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(1,431 words)

Author(s): Staiger, Brunhild
Academies ( shuyuan) existed already in pre-modern China. They first appeared in the Tang period, during which the most famous institution of this type, the Hanlin Academy, was established. In the Song and Yuan periods their number steadily increased and reached its zenith during the Ming and Qing dynasties. The traditional academies were run partly on a private basis, partly by local authorities, and served both teaching and research. In the academies scholars were educated, libraries established…

May Fourth Movement

(2,811 words)

Author(s): Staiger, Brunhild
In a more limited sense, the May Fourth Movement ( wusi yundong) signifies the patriotic student protests in 1919, which culminated in the May Fourth Incident ( wusi shijian). In a wider sense it refers to the intellectual-cultural reform movement of 1917 to 1921, the so-called New Culture Movement. 1917 marks the year when a group of young intellectuals came together at Beijing University who, with their agenda of enlightenment, almost completely broke with tradition and had a lasting impact on the student youth. In 1921,…

Preface to the German Edition

(1,737 words)

Author(s): Staiger, Brunhild
Since China dedicated itself to policies of reform and openness in the late 1970s, the country has been undergoing profound transformation, far exceeding the mere renunciation of the Maoist model of development and the construction of market-economy structures. The China-Lexikon seeks to contribute to an understanding of this complex process of transformation, with its wide-ranging implications for social, economic, and cultural life in China, and at the same time to meet the need for information which has, in general, grown in conse…