Remembering and forgetting war and occupation in the people’s Republic of China, Hong Kong and Taiwan

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Abstract

Thus declared President Xi Jinping of the People's Republic of China (PRC), in his 2015 speech commemorating the seventieth anniversary of victory over Japan. Just two months earlier, the president of the Republic of China (ROC), Ma Yingjeou, in his own commemorative speech, emphasised the wartime role of the Kuomintang (KMT) regime: 'The victory of the war of resistance was the result of our entire citizenry's heroic struggle led by Generalissimo Chiang Kaishek. No one should tamper with or distort [this truth]'.2 But in fact both presidents spoke in very similar terms, hailing the role of the united 'Chinese people' or 'citizenry'; Xi hardly mentioned the Communist Party in his 3 September oration. Meanwhile, in Hong Kong, the Special Administrative Region (SAR) government organised a slew of events celebrating China's glorious triumph. The chief executive, C. Y. Leung, having attended the September commemorative parade in Beijing, later presided over a local event, hailing the contribution to victory of Hongkongers along with 'other Chinese people'.3 In publicly marking the war's seventieth anniversary, then, the leaders of these three Chinese polities were singing from essentially the same hymn sheet.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRemembering the Second World War
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Pages46-67
Number of pages22
ISBN (Electronic)9781351714754
ISBN (Print)9781138808133
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Arts and Humanities(all)

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