《漫话十九大》Episode6: Who introduced Marxism to China?
Li Dazhao isn’t a familiar name to many outside China, but in many ways he has been one of the country’s most influential figures over the past 100 years.
He was the man who introduced Marxism to China and co-founded the Communist Party of China (CPC).
Born of humble roots in Hebei Province in 1889, he learnt about socialism and Marxism while studying political economy in Japan, before returning to China and working as a professor and head librarian at Peking University.
After the 1917 Russian Revolution, he began writing about Marxism and the Bolshevik victory. He played a key role in developing and disseminating Marxist-Leninist thought in China: One of the young people he influenced was Mao Zedong, who used to work at the Peking University Library.
A leader of China's May Fourth Movement against imperialism and feudalism, his works had a major influence on Chinese revolutionary leaders.
In 1920, Li started a Marxism Research Society at Peking University, laying the basis for a new political party. He was one of the founders of the CPC in 1921.
Li was a strong supporter of cooperation between the CPC and the Kuomintang led by Dr. Sun Yat-sen, in a joint effort to fight against local warlords who took control of various parts of the country.
In 1927, Li was captured and killed by warlord Zhang Zuolin at the age of 38.