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FROM TRAITOR TO MARTYR: DRAWING LESSONS FROM THE DEATH AND BURIAL OF WANG JINGWEI, 1944

  • Jeremy E. Taylor (a1)
Abstract

Based on recently reopened files and publications in Nanjing, as well as published and newsreel accounts from the 1940s, this paper represents the first scholarly analysis of the rituals surrounding the death and burial of Wang Jingwei in Japanese-occupied China. Rather than locating this analysis purely in the literature on the history of the Second Sino-Japanese War (1937–45), however, this paper asks what Wang Jingwei's Re-organized National Government might tell us about personality cults in the political culture of modern China. While Wang's burial drew heavily on the precedent of Sun Yat-sen's funerals of the 1920s, it also presaged later spectacles of public mourning and posthumous commemoration, such as Chiang Kai-shek's funeral in 1975 in Taipei. In focusing on this one specific event in the life of a “puppet government,” this paper hopes to reignite scholarly interest in the study of “dead leaders” and their posthumous lives in modern Chinese history more generally.

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This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives licence (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/), which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is unaltered and is properly cited. The written permission of Cambridge University Press must be obtained for commercial re-use or in order to create a derivative work.
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Research for this paper was made possible through the COTCA Project and received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program (Grant Number 682081). I thank the staff at the Second Historical Archives in Nanjing, the Nanjing Library, the East Asia Library at Stanford University, and the Hoover Institution for their assistance during my research. An earlier version of this paper was presented as part of a wider panel on the posthumous commemoration of dead leaders at the Association for Asian Studies Annual Conference in Toronto, in March 2017. I thank Professor Barbara Mittler and Professor Sumathi Ramaswamy for inviting me to take part in this panel, encouraging me to write this paper, and providing comments on earlier versions. I also thank Dr Charles Musgrove, and the two reviewers, for comments on earlier drafts. Any errors are, of course, my own.

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1 Jui-te, Chang, “The Politics of Commemoration: A Comparative Analysis of the Fiftieth-Anniversary Commemoration in Mainland China and Taiwan of the Victory in the Anti-Japanese War,” in Scars of War: The Impact of Warfare on Modern China, edited by Lary, Diana and MacKinnon, Stephen (Vancouver: UBC Press, 2001), 136–60. As Chang notes, Li Peng 李鹏 made reference to wartime collaboration in September 1995 as a means of attacking the Taiwan independence movement: “History repeatedly demonstrates that anyone who tries to lean on foreigners to divide and betray the mother country will be thoroughly discredited,” 139.

3 For an account of the September 3 celebrations in Beijing, see Delury, John, Smith, Sheila A., Repnikova, Maria, and Raghavan, Srinath, “Looking Back on the Seventieth Anniversary of Japan's Surrender,” Journal of Asian Studies 74.4 (November 2015): 797820.

4 Brook, Timothy, Collaboration: Japanese Agents and Local Elites in Wartime China (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 2007); Zanasi, Margherita, Saving the Nation: Economic Modernity in Republican China (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2006). The classic work from the 1970s is Boyle, John Hunter, China and Japan at War, 1937–1945: The Politics of Collaboration (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1972).

5 This is true of the literature in both Chinese and English. For an example of Wang-era “intrigue” literature in Chinese, see Sha Ping 沙平, “Wang Jingwei si yin zhi mi” 汪精卫死因之谜 (The secrets behind the cause of Wang Jingwei's death), Dang'an tiandi (April 2007): 14–18; for an example of similar scholarship in English, see Yick, Joseph, “Communist-puppet Collaboration in Japanese-occupied China: Pan Hannian and Li Shiqun, 1939–1943,” Intelligence and National Security 16.4 (2001): 6188.

6 Dejin, Cai 蔡德金, Lishi de guaitai: Wang Jingwei guomin zhengfu 历史的怪胎 :汪精卫国民政府 (Freak of history: The Wang Jingwei National Government) (Guilin: Guangxi Shifan Daxue Chubanshe, 1993).

7 For a recent example, see Mitter, Rana, China's War with Japan, 1937–1945: The Struggle for Survival (London: Allen Lane, 2013), 370.

