Updated 6 years 3 months ago

This is my service learning workspace. All of work as a Service Learning team of three will be posted here.

Our Service Learning partner's name is Li Zhi Yuan, he is of this year 69 years of age and is currently retired, he is the author of numerous novels.

As a result of this experience, I have learned more about my elder's family members, daily life, and vocation. I have learned more about how he spends his time and what he enjoys and have really connected with Mr. Li on a personal level.

As Li Ye Ye is the official author of the most detailed and longest desciption of Xizhou's history, I was able to learn a great deal, historically, about Xizhou. However, from him, I have also learned many more things about life in Xizhou and how one can grow and lie and die here while doing incredible things.

Unfortunately, I have not learned very much about 20th Century Chinese history as my Service Learning partner was dodging subtly such questions or answering them rather nonchalantly and not giving specific answers. However, I have more than compensated with information about his life and what it has entailed thus far.

My experience with Mr. Li Zhi Yuan, thanks to him, has been a very smooth and easy one. We were introduced by the very kind owner of the Golden Flower restaurant, Mr. Yang, on the first day of Service Learning research and he has been a steadfast and vastly interesting partner. We sat with him for the first time a couple of weeks ago and he was helpful and enthusiastic, seemingly very comfortable with being videoed, recorded, and gently interrogated. He has been very good with repeatedly answering the same questions multiple times on tape and always looks happy to see Erica, Orion, and I.

Mr. Li, I learned, is a talented writer with a passion for Mandarin and is intelligent despite his limited education due to his father's passing when he was fifteen. As the eldest of eight children, he had to take on responsibilities as the man of the house, having to search for employment as an adolescent. He has three children and grandchildren older than the three of us in university. Altogether, my experience with Li Zhi Yuan has been an exceedingly pleasant one and I anxiously await his viewing of our groups video.

My recommendations for future Microcampus students embarking on their Service Learning journey are:

1. Begin the editing process earlier, for it is the most time consuming of all the steps

2. Ensure that you have at least five absolutely perfect potential Service Learning partners lest they decide to back out halfway

3. Even if a potential Service Learning partner seems utterly okay with your filming them and asking them personal questions, do not be surprised or panic if they refuse towards the end of your given Service Learning time period.



