March of the Volunteers

From Academic Kids

"The March of the Volunteers" (Template:Zh-sp) is the national anthem of the People's Republic of China, written in the midst of the Sino-Japanese War (1937-1945) by the noted poet and playwright Tian Han (田汉) with music composed by Nie Er (聂耳). This composition is a musical march.

Origins as National Anthem

March of the Volunteers was written by Tian Han in 1934 for a play he was writing at the time. Popular stories suggest, however, that he wrote it on a tobacco paper after being arrested in Shanghai and thrown into a Kuomintang jail in 1935. The song, with a minor alteration, became the theme song of the patriotic film Sons and Daughters in a Time of Storm (风云儿女, 1935), a story about an intellectual who leaves to fight in the First Sino-Japanese War. It was one of many songs that were promoted secretly among the population as part of the anti-Japanese resistance. The song was released as an album by the Pathe label of EMI in 1935.

It was used as the national anthem for the first time in an international conference in February 1949 held in Prague, Czechoslovakia. At the time Peking (now Beijing) had recently come into the control of the Chinese Communists. There was controversy over the line "The Chinese nation faces its greatest peril". Historian Guo Moruo changed the line to "The Chinese people have come to their moment of emancipation" (中国民族到了大翻身的时候).

In June a committee was set up by the Chinese Communist Party to decide on an official national anthem. By the end of August the committee had received 6926 submissions. March of the Volunteers was suggested by painter Xu Beihong (徐悲鸿) and almost unaminously supported by the members of the committee. There was contention, however, over the issue of the third line. On this Zhou Enlai made the conclusive judgement: "We still have imperialist enemies in front of us. The more we progress in development, the more the imperialists will hate us, seek to undermine us, attack us. Can you say that we won't be in peril?" His view was supported by Mao Zedong and on 27 September 1949, the song became the provisional national anthem, just days before the founding of the People's Republic of China.

Cultural Revolution and later history

During the Cultural Revolution, Tian Han was imprisoned, and the March of the Volunteers was therefore forbidden to be sung; as a result there was a period of time when The East is Red was used as the unofficial national anthem.

The March of the Volunteers was restored by the National People's Congress in 1978, but with different lyrics; however, these new lyrics were never very popular and even caused confusion [1] ( On 4 December 1982, the National People's Congress resolved to restore the original 1935 version by Tian Han as the official national anthem. Significantly the current lyrics do not mention either the Communist Party of China nor Mao Zedong and the reversion of the lyrics was symbolic of the downfall of Hua Guofeng and the cult of personality of Mao and the asendancy of Deng Xiaoping.

The National People's Congress made the song the official PRC anthem in a 2004 amendment of the Constitution of the People's Republic of China. The anthem is mentioned immediately after the national flag.

Although popular even among Nationalists during the Sino-Japanese War (1937-1945), the song was banned in Taiwan until the 1990s.

The anthem was officially performed in Hong Kong for the first time [2] ( following the handover of the territory to the PRC in 1997, and in Macau following the handover in 1999.

The anthem is written completely in Vernacular Chinese, while the "National Anthem of the Republic of China" is written in Classical Chinese.

Click to listen:

Lyrics (Current and Original)


Hanyu Pinyin

Qĭlái! Búyuàn zuò núlì de rénmen!
Bă wŏmen de xiěròu zhùchéng wŏmen xīn de chángchéng!
Zhōnghuá Mínzú dào le zùi wēixiăn de shíhòu,
Měigerén bèipò zhe fāchū zihòu de hŏushēng.
Qĭlái! Qĭlái! Qĭlái!
Wŏmen wànzhòng yīxīn,
Mào zhe drén de pàohuŏ, Qiánjìn!
Mào zhe drén de pàohuŏ, Qiánjìn!
Qiánjìn! Qiánjìn! Jìn!


Arise, ye who refuse to be slaves!
With our flesh and blood, let us build our new Great Wall!
The Chinese nationality has come to its time of greatest danger,
Each person must send out a final roar.
Arise! Arise! Arise!
Our great masses are of one heart,
Braving the enemy's gunfire, march on!
Braving the enemy's gunfire, march on!
March on! March on! On!

Lyrics (1978-1982)

前进! 前进! 进!

Qinjn! G mnzǔ yīngxingde rnmn,
Wěidde gōngchǎndǎng lǐngdǎo wǒmen jx chngzhēng.
Wnzhng yīxīn bēn xing gōngchǎnzhǔy mngtiān,
Jinsh zǔgo bǎowi zǔgo yīngyǒngde duzhēng.
Qinjn! Qinjn! Qinjn!
Wǒmen qiānqīu-wndi
Gāojǔ Mo Zdōng qzh, qinjn!
Gāojǔ Mo Zdōng qzh, qinjn!
Qinjn! Qinjn! Jn!

March on! People of all heroic nationalities!
Let us continue the Long March under the great Party's guidance,
Millions with but one heart toward a communist tomorrow,
Develop and protect the country, fight bravely.
March on, march on, march on!
We will for generations,
Raise high Mao Zedong's banner, march on!
Raise high Mao Zedong's banner, march on!
March on! March on! On!

External links

See also: Historical Chinese anthems

cs:Hymna Čínské lidové republiky de:Marsch der Freiwilligen es:La Marcha de los Voluntarios fr:La Marche des Volontaires id:Barisan Para Sukarelawan ms:Barisan Para Sukarelawan ja:中華人民共和国の国歌 pl:Hymn Chińskiej Republiki Ludowej sr:Марш добровољаца zh:义勇军进行曲


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