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Revisiting the Sichuan Army: Legend under the Power


The Sichuan Army during the Second Sino-Japanese War (1937-1945) is always a popular topic in Chinese academia, while the Western historians rarely discuss its significance. When I first begin my research two years ago, I tried to restore the significance of the Sichuan Army to make it recognized to the Western scholarship. However, after searching the primary sources of the army, I realized that they were simply portrayed as nationalistic and patriotic. I began to deepen my research by combining the materials from the Communist Government, the Nationalist Government, the local archives, and the oral history from both educated and uneducated soldiers. Upon my research, I find that the Sichuan Army is a complex subject to explore. In fact, besides the contribution to the war, the Sichuan Army reveals not only the political struggle between Chiang Kai-shek and the warlords from the top level, but also the reactions of the Sichuan Army personnel to the war from below.

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