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The Vision of Modernisation

Confucian scholar-activists led resistance to French domination in the late nineteenth century. Educated in the Confucian tradition, Phan Boi Chau (1867-1940) was one such nationalist.

Phan Boi Chau

  • Phan Boi Chau became a major figure in the anti-colonial resistance.

  • He formed the Revolutionary Society (Duy Tan Hoi) in 1903, with Prince Cuong De as the head.

  • Phan Boi Chau met the Chinese reformer Liang Qichao(1873-1929), in Yokohama in 1905.

  • Under the strong influence and advice of Qichao, Phan’s most influential book, The History of the Loss of Vietnam was written.

Others who were influenced by the democratic ideals of the West did not want a wholesale rejection of Western civilisation. They accepted the French revolutionary ideal of liberty but they charged the French for not abiding by the ideal. The French were demanded to set up legal and educational institutions, and develop agriculture and industries.

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