Inter-area/Border Crossing

Organized Panel Session

2 - Recasting Violence: China's War of Resistance and the Spirit-Molding Scholastic Society

Thursday, March 22
7:30 PM - 9:30 PM
Location: Virginia Suite A, Lobby Level

“Our mission is to view life and death lightly, and to love and protect the nation. Our purpose is to transform the national temperament and to construct the human mind. Our knowledge is based on passionate motivations and aesthetics. Our theory is to harmonize nature and humanity, and civility and martiality. Our spirit is based on true emotion, zeal, and fearlessness. Our method is to follow the good, be self-content, and shoulder serious responsibilities,” wrote An Ruoding, as the founder of the Chinese Spirit-Molding Scholastic Society (Zhongguo zhuhun xuehui), to the exiled Nationalist government in 1942.


Despite the government’s repeated dismissals of its request to contribute to the war efforts, the Chinese Spirit-Molding Scholastic Society, whose members were mostly social scientists from Chinese and Western universities, continued propagating the Society’s own semantic of violence and attracted thousands of followers. Treatises published in the Society’s journal, the Grand Chivalrous Spirit Weekly, offered insights into how the notion of violence during the apex of the War of Resistance defied the official rhetoric. The Society viewed the war not as an armed confrontation or structural violence between two sovereign states, but as a struggle to restore China’s degenerated spirit. The Society upheld that the war would be won by aligning the citizens’ thoughts with the “Grand Chivalrous Spiritism” – a form of universal transcendental ethics influenced by the traditional “knight-errant” ideal and Western idealism. Such writings constitute “wartime subjectivities” that go far beyond the usual scripts of suffering, sacrifice, and destruction.

Linh D. Vu

Arizona State University, Arizona

Presentation(s):

Send Email for Linh Vu


Assets

2 - Recasting Violence: China's War of Resistance and the Spirit-Molding Scholastic Society



Attendees who have favorited this

Please enter your access key

The asset you are trying to access is locked. Please enter your access key to unlock.

Send Email for Recasting Violence: China's War of Resistance and the Spirit-Molding Scholastic Society