  • humiliating time
  • fall of the Qing Dynasty (1600s)
  • kingdom falling apart 
  • internal pressures
  • rebellions
  • warlords
  • instability
  • distant from the people
  • external pressures: trading with others countries, no need to interact with other countries unless beneficial
  • numerous silk producing areas
  • large amount of crops
  • financially self-sufficient without internal control
  • huge trade deficit with England
  • British selling opium to China to settle debts: worked initially
  • Qing rulers addicted to opium: utterly down with this situation
  • significant proportions of the population addicted
  • forbidding England to sell opium: no use
  • lost conflict with the British
  • last 1850s: series of military humiliations
  • signed a collection of unequal treaties
  • ports going to various countries
  • Qingdao: German concession
  • Shanghai: French concession
  • led to the end of the Qing Dynasty over the course of the next 25-30 years
  • rebellion here: Hui minority took over governance
  • 1856-1872: Islamic rule, brought down by the Qing with local support
  • 'Jesus' kid brother': Hong Xiuquan, Taiping Kingdom Rebellion: nostalgic credibility (1850-1864): wanted to ban drugs, end prostitution, gender equivalence, no bound feet
  • Qing Dynasty: scapegoat, rebellions: look at how the common people rose up!
  • towards the end of Qing Dynasty, last emporer Puyi (8 years old)
  • Qing Dynasty: Manchurians, considered 'invading outsider leadership
  • Puyi: losing power at 12 years of age
  • university age young people: becoming their own country, against foreigners
  • creating something new Sun Yat-Sen: formed the Republic of China (Min Guo Shi Qi)
  • form of some sort of democracy
  • Sun Yat-Sen: created the Han concept (56 officially recognized minority groups) (1911)
  • unified people by creating this 'most-people-are-Han-Chinese-identity' concept
  • promoting nationalized identity
  • invented human construct, no actual genetic relation
  • unified China: Sun Yat-Sen, scattered country
  • Sun Yat-Sen: death, months later the military leadership attempted to take over and create military dictatorship
  • 1920s: strong split: no military dictatorship (not too much power in one party), two parties
  • 1. Chiang Kai Shek (Jiang Jie Shi) and his Guo Ming Dang (KMT)
  • 2. Mao Zhe Dong and his Communist Party (opposite JJS) (Chinese Communist Party: CCP) (Gong Chan Dang)
  • everyone support Sun Yat-Sen, only some people support CCP and/or KMT
  • who's following in the fathers footsteps
  • Chiang: very well in urban areas: money and influence
  • Mao: popular among the poor and disconnected, people who did not own land or own very much
  • Mao: power of the people
  • Chiang: power of the government and military
  • came together in civil war, fighting each other, communists in big trouble (good ideas that weren't doing very much)
  • Mao: end feet binding, gender equivalence, women: not property
  • Jiangxi Soviet: communist 'state' near the actual province today
  • Chiang: surrounded the Soviet, left a gap, beginning of the Long March
  • Chiang: control the east of China: communists scatter in the west
  • Mao: escape from Jiangxi Soviet: retreat
  • Deng Xiao Ping, Zhou En Lai: in the Long March
  • 50 thousand troops walking in this area, "We need food, shelter, and protection, thanks!"
  • negotiating with locals: appealing to people with their philosophies
  • building credibility: almost religious, spreading 'gospel'
  • we're going to create the People's Republic of China
  • strict communist discipline
  • Mao: heavily influenced by Marx's and Lenin's works
  • to give people the three options: when we win, after 10 years, you'll be an autonomous region (local control: said to western areas for hosting them), after ten years: a) be a part of the People's Republic of China, b) remain an autonomous region, c) secession (you can lead!) (1949)
  • spoiler: after they did win, within a couple of days, Mao sent a message, "Remember those two options? (notice: two options)"
  • lie about the 3 options: relation to the train station massacre
  • continues march: eventually gets to Yan'an in Shanxi, communist hanging out there (buying time)
  • 1937: more uninvited guests... The Japanese.
  • KMT and CCP: together against the Japanese, WWII
  • Japanese defeated in 1945
  • at this point: KMT: official government based in Nanjing
  • after the fall of Shanghai: KMT fled to Chongqing (temporary stronghold/capital)
  • Madame Chiang Kai Shek: spoke to Congress (we need your help and such)
  • 1945: WWII ends and Japanese flee, pocket of communist troops scattered around China: rise, won the war
  • Chiang: fled to Taiwan
  • October 1st, 1949: People's Republic of China!
  • priceless objects from former dynasties in Taiwan
  • Beijing: PRC
  • New China: founding of the PRC, "Liberation" or 解放
  • Republic of China: Taiwan's official name
  • Russia (USSR: Soviet Union) supportive of communist China (CCP) gave tremendous support (weapons, logistics, etc...)
  • USA: big supporters of ROC, USA and USSR obviously in opposition
  • first rules: equality laws for women
  • land reform laws and land distribution laws
  • "red" good element of society, no possessions or money
  • "black" bad elements of society, landlords and their children
  • good for vast majority of China
  • smaller work units and communes
  • Mao: wants to work with USSR, Soviet Union, "Nope." Large loss of face.
  • leaders not impressed with each other
  • major public works projects, environmental harms
  • tried to do away with superstition, tried to do away with foreign teaching, tried to do away with religion, inventory ethnic groups, simplified characters
  • approaching ten year mark: two options excersized
  • 100 Flowers Movement: let's get everyone's thoughts on the table, found all the intelluctuals (musicians, artists, philosophers, etc..), for a week everyone write bad and good things: ended very quickly after a month, followed by the anti-rightist movement, against people against the communists
  • the most brilliant or the most brilliant imprisoned
  • Great Leap Forward: massive disaster
  • 20-30 million people were killed mainly due to starvation
  • very clearly going very badly in the beginning, intensified due to disbelievers
  • or the '3 Years of Natural Disasters'
  • Mao: returned home and saw relatives obviously dying and starving
  • 1962: Great Leap Forwards ends and Mao stripped of his actual power (figurehead)
  • people let out of jail: those who had more economic intensive ideas
  • food on the table: booming economy
  • did not last for very long
  • Mao: went for a swim at age 72 across the Yangtze river: symbolic, "I'MMMM BAAAAAAAAAAAAAAACCCCKKKKKKK!"
  • Cultural Revolution!
  • Mao came back to power by a cult of personality
  • Liu Xiao Qi: died, Deng Xiao Ping: imprisoned
  • doctors cleaning, janitors performing surgeries
  • for ten years until 1976 (from 1966), millions of people not going to school, simply did not get educated
  • students starve and attack teachers
  • anyone in authority was considered a suspect (except for Mao)
  • destroyed anything western, destroyed anything artistic
  • 1976: death of Chairman Mao, 27 years of him being in charge
  • Hua Guo Feng: riding on Mao's name, "We're going to do whatever Mao did!"
  • Trial of the Gang of Four: Jiang Qing, Ling Biao (right hand man), Zhang Chunqiao, Wang Hongwen
  • 1980-1981: reform and opening, safe to think about interactions with the outside world, develop economy
  • 1989: Soviet Union collapse: tried to open economy and political structure, Tiananmen Square incident: massacre
  • then: greatest economic growth of any country ever, reform economy but not politics
  • people say '5000 years of Chinese history', scholars say '100 years of Chinese history repeated 50 times'



About This Learner

My name is Ryane and I am a fourteen year old student in SAS Puxi. My interest in Microcampus stemmed from a desire to participate in something outside of my sheltered metropolitan lifestyle where everything is done for me and I am painfully inexperienced. I have lived in Shanghai for eight years now but was born in Taipei, Taiwan to an English speaking family of six cousins and numerous relatives. I have left Xizhou and missing it most painfully, however, I am happy and excited for all future Microcampers and the amazing experience they will experience. Be good to T and Ms. Mai!