Talk:Rewi Alley

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Untitled[edit]

Yeah yeah, I know it's stalled. I got bogged in conflicting biographies - several of them were written by close friends of Alley, and a more recent one has accused them of Haigography. I decided to work on the article offline rather than live.

Input from someone more expert in 20th century chinese history would be welcome. dramatic 06:42, 11 Apr 2005 (UTC)

The Japanese invaded China "proper" in 1937. They had taken Taiwan in 1895 and Manchuria in 1932, but in 1937 they invaded the historic eighteen provinces of China. There has to be a way to make that distinction clear. I have tried. If someone else can make it clearer please do, but to say they invaded "China" in 1937 is inaccurate. Lao Wai 30 June 2005 08:24 (UTC)

citizen?[edit]

did he become a Chinese citizen? When? thanks Hmains 17:05, 23 July 2006 (UTC) read Alley's own autobiogrpahy published by the new world press--at 90: memoirs of my china years. the current introduction on his life is glarringly oversimplified with strong cold war anti-communist biase which belittles Alley the great ordinary man type humanist and fighter for a just cause.

I don't agree that the introduction is anti-communist. In fact it glosses over Alley's extreme leftist brand of Communism. He was a supporter of the Gang of Four, and publicly critical of New Zealand - including supporting the Communist war against New Zealand forces in Vietnam. That would presumably be the context for the otherwise meaningless reference to "The New Zealand government did not strip Alley of his passport and remained proud of his ties to important Party leaders", although to say that the NZ government was proud of this traitor and communist may be going too far.124.197.15.138 (talk) 07:24, 29 October 2010 (UTC)

The article makes mention the NZ Govt didn't strip Alley of his passport. Funny, as it isn't possible to do this under NZ law anyway. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 122.57.174.252 (talk) 10:40, 26 March 2013 (UTC)

Communism a "just cause", well I suppose some useful idiots (as Stalin called them) still believe that. New Zealand passports can indeed be cancelled under the Passports Act.Royalcourtier (talk) 07:48, 6 March 2014 (UTC)

Private life[edit]

The evidence for Rewi Alley being homosexual is not based on any document or any testimony from anyone (the sort of thing that tends to come out when a closeted homosexual dies). It seems to rest wholly on him having gone to live in Shanghai. It is true there was a tolerated homosexual subculture in Shanghai in the 1930s. There were plenty of other reasons to live there and it was world-famous for its heterosexual side. All of which was suppressed under Mao.

The reason for doubting the book is that Anne-Marie Brady shows a bitter hatred for Alley. She doesn't accept he could have genuinely viewed Mao's rule as a good thing, despite plenty of others taking the same view. She has to give him a corrupt motive, he made a deal to be allowed to say. Now why on earth should the Chinese Communists in their first reforming fervour have needed such a deal?

It's also a bit hard to understand why a practicing homosexual should have stayed in China after it became legalised in the West.

I'm not particularly bothered by the notion he might have been an idealistic homosexual who managed to avoid being noticed for 38 years in a highly intrusive and intolerant culture - Chinese in general do not approve of homosexuality. I just want to get the facts correct, there is no good evidence.

--GwydionM (talk) 19:03, 11 March 2008 (UTC)

Even funnier how if you read the article, it seems to suggest that (on top of being a Communist) Alley being homosexual (if he indeed was) would seem like such a bad thing or something... most of it sounds like neo-conservative and anti-Communist rant to me 205.250.61.203 (talk) 09:52, 28 April 2011 (UTC)

A "practicing" homosexual??? What kind of terminology is this??? — Preceding unsigned comment added by 14.201.122.39 (talk) 10:59, 12 April 2013 (UTC)

A notable sister called Gwendolen[edit]

Slstover tried to add a link - it would be Playcentre, the name in double square brackets. But there's nothing there currently about her. If it's correct, please add it, along with a reference, preferably printed.GwydionM (talk) 11:29, 20 September 2009 (UTC)

Make the portrait bigger?[edit]

The original is large, too large for an article. But something about twice the width of the current version would look nice, in my view. But I don't know how to set this. --GwydionM (talk) 18:18, 17 November 2011 (UTC)

Knighthood?[edit]

I would doubt that Alley was offered a knighthood in the 1950's. His prominence was only due to his being a militant communist - I rather thought that New Zealand governments in those days were anti-communist, and would regard him as a traitor.Royalcourtier (talk) — Preceding undated comment added 07:41, 6 March 2014 (UTC)