8 The debate on this is best summed up in Brook, Timothy, “Hesitating before the Judgment of History,” Journal of Asian Studies 71.1 (February 2012): 103–14.

9 Such as that found in Hung, Chang-tai, Mao's New World: Political Culture in the Early People's Republic (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2011).

10 Boyle, China and Japan at War, 322–23.

11 Harrison, Henrietta, The Making of the Republican Citizen: Political Ceremonies and Symbols in China, 1911–1929 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000), 134.

12 Nedostup, Rebecca, Superstitious Regimes: Religion and the Politics of Chinese Modernity (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Asia Center, 2009), 280.

13 Barmé, Geremie R., “For Truly Great Men, Look to This Age Alone: Was Mao a New Emperor?,” in A Critical Introduction to Mao, edited by Cheek, Timothy (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010), 243–72.

14 Major examples of which are found in collections such as Barrett, David P. and Shyu, Larry, eds., Chinese Collaboration with Japan, 1932–1945: The Limits of Accommodation (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2002).

15 This is a point to which I shall return (with reference to the relevant literature) in the conclusion.

16 See, for example, Barrett, David P., “The Wang Jingwei Regime, 1940–1945: Continuities and Disjunctures with Nationalist China,” in Chinese Collaboration with Japan, 1932–1945: The Limits of Accommodation, edited by Barrett, David P. and Shyu, Larry (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2002), 102–15.

17 Taylor, Jeremy E., “Republican Personality Cults in Wartime China: Contradistinction and Collaboration,” Comparative Studies in Society and History 57.3 (July 2015): 665–93.

18 Harrison, Making of the Republican Citizen, 136.

19 Including those produced for an international market. A new English-language edition of Sun's Three Principles of the People 三民主義, with a preface in Wang's name, was published in January 1943 by the Ministry of Publicity, for example (possibly to coincide with the RNG's declaration of war on the Allies that same month). Xuanchuanbu gongzuo baogao 宣傳部工作報告, January 1943. Second Historical Archives (Nanjing): 2003-1-2034.

20 On collaborationist nationalism and ownership of Sun's physical remains, see Zanasi, Margherita, “Globalizing Hanjian: The Suzhou Trials and the Post-World War II Discourse on Collaboration,” American Historical Review 113.3 (2008): 731–51.

21 On new regulations drafted in 1943 by the New Citizens Movement Committee (Xin guomin yundong weiyuanhui) governing modes of dress and behavior at the mausoleum, see Second Historical Archives (Nanjing): 2003-1-2082.

22 Shoudu zaolin yundong jinian kan 首都造林運動紀念刊 (Special commemorative issue on the capital forestry campaign) (Nanjing: Nanjing tebie shi zhengfu, 1941). The RNG's “forestry campaign” around the mausoleum was officially inaugurated on the 16th anniversary of Sun's death.

23 Poon, Shuk-wah, Negotiating Religion in Modern China: State and Common People in Guangzhou (Hong Kong: The Chinese University Press, 2011), 7. See also Ho, Virgil, “Martyrs of Ghosts? A Short Cultural History of a Tomb in Revolutionary Canton, 1911–1970,” East Asian History 27 (June 2004): 99138.

24 Images of foreign dignitaries (e.g., from the Indian National Army) paying their respects at the site are included in “Guangdongsheng Da Dongya qingnian dahui” 廣東省大東亞青年大會 (The Greater East Asia Youth Convention in Guangdong), Dong Ya lianmeng huabao (The Toa Pictorial) 3.11 (December 1943): no page numbers.

25 Zhongguo canzhan yi lai dashi xiezhen zhuanji 中國參戰以來大事寫真專輯 (An album of photographs of major events in China since the [RNG's] declaration of war [on the allies]) (Nanjing: Zhongyang Dianxunshe, 1944), 82.

26 Guomin li 國民曆 (Citizens’ calendar) (Nanjing: Xingzhengyuan Jiaoyubu, 1941), 98–100.

27 Nedostup, Rebecca, “Burying, Repatriating, and Leaving the Dead in Wartime and Postwar China and Taiwan, 1937–1955,” Journal of Chinese History 1 (2017): 111–39 (esp. 115–16). Though it lies beyond the scope of this paper, future studies may go further in determining any causal link between the commemoration of martyrs in occupied Nanjing and in unoccupied Chongqing at this point in the war.

