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The New Culture Movement Memorial Museum

Updated:2008-06-06 10:27 | Source:

  The museum is situated on Wusi Avenue,

  Dongcheng District. Built in 1916, it is a five-

  floor brick-and-wood building, whose plan looks like

  the letter I. It covers an area of 10,000 square

  meters. It is also known as the Red Building,

  because of the red bricks used for its main part. It

  was at first part of the school buildings of Peking

  University. Later it had served, at different

  periods, as students’ dormitory, the administrative

  office of the university, a library, and a teaching

  building for liberal arts. During the Japanese

  occupation, it was used as the headquarters of the

  Japanese gendarmerie, and its basement was used to

  imprison and torture revolutionaries and patriots.

  In August 1945, when Japan surrendered, Peking

  University was reinstated here. In April 2002, it

  was officially opened to the public as the Beijing

  New Culture Movement Memorial Museum.

  The Red Building played an important role in the

  history of the modern Chinese revolution. In 1917,

  shortly after he was appointed president of Peking

  University, Cai Yuanpei moved his office here. In

  Jan. 1918, Li Dazhao, one of the founders of the

  Communist Party of China, started to work here as

  the dean of the library and professor of economics.

  At the same time Lu Xun was working in the

  university as a professor of Chinese. Chen Duxiu,

  another founder of the party, was also a professor

  here in 1916. Many other renowned scholars, such as

  Qian Xuantong, Liu Bannong, Yang Changji, Hu Shi, Ma

  Xulun, Ma Yinchu, and Li Siguang, had also worked or

  taught here. Between August 1918 and March 1919, Mao

  Zedong worked here as secretary of the newspaper

  reading room.

  The Red Building is the cradle of May 4th Movement,

  which marked the beginning of efforts to build New

  Democracy in China. After the October Revolution in

  Russia, progressive intellectuals at Peking

  University began to study Marxism and publish the

  earliest Marxist newspapers and magazines in China.

  On May 4, 1919, protestors gathered in the Democracy

  Square behind the Red Building and marched towards

  Tiananmen. The movement, which swept the country,

  paved the way for the founding of the Communist

  Party of China two years later in terms of ideology

  and leadership. In 1919, Li Dazhao, Deng Zhongxia

  and others created in Peking University a Marxist

  society, which later became a communist society. It

  continued to profess itself as the Marxist Society

  until 1927.

  Today, the museum displays the New Culture Movement,

  Cai Yuanpei and Peking University, and periodicals

  published during the May 4th Movement period; it

  also displays the reproduction of Li Dazhao’s

  office, the reading room where Mao Zedong had

  worked, and the lecture rooms. In the TV room are

  played documentaries on May 4th Movement and the

  former residences of famous participants of the New

  Culture Movement.

  Address:No. 29, Wusi Street, Dongcheng District,

  Beijing

  (Source:

  http://www.ebeijing.gov.cn/Tour/ScenicSpots/)

Editor : Zhu Jia

Opening ceremony of Beijing Olympics