UKCHA Report - Dr. Vivienne Xiangwei Guo

Aim of the Application:
This application aims at supporting part of my research activity and network-building for my book project China’s Warlords and Enlightenment Thinkers.

My Research Activities: 13-25 Oct. 2018
• 13 October: Arrival in Beijing, making detailed research plan for the following days.
• 14-19 October & 22-25 October: Collecting documents at the National Library of China.
• 20-21 October: Collecting documents at Za Shu Guan, a private library and archive.
• 3-5pm 16 October: Meeting with prof. Xuemei Qian at the School of International Studies, Peking University.
• 10-12am 18 October: Meeting with prof. Zhenzhou Xu at the School of International Studies, Peking University.
• 6-8pm 18 October: dinner with prof. Qian at Shaoyuan Canteen, Peking University. Prof. Xu could not join us due to health reasons.

My Research Outcome:
This research trip allowed me to collect a major part of the documents needed for my book project. Below are some of the most valuable primary sources that I have collected:

• Newspapers and magazines published in the early 20th century:
Chen Bao [Morning Daily] (microfilm copies between 1919 and 1924)
Jia Yin [The Tiger magazine] (rare paper copies between 1914 and 1915)
Nuli Weekly (microfilm copies between 1922 and 1923)
New Youth Volume 7 (rare paper copies between 1919 and 1920)
Zhujiang Review (rare paper copies 1922)
Xin Chao [The Renaissance] (microfilm copies 1919-1921)

• Other primary materials:
Jiefang Bielu [The Record of the Liberation]: a valuable anonymous memoir reflecting on ‘warlord’ Chen Jiongming, published in 1968.
Haifeng Wenshi vol. 1 [The Literary and Historical Materials of Haifeng]: the volume includes memoirs delineating the activities of Soviet representatives in warlord rule regions.
Wu Peifu Jiangjun [General Wu Peifu]: a microfilm copy of a book on Wu Peifu, published in 1940.
Zhengzhi Wenji [Collection of Political Ideas]: a rare microfilm copy of Wu Peifu’s and Yan Xishan’s writings.
Wu Peifu Shudu [Letters of Wu Peifu]: a rare microfilm copy of Wu Peifu’s letters, 1922.

• Other edited collection of historical materials:
Bai Jianwu Riji [The Diary of Bai Jianwu]
Liang Shuming Wanglai Shuxin Ji [The Letters of Liang Shuming]
Zhao Hengti Zhuanji Ziliao [The Biographical Materials on Zhao Hengti] 2 volumes
Tan Yankai Zhuanji Ziliao [The Biographical Materials on Tan Yankai] 5 volumes

This research trip also allowed me to tighten my research links with scholars based at Peking University. My meetings with prof. Qian and prof. Xu are fruitful and inspirational:
• Prof. Qian’s current research on regional governance and nationalist movements in Afghanistan during the Soviet-Afghan War resonates with my own research on China’s warlord conflicts and regional reforms. We both expect further communication and collaboration on this subject.
• Prof. Xu’s insights on the relationship (and distinction) between the evolution of European political thoughts in the late 19th and early 20th century and the Chinese May Fourth enlightenment are extremely helpful for me to identify the unique Chinese context in which the warlords engaged new ideas, and to place this political and cultural renewal against a global backdrop.
• Unfortunately, a meeting with prof. Zhesheng Ouyang did not take place due to prof. Ouyang’s trip to Hong Kong. But I have built close contact with prof. Ouyang via Wechat, who agreed to send me information about the academic activities to be held at Peking University in 2019 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the May Fourth Movement. It is likely that I will go to Peking University next year to participate in the commemorative conference.

In summary, this research trip has provided a good starting point to develop my book project, to further academic collaboration with scholars at Peking University, and to facilitate my application for a larger grant to extend this project in future.
 

Vivienne Xiangwei Guo

 

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