May Fourth Movement remembered 100 years on

By Li Ruohan Source:Global Times Published: 2019/4/29 22:33:40

Students inspired to spur nation’s growth

Hundreds of students commemorate the 99th anniversary of the May Fourth Movement at Yuhuatai Memorial Park of Revolutionary Martyrs, in Nanjing, capital of East China's Jiangsu Province. The students are members of the Communist Youth League of China and the Young Pioneers of China. Photos: VCG

Various activities including seminars, writing competitions and volunteer services are being held in April among young Chinese workers and students, from primary school to college, to commemorate the upcoming 100th anniversary of the May Fourth Movement.

Students reached by the Global Times stressed that they are inspired by the spirits of their peers a hundred years ago, who devoted their lives to save the country, and it is their turn to help make China stronger.

China will hold a grand gathering to mark the centenary of the May Fourth Movement Tuesday morning at the Great Hall of the People in downtown Beijing.

President Xi Jinping, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and chairman of the Central Military Commission, will attend the event and deliver an important speech, the Xinhua News Agency reported Sunday. 

Special flag-raising ceremonies were held Monday at universities across the nation to commemorate the movement and boost patriotism.

Every two weeks, student societies at Guilin University of Technology hold a group study session on socialism theories and the role of young students in serving the country's development. 

In April and May, more than 32 activities, including singing competitions, knowledge contests, symposiums and cultural activities are scheduled to be held at the university in South China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region to mark the centenary of the movement. 

The spirit of the May Fourth Movement has inspired generations of young Chinese to contribute to the rejuvenation of the country, Zhou Guoqiao, head of the Communist Youth League of Guilin University of Technology, told the Global Times on Monday.

"By hosting such activities, we expect to further motivate young teachers and students to devote themselves and contribute their energy and wisdom to development at the local levels, especially in the underdeveloped regions such as western China," said Zhou.

In the coastal city of Qingdao, Shandong Province, speech and writing contests are held among students from primary and high schools to commemorate the centenary of the movement, the Qingdao Daily reported on April 21. At Peking University, where the movement was initially started in 1919, activities such as a 5.4-kilometer run were held recently. 

Just like the young students 100 years ago, students nowadays share the mission of building a strong country and to combine their pursuits of life with the needs of the country and the era, said Zhuang Deshui, a professor specializing in the study of public policy and social governance at Peking University.   

The essence of patriotism for young students in this new era is to devote themselves to the country's development, at a time when China faces very different challenges and international responsibilities than it did 100 years ago, Chinese scholars noted.

For the bigger goal 

The significance of commemorating the movement now is to encourage the young generation to connect their own destiny with the destiny of China and contribute their share to social development, said Zhou Jiaqi, a PhD student at the School of Journalism and Communication at the Renmin University of China. 

"It's the young generation's responsibility and mission in China. And we the young people should have the spirit of 'daring to be the first,'" Zhou said. "For me, patriotism means fulfilling my mission to tell China's story well and better deliver China's voice and values to the world." 

At a group study session of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee held on April 19, Xi stressed efforts to strengthen studies of the May Fourth Movement and its spirit, in order to motivate young people to make unremitting contributions to national rejuvenation.

Xi stressed the need to enhance "political guidance" on the young people and lead them to voluntarily uphold Party leadership and follow Party policies. 

 "It has been proved that only the leadership of CPC can better promote the social development of China, and the young students must follow the Party," said Zhuang. 

"While some foreign scholars said the CPC's governance of China cannot last for three generations, this idea has proved to be an illusion. The world also expects to see how the young generation, China's future leaders, will carry on with CPC's policy and governance philosophy," said Zhuang. 

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