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Full referenceA Correspondent, The Western Returned Students' Union. An Explanation (1919)
TypeJournal article
Author(s)A Correspondent
TitleThe Western Returned Students' Union. An Explanation
JournalNorth China Herald
Keywordsreturned student; organization; English; American; Shanghai; circulation; China; network; women; public interest; nation; May Fourth Movement;

Differed from the existing "English Returned Students' Club" and the "American Students' Club" in Shanghai. 

Not a student organization as the word 'student' is generally understood. Its members included men and women of all generations, and in very walk of life, from a commercial agent to a high official, from 25 to 60 years of age.

The Chinese name of the organization Ou-Mei-Tung-Sha-Hwei is more descriptive than the English name. 

The organization was said to differed from conventional students organization because it had serious purpose: to promote the interest of its members and to render effective service to China; to unite all the returned students scattered all over the country. 

The organization had an office in the building of the newspaper Shenbao in Shanghai, and a general secretary who aimed at organizing the Shanghai members upon a better working basis, and at linking up other bodiers into a national organization for united action, so that students would exert their influence as a body and not as individuals. 

The creation of the organization should be situated within the context the recent crisis of the Paris Peace Conference and the growing awareness that Chinese students were not properly organized and were unprepared for leadership. The organization was established in reaction to other existing organization that were more or less in the nature of "chow" clubs. 

The article ended by deying the rumor that the Western Returned Students' Union had called for excommunicating the present Peking Government. 


July 5, 1919, p.43

The Western Returned Students' Union may be regarded as the equivalent in China of the Chinese Students' Alliance in the United States of America (on the Alliance, see Ye, Seeking Modernity, 2002, esp. chap.1). 

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