Dr. Sun’s birthday, Nov 12, 2009

Members of the Sun Yat-sen Foundation and the Chinese Chamber of Commerce met on November 12th to honor Dr. Sun Yat-sen on his birthday at the Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Park in Chnatown, Honolulu, Hawaii. Dr. Sun spent his formative years studying first at Iolani School and then Oahu College, now known as Punahou School, which is the same high school that U.S. President B. Obama attended.

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Hong Kong: Where a Future Revolutionary Leader was Nurtured

By Francis Tsui     When Dr. Sun Yat-sen was reminiscing about his student days in Hong Kong during one of his visits to Hong Kong University in 1923, he remarked that years ago he “got the revolutionary ideas in this very place, in the colony of Hong Kong.” Skeptics may question whether Sun Yat-sen really meant what he said or was just saying this to capture and please his audience. Nonetheless, no serious study of Sun’s revolutionary background should overlook or trivialize his sojourn in Hong Kong from 1883 to 1895. Those twelve years were important fomative years in…

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Educating a Revolutionary: Sun Yat-Sen’s Schooling in Hawaii

By Alfred L. Castle     Sun Yat-sen (1866-1925) was the best known revolutionary proponent of a Chinese republic, both in China and abroad. Born of peasant stock near Canton, a cosmopolitan southern section of China, he was a Westernized Chinese. His Westernization had come from his residency and schooling in Hawaii, his medical studies in Hong Kong, and his organizational activities in the rapidly modernizing Japan. This background served him well as he traveled to gain support for China’s revolution. Sun Yat-sen’s intellectual legacy to those who followed him was fully formulated by the time of the Chinese Revolution…

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Sun Yat-Sen in China’s Heroic Tradition

By Loretta Pang     In a brief autobiography written in 1896, Sun Yat-sen asserted that he revered the sage kings Tang (reigned 1751-1739 BC?) and Wu (reigned 1121-1116 BC) from China’s distant past. As a young man, he also admired Hong Xiuchuan (AD 1814-1864), leader of the Taiping Rebellion, and identified with him to the extent that the friends with whom he discussed politics jokingly called him by that name. That Sun would single out these individuals as his personal heroes reveals as much about China’s heroic tradition as it does about Sun, who himself would become a heroic…

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The “South” in Chinese History

By D. W. Y .Kwok     In Chinese cultural awareness, the “South” is a composite term which acquired complexities and layers of meaning as her cultural geography expanded with the movement of history. Some of these meanings and connotations may be noted for the purposes of this brief treatment of the subject. First, north-to-south was from earliest Chinese history the principal orientation of any view of the south. Both cosmology and geography reinforce this view. While the North Polar Star serves as the guiding reference point of cosmic bearing, the Chinese compass has always been called “South-pointing needle (zinanzhen.)…

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Sun Yat-Sen and Hawaii

By William M. Zanella     When the Wuchang revolt of Oct. 10, 1911, the military launching of the Xinhai Revolution, broke out, Sun Yat-Sen was in America. He learned of these portentous events by reading about them in a newspaper while traveling by train from Denver to Kansas City. That the “Father of the Chinese Revolution” was abroad for one of the most momentous events in modern Chinese history is one of the many ironies of his revolutionary career. Titular leader of a revolution begun in his absence, Sun was destined to be forced to live outside of China…

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