28 Yang, Zhiyi, “The Road to Lyric Martyrdom: Reading the Poetry of Wang Zhaoming (1883–1944),” Chinese Literature: Essays, Articles, Reviews 37 (2015): 136.

29 See, for example, Chen, Jianyue, “Chen Gongbo: A National Collaborator or a Collaborationist Nationalist? A Case Study of Chinese Wartime Collaborationism,” The Chinese Historical Review 13.2 (2006): 300.

30 Such as Bunker, Gerald E., The Peace Conspiracy: Wang Ching-wei and the China War, 1937–1941 (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1972), 131–36.

31 Itoh, Mayumi, The Making of China's War with Japan: Zhou Enlai and Zhang Xueliang (London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2016), 97.

32 “Wang zhuxi banian qian liudan, anran quchu” 汪主席八年前留彈安然取出 (A bullet left in Chairman Wang eight years ago is safely extracted), Zhonghua huabao 2.1 (February 1944): 2–3.

33 Later in the war, as Wang's health deteriorated, Wang's rivals in Chongqing attempted to spread rumors that the real cause of Wang's maladies were two further assassination attempts during the war, this time at the hands of his own guards. According to this theory, it was the second such attempt which necessitated his removal to Japan for medical treatment in the spring of 1944. The National Archives (London): WO 208/181.

34 Jiangcai, Zhang 張江裁, Wang Jingwei xiansheng xingshilu 汪精衛先生行事錄 (A true record of Mr Wang Jingwei's activities) (Dongguan: Baiyuantang, 1943), 8.

35 On this, see Brose, Benjamin, “Resurrecting Xuan Zang: The Modern Travels of a Medieval Monk,” in Recovering Buddhism in Modern China, edited by Kiely, Jan and Jessup, J. Brooks (New York: Columbia University Press, 2016).

36 Xuanchuanbu gongzuo baogao, February 1944. Second Historical Archives (Nanjing): 2003-1-2034.

37 Tworek, Heidi, “Magic Connections: German News Agencies and Global News Networks, 1905–1945,” Enterprise and Society 15.4 (December 2014): 672686.

38 Xuanchuanbu gongzuo baogao, May 1944. Second Historical Archives (Nanjing): 2003-1-2033.

39 Bunker, Peace Conspiracy, 280.

40 The classic written expression of this cult can be found in Anon., Women de lingxiu, Wang Zhuxi 我們的領袖:汪主席 (Our leader Chairman Wang) (Nanjing: Nanjing tebie shi zhengfu xuanchuanchu, 1942).

41 “Tingshen fenqi heping jiuguo de Wang Zhaoming” 挺身奮起和平救國的汪兆銘 (Wang Zhaoming, who stands up for the struggle and saves the nation through peace), Huawen Daban meiri (Kabun Osaka Mainichi) 3.5 (September 1939): 4.

42 Women de lingxiu, Wang Zhuxi, 4.

43 Indeed, at youth camps held under the movement, members were required to partake in public exhortations of support for Wang while engaging in physical fitness routines. “Wang Wei xin guomin yundong diyijie qingshaonian tuan shuqi jixun ying xunlian gangyao, deng.” 汪偽新國民運動第一屆青少年團暑期集訓營訓練綱要等 Second Historical Archives (Nanjing): 2003-1-2092.

44 Shenghong, Jing 经盛鸿, Nanjing lunxian banian shi (xia) 南京沦陷八年史(下) (The eight year history of Nanjing's occupation, Part II) (Beijing: Shehui kexue wenxian chubanshe, 2013), 797.

45 See, for example, Jiangcai, Zhang, Wang Jingwei xiansheng gengxu mengnan shi lu 汪精衛先生庚戌蒙難史錄 (The true record of Mr Wang Jingwei's tribulations in 1910) (Nanjing: 1940).

46 The story is retold in Krebs, Edward S., “Assassination in the Republican Revolutionary Movement,” Ch'ing-shi wen-t'i 4.6 (December 1981): 4580.

