episode 34 Recap
Chen Duxiu sat alone on the chair in the room, the kerosene lamp shining on his solemn face. Early in the morning, Yannian picked up a handful of rice and fed it to the pigeons, watching his father’s room sweep the floor. Chen Duxiu was lying on the table with his bare feet and disheveled asleep, and the manuscript in his hand was “Research Room and Prison”, which initiated a sharp discussion on the existence and development of social civilization.
Li Dazhao stood on the street to preach. Students in Tianjin and Shanghai went on strike to support the Beijing student movement. Peking University students demanded severe punishments for traitors. Qingdao refused to sign or accept Hu Renyuan as the principal of Peking University.
The Beiyang government’s violent suppression of the student movement aroused great indignation among the people. Teachers and students from dozens of universities in Beijing, as well as workers, businessmen and other people from all walks of life staged demonstrations. The May Fourth Movement spread rapidly, like a fire across the country. Erupted everywhere.
The acting directors of education Fu Yuefen and Wu Bingxiang are waiting for Qian Nengxun. There have been three strikes in Shanghai, and large-scale protests have occurred in Paris and Tokyo in Europe. Foreign forces are demanding that the Beiyang government immediately control the situation. Duan Qirui asked to do everything possible to stabilize the situation in Beijing. Xu Shichang decided to withdraw the infantry, gendarmerie and other troops, and the Beijing Division’s Procuratorate was solely responsible for Beijing’s public security.
Wu Bingxiang was quite critical about this. The army is no longer there. What’s the use of relying on the police alone, but at this point, Fu Yuefen demanded that the arrested students be released and that the military and police should not interfere with the students. For this reason, Wu Bingxiang and Fu Yuefen yelled again. Qian Nengxun angrily prevented the two people’s dispute and asked them to deal with their respective affairs immediately. Wu Bingxiang sighed helplessly with the order to abolish the army.
Xu Shichang issued a presidential decree announcing the release of the detained students and the evacuation of all police. But looking at the opened door, none of the students walked out. The Beijing Federation of Students sent a telegram to the whole country that the government was so unreasonably detaining patriotic students and contempt for human rights.
How could they be considered a country? They must not disperse by themselves. They demanded the removal of Cao Rulin, Zhang Zongxiang and Lu Zongyu so that they would get out of the “prison.” Faced with the students’ request, Xu Shichang convened a meeting.
At present, the residence of the Chinese delegation in Paris has been besieged. If the students are not released, the members of the delegation may be besieged as traitors. Qian Nengxun suggested that the overall situation should not be ignored because of such a few people. Xu Shichang watched everyone respond to Qian Nengxun’s proposal, and then slowly asked the vice president to apologize to the students on his behalf and issued an order for the removal of the three of Cao Zhanglu. The students learned of Cao Zhanglu’s dismissal order and chanted the slogan of long live Chinese academic circles to celebrate their victory.
Chen Duxiu and Li Dazhao, Hu Shi, Lu Xun and others were drinking tea in the editorial office. They talked about the student movement and the Paris Peace Treaty. Lu Xun suggested that it is time to get rid of the servility of the national character, but Hu Shi believes that the first priority is to attend class, patriot and save the country.
It should be a long-term solution. Chen Duxiu deeply disagrees with this. He interrupted the topic and mentioned the next step of “New Youth”. Everyone felt that they should take advantage of the heat and refuse to sign the Paris Peace Treaty, and that such a corrupt regime should fight him to the end. But Hu Shi did not advocate violent revolution, and his distinctive ideas made him and his colleagues in the editorial department different.
Chen Duxiu and Li Dazhao mentioned that they should consider Hu Shi’s feelings, and don’t criticize him too much to make him feel isolated. Li Dazhao only made Hu Shi his own, so he was right. Chen Duxiu and Li Dazhao already have a certain tendency towards Marxism, and they have a further in-depth knowledge and understanding of Marxism.
But China does not yet have all Marxist works. They decided to combine existing resources with China’s reality. Li Dazhao increasingly affirmed that Marxism is the only way out for China, and even felt that the Russian October Revolution was an advanced revolution. It is a revolution of proletarian socialism. Lenin believed that the socialist revolution could break out in the weak areas of the empire. Li Dazhao believed that, and felt that a poor and weak country like China could also take the road of socialism.
Chen Duxiu invited Li Dazhao and Hu Shi to eat at home. Yannian took two jugs of wine sent by General Zou Yongcheng. Chen Duxiu poured out the wine to celebrate with them the joy of the students’ release and the victory of the May Fourth Movement. Qiao Nian angrily watched Yannian go in to eat with his father and husband, but his underage had to sit in the courtyard with his younger siblings to eat, protesting that this was also a feudal ethics. Chen Duxiu took out his own “Beijing Citizens’ Declaration” and handed it over to Yannian for reading.
He put forward five declarations, requiring the people to have the rights of freedom of assembly. Chen Duxiu wanted to expand the student movement into a social movement and publicly declared that if the government does not Agree to carry the struggle to the end. Of course, Li Dazhao was very happy about this, and even proposed that he would go to the streets to hand out flyers. Hu Shi advised him that he was already a young tutor at Peking University, and he didn’t have to do these things that would ruin his academic career.
The contradictions between the three people’s thoughts have become more and more serious. Hu Shi knew that the ideas of Chen and Li had drifted away. He was so drunk that he pushed everyone away and set off on his way home alone. Li Dazhao knew that Chen Duxiu was no longer convenient to come forward, and he decided to be solely responsible for the issuance of this manifesto.