San Min Chu I

Album: National Anthems (1949)

Songfacts®:

  • "San Min Chu I" is the National Anthem of Taiwan; according to the 1997 edition of National Anthems of the World, the words are based on a speech by Sun Yat-Sen (1866-1925); the music was composed by Cheng Mao-Yun (1900-1957), and is arranged here by Huang Chih and W.L. Reed, the latter being one of the editors of the book.

    The anthem was adopted in 1949, and "The words San Min Chu I express Sun Yat-Sen's political philosophy of the Three People's Principles, ie Government of the people, by the people, and for the people."
  • Although the Chinese have produced more than their fair share of philosophers, the same cannot be said for statesmen; Sun Yat-Sen is a notable exception. Born to peasant stock, he moved to Hawaii in his teens where he learned English, and became a US citizen, immersing himself in the philosophy of the Founding Fathers and Abraham Lincoln, and developing the concept of San Min Chu I. His magnum opus is written as a series of lectures, and was translated into English as The Three Principles Of The People, which may be summed up succinctly as Nationalism, Democracy and Livelihood.

    Dr. Sun viewed government as a purely technical device where the people exercised the true political power, and our rulers served merely as technicians. Unfortunately, on Sun's death, although his successor, Chiang Kai-Shek was able to consolidate power, his government eventually gave way to the Communists, and in 1949 he retreated to the island of Taiwan, the Republic of Free China. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Alexander Baron - London, England, for above 2

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