47 On RNG fears about political assassination, see Joseph Yick, “Communist-puppet Collaboration.”

48 The phrase guibaxi (meaning “trickery”, but including the character for ghost) was commonly used to describe Wang's behavior in writing critical of him. See, for example, Li San 李三, “Ri kui Wang ni de guibaxi” 日魁汪逆的鬼把戲 (The trickery of Japanese puppet turncoat Wang), Xin Daoli (June 1940): 4.

49 KMT Party Archives (Taipei): yi ban 157/21 (KDIR 00255454).

50 “Da si Wang Jingwei” (Beat Wang Jingwei to death), Kang wei jun huakan 1 (March 1939): 2.

51 Such images were featured in collections such as Daren, Xu 徐達人, Wang Jingwei ma Wang Zhaoming 汪精衛罵汪兆銘 (Wang Jingwei curses Wang Zhaoming) (Cunjin Qiao: Lingnan chubanshe, 1939).

52 Tong di woguo de Wang Zhaoming (Wang Jingwei, who endangers the country by communicating with the enemy) (n.p.: 1939), 2–10. KMT Party Archives (Taipei): yiban 496/136 (KDIR 00249715).

53 Taylor, “Republican Personality Cults,” 682.

54 聞少華, Wen Shaohua, Cong lieshi dao hanjian: Wang Jingwei zhuan 從烈士到漢奸:汪精衛傳 (From martyr to traitor: A biography of Wang Jingwei) (Hong Kong: Zhonghua Shuju, 2013), 331.

55 “Guanyu Wang Zhuxi shishi jinian guangbo” 關於汪主席逝世紀念廣播 (Concerning broadcasts commemorating the death of Chairman Wang), Xuanchuanbu gongzuo baogao, November 1944. Second Historical Archives (Nanjing): 2003–1–2033.

56 Zhongyangshe 中央社, “Xian ci” 獻詞 (Words of offering), Jing bao (Nanjing), November 23, 1944. The reference to “yi mao” (the fifty-second year on the Chinese sexagenary cycle)—which corresponds to the year 1915—is almost certainly a mistake in this text. I suspect the author confused this with yi si, or forty-second year on this cycle, which corresponds with 1905, the year in which Wang is reported to have joined the Tongmenghui 同盟會.

57 According to Zijia, Zhu 朱子家, Wang zhengquan de kaichang yu shouchang (shang) 汪政權的開場與收場 (上) (The beginning and end of the Wang regime, Part I) (Taipei: Fengyun shidai, 2012), 408–9.

58 Zhu, Wang zhengquan, 408–9.

59 “Chen dai zhuxi jiwen” 陳代主席祭文 (Oration by the temporary Chairman Chen), Changjiang huakan 4.1 (January 1945): no page numbers.

60 “Ri Tianhuang zang Wang gu zhuxi zui gao rongyu juhua zhangjingshi” 日天皇贈汪故主席最高榮譽菊花章頸飾 (The Japanese emperor presents the late Chairman Wang Jingwei with the highest honor, the Collar of the Grand Order of the Chrysanthemum), Jing bao, November 13, 1944.

61 Shishi tongxun: Jing'ai Wang Zhuxi 時事通訊:敬愛汪主席 (Topical news: Mourning Chairman Wang) (Nanjing: Zhongyang dianxunshe, 1944), 9.

62 See, for example, “Wang Zhuxi shengping jilüe” 汪主席生平紀略 (An account of Chairman Wang's life), Zhong bao, November 13, 1944.

63 A lengthy biographical article along these lines was published in Zhong bao 中報 on November 24, 1944, under the title “Cong gu zhuxi anzang xiangdao gengxu cishe zheng wang shijian” 從故主席安葬想到庚戌刺攝政王事件 (From the burial of the late Chairman Wang to the 1910 plot to assassinate the Prince Regent).

64 A state funeral had been arranged for Lin Sen, the Chongqing Nationalists, head of state, only a year before Wang's death. Despite the fact that Lin was in no way associated with the RNG, his funeral was certainly known about in the RNG. It is thus highly likely that this event was taken into consideration when plans were made for Wang's burial. See “China: The Wishes of Lin Sen,” Time Magazine, August 30, 1943.

