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Inscribing War Orphans’ Losses into the Language of the Nation in Wartime China, 1937–1945

  • M. Colette Plum
Part of the Palgrave Studies in the History of Emotions book series (Palgrave Studies in the History of Emotions)

Abstract

These are the opening lyrics to one of the many songs taught to war orphans during China’s War against Japan (1937–1945). Orphans in wartime children’s homes were organized by teachers and child relief workers to sing patriotic songs collectively, to raise morale and to inspire the children to participate in what was known in China as ‘the War of Resistance against Japan’. Orphans also sang patriotic songs on street corners as part of propaganda troops to inspire the masses to participate in the war effort and discourage collaboration with the Japanese. The rest of the lyrics of this particular song call the children to lead one another, hand-in-hand, to the battlefield, to fight the enemy and fight for their future freedom.

Keywords

Child Welfare Corporal Punishment Oral History Refugee Child Street Corner 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Notes

  1. 1.
    Xi Xinghai, ‘Qilai ba! Qilai ba! Zuguo de haizimen, qilai ba!’ [‘Stand Up! Stand Up! Children of the Ancestral Homeland, Stand Up! A Song Written for the War’], Yaolan (The Cradle) 2 (1995), 31.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Barbara Rosenwein defines ‘emotional communities’ as ‘social groups that adhere to the same valuations of emotions and how they should be expressed’ and as ‘groups of people animated by common and similar interests, values, and emotional styles and valuations’; Jan Plamper, ‘The History of Emotions: An Interview with William Reddy, Barbara Rosenwein, and Peter Stearns’, History and Theory 49(2) (2010), 237–265, here 253.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
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  4. 3.
    On refugee flight, see Stephen MacKinnon, ‘Refugee Flight at the Outset of the Anti-Japanese War’, in Diana Lary and Stephen MacKinnon (eds), Scars of War: The Impact of Warfare on Modern China (Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 2001), 118–134;Google Scholar
  5. R. Keith Schoppa, In a Sea of Bitterness: Refugees during the Sino-Japanese War (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2011).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
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    See Peter N. Stearns and Carol Z. Stearns, ‘Emotionology: Clarifying the History of Emotions and Emotional Standards’, American Historical Review 90 (4) (1985), 813–836.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
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    See Wu Yanyin, ‘Shishi jiuji ji jiaoyang nantong de yuanze yu yaodian’ [‘Principles and Essentials in the Rescue and Care of Refugee Children’], in Duli Chubanshe (ed.), Nanmin ertong de jiuji yu jiaoyang [The Rescue and Care of Refugee Children] (Chongqing: Zhengzhong shuju zong zazhi tuiguangsuo [Central Publishing House Magazine Popularization Division], 1938), 26.Google Scholar
  8. 7.
    Jun Hui, ‘Xiegei nantong baoyu gongzuozhe’ [‘Letter to Childcare Workers Working with Refugee Children’], Funü Shenghuo [Women’s Life] 6(9) (1938), 91.Google Scholar
  9. Reprinted in Jin Futang (ed.), Kangri fenghuo zhong de yaolan [The Cradle during the Flames of the War of Resistance] (Beijing: Zhongguo Funü Chubanshe [China Women’s Press], 1991), 90–91.Google Scholar
  10. 8.
    Fan Renyu, ‘Zenyang cong liuwang zhuandao jiuwang?’ [‘How Do We Go from Being in Exile to Being Saved from Extinction?’], Nanmin Zhoukan [Refugees Weekly] 5 (12 May 1938), 3.Google Scholar
  11. 9.
    Chen Heqin, ‘Zenyang jiao xiaohaizi’ [‘How to Teach Children’], in Duli Chubanshe (ed.), Nanmin ertong de jiuji yu jiaoyang [The Rescue and Care of Refugee Children] (Chongqing: Zhengzhong shuju zong zazhi tuiguangsuo [Central Publishing House Magazine Popularization Division], 1938), 50–51.Google Scholar
  12. 10.
    For more on the state’s uses of family-free children, see M. Colette Plum, ‘Orphans in the Family: Family Reform and Children’s Citizenship during the Anti-Japanese War, 1937–1945’, in James Flath and Norman Smith (eds), Beyond Suffering: Recounting War in Modern China (Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 2011), 186–206.Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Xu Jingping, ‘Huiyi zhanshi ertong baoyuhui’ [‘Remembering the Wartime Association for Child Welfare’], in Futang Jin (ed.), Kangri fenghuo zhong de yaolan, 242.Google Scholar
  14. 18.
    Yuan Zengxin, ‘Shilun zhanshi ertong baoyuyuan zhong de kangri fuchou jiaoyang’ [‘Regarding War of Resistance Revenge Education in Wartime Children’s Homes’], Baoyusheng Tongxun [Newsletter for Children’s Home Alumni] 1 (1997),16–18.Google Scholar
  15. 20.
    Lu Zhuanji, ‘Zhanshi ertong de yanghu wenti’ [‘Problems with the Care of Children during Wartime’], Dongfang zazhi [Eastern Miscellany] 36(1) (1939), 82.Google Scholar
  16. 32.
    For more on child labour in wartime children’s homes, see M. Colette Plum, ‘Lost Childhoods in a New China: Child-Citizen-Workers at War, 1937–1945’, European Journal of East Asian Studies 11 (2) (2012), 237–258.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 33.
    Jin Jingshan, ‘Chuanliuyuan de laodong jiaoyu’ [‘Labor Education in Sichuan’s No. 6 Children’s Home’], Baoyusheng Tongxun [Newsletter for Children’s Home Alumni] 4(13) (1997), 25.Google Scholar
  18. 36.
    Lu Zhuanji, ‘Zhanshi ertong de ying yang wenti’ [‘Nutritional Problems of Wartime Children’], Dongfang Zazhi [Far Eastern Miscellany] 36(1) (1 February 1938), 82.Google Scholar
  19. 39.
    Interview with Mei Wuli, Chengdu (20 September 2002). See also Lin Dedao, ‘Sichuan fenhui Diliu Baoyuyuan jieshao’ [‘An Introduction to the Sichuan Chapter, Number Six Children’s Home’], Baoyusheng Tongxun (Newsletter for Children’s Home Alumni) 4(13) (5 December 1997), 2.Google Scholar
  20. 44.
    Wu Nansheng. ‘Yantao zhanshi ertong baoyu yundong lishi de wo jian’ [‘A Discussion of My Views on the Wartime Child Relief Movement’], Yaolan [The Cradle] 1 (1995), 9–10.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© M. Colette Plum 2015

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  • M. Colette Plum

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