Chiang Kai-Shek's Secret Past: The Memoir of His Second Wife, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Chiang Kai-Shek's Secret Past

The Memoir of His Second Wife, 1st Edition

By Ch'en Chieh-ju

Routledge

312 pages

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Hardback: 9780367007782
pub: 2018-09-18
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pub: 2019-06-10
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Description

This engrossing memoir tells the fascinating story of one of China's great leaders during the Nationalist revolution of the 1920s and of the woman who paid a staggering price so that he could attain his ambition. The tale begins in 1919 when the thirty-two-year-old Chiang Kai-shek met the naïve thirteen-year-old whom he would call Ch'en Chieh-ju. He pursued her relentlessly for two years until she finally agreed to marry her brash and forceful suitor. Chieh-ju was at her husband's side constantly for the seven years of their marriage, which enabled her to chronicle with immediacy and vivid detail his single-minded pursuit of power in the Kuomintang (KMT). So explosive were her revelations that the KMT used threats and bribes to block U.S. publication plans in the 1960s. Now, her long-suppressed memoir finally reveals Chiang Kai-shek's human side, which has been shrouded in myth. Chiang Kai-shek emerges as a lustful, ill-tempered, quarrelsome, stubborn, and boundlessly ambitious man. In pursuit of his goals, he abandoned the young wife he seemingly loved to make a politically expedient alliance with Soong Mei-ling, now famed as Madame Chiang. Despite his betrayal, Chieh-ju's love for her husband is clearly evident. She paints here a stirring portrait of their personal life as well as of the infighting and intrigue that marked her husband's early political career. Above all, her story conveys a keen sense of the texture of upper-class life in the China of that period, a quality academic studies rarely capture.

Table of Contents

A Brief Historical Foreword -- Editor's Note -- Introduction -- Author's Note -- A Young Girl in Shanghai -- The Pursuit -- Matchmaking and Courtship -- Our Wedding -- Honeymoon -- The Dragon's Pulse -- Two “Sons” -- Soochow -- Canton and the General -- Quarrels with Dr. Sun -- Rebellion and Reversal -- “Living Angel Liu” -- Soviet Friendship -- The Whampoa Military Academy -- Dr. Sun’s Last Journey -- Chiang Moves Ahead -- Life at the Academy -- The Chung shan Boat Incident -- The Dinner Party -- The Blue Shirts -- Northern Expedition -- Private Life -- The Ordeal -- Chiang’s Father -- The Great Intrigue -- Nanking -- My Exile

About the Author

Ch'en Chieh-ju was the wife of Chiang Kai-shek from 1921 to 1927. Lloyd E. Eastman was professor of history and Asian studies at the University of Illinois. Ch'en Chieh-ju was the wife of Chiang Kai-shek from 1921 to 1927. Lloyd E. Eastman was professor of history and Asian studies at the University of Illinois. Ch'en Chieh-ju was the wife of Chiang Kai-shek from 1921 to 1927. Lloyd E. Eastman was professor of history and Asian studies at the University of Illinois. Ch'en Chieh-ju was the wife of Chiang Kai-shek from 1921 to 1927. Lloyd E. Eastman was professor of history and Asian studies at the University of Illinois.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
POL054000
POLITICAL SCIENCE / World / Asian
SOC053000
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Regional Studies