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Posted on March 26th, 2012, by

May 4th Movement was a very influential movement that affected consistently the socioeconomic and political development of China and other Asian countries. At the same time, the role of the May 4th Movement can hardly be underestimated but views of specialists on the nature and role of this movement differ consistently. On the one hand, this movement may be viewed as an organized movement which just attempted to reveal the position of certain part of the society. Movement-members have their own views on the political development of China and Asia at large but they did not claim to the open revolutionary struggle and prepared the revolution as the true revolutionary movement does. On the other hand, some specialists, such as Bianco, stand on the ground that the May 4th Movement was a revolutionary movement, which attempted to launch the revolution and to complete it successfully.

In actuality, views on the May 4th Movement may vary consistently because this movement had a lot of supporters as well as opponents, who criticized severely the May 4th Movement and claimed that it was a revolutionary movement to the extent that its ultimate goal was the revolution but not the improvement of the life of average people. In this regard, Bianco develops the view on the May 4th Movement as the revolutionary movement. In fact, Bianco stands on the ground that the ultimate goal of the May 4th Movement was the change of the existing political system along with consistent, qualitative socioeconomic changes which could have improved substantially the standards of life of average people. In such a way, judging by its goals the movement could be viewed as the revolutionary.

However, it is important to point out that it is impossible to make a conclusion about the nature of the movement and its essence on the ground of its goals only. Any movement that aims at certain reforms and changes can be viewed revolutionary, but such a view on movements is erroneous. To put it more precisely, a truly revolutionary movement should have not only revolutionary goals but also means and intention to meet the revolutionary goals. In this regard, the May 4th Movement did focus on changes and promoted the idea of changes as essential for the establishment of the effective and democratic political and socioeconomic system. On the other hand, they did not really intend to carry out the revolution and they did not prepare clear and concise revolutionary plans.

In this regard, Bianco argues that the May 4th Movement always intended to carry out the revolution. First, the May 4th Movement set revolutionary goals. Second, they started to promote their ideas of changes, which was one of the major ways to the revolution because the movement attempted to find new supporters and to expand the support of the movement in the society. As a result, the movement counted for the public support. In addition, Bianco argues that the May 4th Movement probably attempted to conduct the revolution and prepared the ground for the revolution, in spite of its claims of being the movement which attempted to conduct a sort of enlightenment in the society.

Thus, taking into account all above mentioned, it is important to place emphasis on the fact that the May 4th Movement was a revolutionary movement, according to Bianco and this movement did aim at changes.

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