Chang Chien’s Ideas and Activities on Constitutional Monarchy
- Shun-chih Sun
AbstractChang Chien was born on July 1st in 1853 in Haimen Kiangsu and died on August 24th in 1926 in Nant’ung Kiangsu. Chang Chien’s ideas and activities on constitutional monarchy are significant and thus this article is to examine them.
Constitutional monarchy, according to Chang Chien, was a separation of the three-power political system under an emperor. In order to accomplish constitutional monarchy, local self-government should be strengthened and therefore without local self-government, constitutional monarchy was impossible to be really achieved.
Special characteristics of Chang Chien’s constitutional thought can be categorized as: (1) constitutional monarchy is related to industry, education and local self-government; (2) He prefers to middle-way, reform, and golden means.
Chang Chien had played a very important role in the constitutional movement. In the gestation period of 1904-1906, he acted behind the scene to push the Ch’ing government to adopt constitutionalism; In the developing stage of 1907-1911, he advocated the petition-for-a-parliament movement and as a result the Ch’ing government shortened the preparation period toward constitutional government by three years or so.
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- Jenny ZhangEditorial Assistant