65 “Ai wo gu zhuxi anzang” 哀我故主席安葬 (The burial of our lamented late Chairman), Zhong bao, November 19, 1944; see also “Benzhou yundong bisai tingzhi juxing” 本週運動比賽停止舉行 (Sporting competitions to cease this week), Shen bao, November 14, 1944.

66 Such details are included in Second Historical Archives (Nanjing): 2003-1-5834.

68 “Wang gu zhuxi anzang dadian” 汪故主席安葬大典 (The burial of the late Chairman Wang), Changjiang huakan 4.1 (January 1945): no page numbers.

69 Which may explain regime claims that “the people of the nation were speechless in their grief.” This phrase (“guoren zai wuyan de beitong zhong” 國人在無言的悲痛中) appears in the RNG sponsored pictorial Changjiang huakan (January 1945) in an issue dedicated to reports in the funeral.

70 Ōta's account of Wang's funeral is full of references to Wang and his parallels with, or connections to, Sun Yat-sen. See Ōta Unosuke 太田宇之助, “Ji Wang Zhuxi anzang dianli” 記汪主席安葬大禮 (On Chairman Wang's funeral), Zhengzhi yuekan 8.6 (1944): 15–16.

71 See, for instance, Bunker, Peace Conspiracy, 280.

72 The claim is made in “Wang Jingwei sihou miwen” 汪精衛死後祕聞 (Posthumous secrets about Wang Jingwei), Hanjian choushi (February 1945): 28–31. To be sure, the RNG narrative about Huanghuagang did stress the existence of national flowers (i.e., plum blossoms) at the Guangzhou site, though this did not necessarily mean that Meihuashan was purely derived from Huanghuagang. See Xin Guangzhou gailan 新廣州概覽 (The current state of new Guangzhou) (Guangzhou: Guangzhoushi Shehuiju, 1941), 56.

73 Maps published to aid mourners in locating Wang's tomb showed its location vis-à-vis both the Sun Mausoleum and the Ming tombs. See, for instance, “Yi dai weiren de anzangdi: Meihuashan” 一代偉人的安葬地:梅花山 (The resting place of a great man of our age: Meihuashan), Zhong bao, November 24, 1944.

74 Shishi tongqun, Jing'ai Wang Zhuxi, 9.

75 Cheng Jie 程杰 , “Minguo shiqi Zhongshan lingyuan meihua fengjing de jianshe yu yanbian” 民国时期中山陵园梅花风景的建设与演变 (The construction and changes to plum blossom scenery in the Sun Yat-sen Mausoleum area during the Republican era), Nanjing shehui kexue 2 (2011): 151–56.

76 “Kuaiyou daidian,” November 17, 1943. In Second Historical Archives (Nanjing): 2003-1-5834.

77 Zhou Anqing, for example, claims that Wang had seen similarities between the geopolitical situation of China in the mid 1940s and the world described in the Romance of the Three Kingdoms (Sanguo yanyi). See Anqing, Zhou 周安庆, “Wang Jingwei shi zenyang guizang Nanjing Meihuashan de” 汪精卫是怎样归葬南京梅花山的 (How was Wang Jingwei buried on Plum Blossom Mount), Dongfang shoucang 1 (2012): 116–18.

78 Though it lies beyond the scope of this paper to explore this further, the navy took pride of place amongst the RNG armed forces, and a good deal of RNG propaganda focused on the supposed strength of this Yangtze-headquartered force. It is perhaps more than coincidence that a portrait of Wang in his naval uniform (rather than in morning suit or lounge suit, which was a far more common way in which to present Wang under the RNG) was chosen to accompany his casket to Plum Blossom Mount.

79 de Crespigny, Rafe, Generals of the South: The Foundation and Early History of the Three Kingdoms State of Wu (Canberra: Australian National University Press, 1990).

80 Nedostup, Rebecca, “Two Tombs: Thoughts on Zhu Yuanzhang, the Kuomintang, and the Meanings of National Heroes,” in Long Live the Emperor! Uses of the Ming Founder across Six Centuries of East Asian History, edited by Schneewind, Sarah (Minneapolis: Society for Ming Studies, 2008), esp. 381–83.

