Decolonization and Revolution: Debating Gandhism in Republican China

Brian Tsui

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


    This article revisits Chinese intellectual discourse on the Indian nationalist movement during the Republican period and argues that interest in the Indian National Congress cut across ideological divides. By examining a range of published sources from the 1920s to the 1940s, this article shows that leading intellectuals took seriously the political movement Mohandas Gandhi led as a distinct model of revolutionary politics, spiritual resistance against Western industrial modernity, and an uneasy alliance between the national bourgeoisie and emerging subaltern groups. It demonstrates that unfolding events in India facilitated articulation of competing views on what decolonization entailed for China and other colonized societies. The Republican period was a unique moment when, in contrast to both the late imperial and postsocialist periods, the Chinese elite considered India as a potential exemplar of a new form of revolutionary politics that held not only national but also global significance.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)59-89
    JournalModern China
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2015


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