Selected Historical and Political Portraits

  • Barry Turner
Part of the SYB Factbook series book series (SYB)


Sun Yatsen is considered by many as the father of modern China, who planned to return China to the ‘common people’. Born in or near the city of Guangzhou in Guangdong Province, he travelled to Hawaii in 1897 where he graduated from Oahu College. From Hawaii he returned to China and studied at the College of Medicine in Hong Kong. After a failed attempt at revolution, he travelled to Europe and then to Japan where he founded the ‘China Revolutionary League’. The League soon became active in such events as the 1906 rebellion in Hunan Province. In 1911 Sun Yatsen’s Revolutionary League was instrumental in an uprising in Wuchang. The League seized control of the government in what was to be called ‘Double Ten Day’ and proclaimed China a republic. On 1 Jan. 1912, Sun Yatsen was elected provisional president of the new republic. The birth of the republic was by no means that easy and in 1925 Sun Yatsen died having achieved less than he had hoped. His death created a power vacuum in Chinese politics that was filled by Chiang Kaishek.


Hunan Province Chinese Communist Party Great Northern Plain Nobel Peace Prize Nationalist Party 
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© Barry Turner 1999

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  • Barry Turner

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