81 For a typical example of writing which conflated Qin Kuai and Wang, see Hanhun, Li 李漢魂, “Yidai renyao de zuihou guisu” 一代人妖的最後歸宿 (The final fate of a demon of our age), in Wang ni Jingwei huaxiang 汪逆精衛畫像 (Turncoat Wang Jingwei's likeness) (Fuxing xin cun: Xin jianshe chubanshe, 1940), 4648.

82 “Tao Wang su jian yundong xuanchuan dagang” 討汪肅奸運動宣傳大綱 (Propaganda outlines for opposing Wang and traitors), April 1940. KMT Party Archives (Taipei): yiban 155/141 (KDR00254293). In this document, the advice was that such guixiang would depict both Wang and his wife Chen Bijun, and that these would be located in front of tombs for the “unnamed hero” (wuming yingxiong 無名英雄) in unoccupied China.

83 On the Qin Kuai statue in Hangzhou, see Donglan, Huang, “Shrines of Yue Fei: Spaces for creation of public memory,” Chinese Sociology and Anthropology 37.2–3 (2005): 74112; on a contemporary comparison between statues of Qin Kuai and Wang, see “Gei xiandai Qin Kuai tiexiang” 給現代秦檜鐵像(Iron statues for the modern-day Qin Kuai), Qiritan 10 (1946): 3.

84 “Wang fufu tiexiang ying jian yu hechu?” 汪夫婦鐵像應建於何處? (Where should iron statues of Wang Jingwei and his wife be placed?), Qianshao 1 (1940): 30.

85 A full page of such designs, and instructions on their use, can be found in Qingqi Manhua 44 (no date), held in a collection entitled “Zhong-Ri zhanzheng qijian shishi manhua” 中日戰爭期間時事漫畫 (Topical cartoons from the period of the Sino-Japanese War), Special Collections, East Asia Library, Stanford University.

86 This would not be the first attempt it made to do so. Leaflets distributed in 1939 supporting the Peace Movement (such as those found amongst collections within the British Museum, Japanese Collections: 2006, 0117, 0.1-109) sought to tar Chiang Kai-shek with the same Qin Kuai brush, and thus to liberate Wang from this comparison.

87 Shishi tongxun: Jing'ai Wang Zhuxi, 8–10.

88 As Joseph Yick points out, Guangzhou was essentially controlled by Wang's wife Chen Bijun (and her extended family) both before and after Wang's death. Yick, Joseph, “‘Self-serving Collaboration’: The Political Legacy of ‘Madame Wang’ in Guangdong Province, 1940–1945,” American Journal of Chinese Affairs 21.217 (October 2014): 217–34.

89 Shishi tongxun: Jing'ai Wang Zhuxi, 8–10.

90 This claim about the nature of Wang's resting place in Nanjing is made in Mitter, China's War with Japan, 357.

91 The Central News Agency in Taipei now holds one of the few (and most regularly reproduced) images of the tomb, taken in 1945. Details about the dimensions of the tomb can be found in Zhou Anqing, “Wang Jingwei shi zenyang gaizang Nanjing Meihushan de.”

92 Yan, Zhang 张燕, Nanjing minguo jianzhu yishu 南京民国建筑艺术 (Republican architectural art in Nanjing) (Nanjing: Jiangsu kexue jishu chubanshe, 2000), 104–5.

93 Wen Shaohua, Cong lieshi dao hanjian.

94 I have chosen to translate the term “jingshen” 精神 here as esprit rather than “spirit” so as to avoid references to the supernatural or ghostly understanding of the word “spirit” in English (which is not replicated in the Chinese “jingshen”).

95 “Zhuxi jingshen busi” 主席精神不死 (The Chairman's esprit will never die), Zhong bao, November 13, 1944.

96 “Wang gu zhuxi jingshen busi!” 汪故主席精神不死 (The late Chairman Wang's esprit will never die!), Jiangsu ribao, November 24, 1944.

97 Zhi, Yang 揚之, “Wang Zhuxi shishi yihou” 汪主席逝世以後 (After Chairman Wang has passed away), Qingshaonian 5.3 (1944): 3; see also “Wang Zhuxi shishi hou de wenti” 汪主席逝世之後的問題 (The problem of what happens after Chairman Wang's death), Sanliujiu huabao 30.6 (1944).

98 Chan Cheong-Choo, Memoirs of a Citizen of Early XX Century China (1978), 133–34.

99 Two new collections of Wang's speeches (Wang Zhuxi yanlun zhengji 汪主席言論正集 and Wang Zhuxi yanlun xuji 汪主席言論續集) were published by the Ministry of Publicity in January 1945, for example. Xuanchuanbu gongzuo baogao, January 1945. Second Historical Archives (Nanjing): 2003-1-2032.

100 “Dao Wang Zhuxi shishi” 悼汪主席逝世 (Lamenting Chairman Wang's death), Shenbao yuekan 11 (1944): 1.

101 Taylor, Jay, The Generalissimo: Chiang Kai-shek and the Struggle for Modern China (Cambridge, Mass.: The Belknap Press, 2009), 585.

102 On popular beliefs (and official encouragement of them) that the Tangshan earthquake was cosmologically connected to the death of Mao Zedong in the PRC, see Baum, Richard, Burying Mao: Chinese Politics in the Age of Deng Xiaoping (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1994), 333.

103 Boorman, Howard L., “Wang Ching-wei: China's romantic radical,” Political Science Quarterly 79.4 (1964): 504–25. On the postwar public mood in the Yangtze River Delta region towards Wang, see Musgrove, Charles, “Cheering the Traitor: The Postwar Trial of Chen Bijun, April 1946,” Twentieth Century China 30.2 (2005): 327.

104 Hanjian choushi (February 1945): 28–31.

105 “Wang ni Jingwei de fenmu” 汪逆精衛的墳墓 (Wang Jingwei's tomb), Haijing 2 (1946).

106 “Wang ni fenmu zhahui mimi” 汪逆墳墓炸毀秘密 (The secret behind the destruction of Turncoat Wang's tomb), Xianghai huabao, May 27, 1946.

107 Kuang, Da 大狂, “Wang Jingwei fendun tou beijue” 汪精衛墳墩頭被掘 (Wang Jingwei's burial mound has been dug up), Xin Shanghai 9 (1946): 9.

108 Wakeman, Frederic Jr., “Revolutionary Rites: The Remains of Chiang Kai-shek and Mao Tse-tung,” Representations 10 (Spring, 1985): 146–93.

109 Nedostup, Superstitious Regimes.

110 Although Rudolph Wagner's reading of the Mao mausoleum comes close. See Wagner, Rudolph G., “Reading the Chairman Mao Memorial Hall in Peking: The Tribulation of the Implied Pilgrim,” in Pilgrims and Sacred Sites in China, edited Susan Naquin and Chün-fang Yü (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1992), 378423.

111 Taylor, Jeremy E., “The Production of the Chiang Kai-shek Personality Cult, 1929–1975,” The China Quarterly 185 (2006): 96110.

112 On this, see Wagner, “Reading the Chairman Mao Memorial Hall.”

113 I thank one of the reviewers of this article for pointing this out to me.

Research for this paper was made possible through the COTCA Project and received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program (Grant Number 682081). I thank the staff at the Second Historical Archives in Nanjing, the Nanjing Library, the East Asia Library at Stanford University, and the Hoover Institution for their assistance during my research. An earlier version of this paper was presented as part of a wider panel on the posthumous commemoration of dead leaders at the Association for Asian Studies Annual Conference in Toronto, in March 2017. I thank Professor Barbara Mittler and Professor Sumathi Ramaswamy for inviting me to take part in this panel, encouraging me to write this paper, and providing comments on earlier versions. I also thank Dr Charles Musgrove, and the two reviewers, for comments on earlier drafts. Any errors are, of course, my own.

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Journal of Chinese History 中國歷史學刊
  • ISSN: 2059-1632
  • EISSN: 2059-1640
  • URL: /core/journals/journal-of-chinese-history
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