He was impressed by their mobility and flexibility, as well as the concern for their fellow soldiers' welfare. A curious thing happened to gung-ho as it spread, though — it started to be a little less earnest, taking on the meaning it has now, that someone’s a little too enthusiastic.
He spent time touring China, examining the cooperatives and slowly coming to believe that U.S. war with Japan was inevitable. “As a result, the Gung Ho Battalion and its personnel soon were referred to as the ‘gung ho bastards.’ ” Moe cites a 1952 glossary of Marine slang with the following definition: “GUNG HO. “As a result, the Gung Ho Battalion and its personnel soon were referred to as the ‘gung ho bastards.’ ”, Moe cites a 1952 glossary of Marine slang with the following definition: “GUNG HO. 工業合作社 was abbreviated, as many long Chinese proper nouns are, to the first character of each part, 工合. "As a result, the Gung Ho Battalion and its personnel soon were referred to as the 'gung ho bastards.' Tens of millions of people living around Shanghai flooded inland, becoming refugees in their own country. It was quite easy for foreigners to engage with activities in China and be part of a solution for addressing a serious problem like refugees.". And so, the phrase leaked its way into the English language. From there, it spread throughout the U.S. Marine Corps hence the association between the two, where it was used as an expression of spirit and into American society as a whole when the phrase became the title of a 1943 war film, Gung Ho!, about the 2nd Raider Battalion's raid on Makin Island in 1942. When I designed a field jacket to replace the bulky and orthodox pack they even called it the Gung Ho jacket. ", Later, Carlson used gung ho as a motto during his (unconventional) command of the enthusiastic 2nd Marine Raider Battalion, leading to other marines adopting the term to mean overly enthusiastic. Then he wrote two books about China (one titled Twin Stars of China: A Behind-the-Scenes Story of China’s Valiant Struggle for Existence by a U.S. Marine who Lived & Moved with the People). The Communist Origins of the Marine Corps' Famous Slogan", Military Secretary to the Commandant of the Marine Corps, Seapower and Projection Forces subcommittee, United States Marine Corps Warfighting Laboratory, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Gung_ho&oldid=974032049, United States Marine Corps lore and symbols, Articles containing Chinese-language text, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 20 August 2020, at 18:14. T. Hoffman describes it as "an unconventional military philosophy that was an admixture of Chinese culture, Communist egalitarianism, and New England town hall democracy. I told them of the motto of the Chinese Cooperatives, Gung Ho. But it didn't always. I wasn’t exactly gung ho about waking up early this morning. When I designed a field jacket to replace the bulky and orthodox pack they even called it the Gung Ho jacket. Carlson was a U.S. Marine who was somewhat involved with the ICCIC.
Gung-ho describes enthusiasm — often to the point of naivete.
In 1943, there was even a movie released called Gung Ho! Outside of conversational use, gung-ho seems to have taken on some other vague definitions, in order to signal anything from teamwork to militariness to a kind of broad "Asian-ness."
She says that the country back then "was very different from China today. ", Calson told Life, "I was trying to build up the same sort of working spirit I had seen in China where all the soldiers dedicated themselves to one idea and worked together to put that idea over.
Brady is a professor at the University of Canterbury in New Zealand who specializes in politics in China. The gung-ho slogan adopted by some Marines became so well-known that it was turned into a 1943 movie. In 1939, he resigned from the Marine Corps because he was being censured for his vocal pro-China views. You’re drawing up plans on napkins, you can see the city lined with posters for your astrology-based wine club or whatever, you’re figuring out what color Tesla you’re gonna get with those sweet, sweet Pinot-Scorpio returns. Maybe you're a college freshman, emailing all of your professors before the semester starts to tell them how absolutely thrilled you are to be in their class. Copyright 2019 NPR. ", Moe cites a 1952 glossary of Marine slang with the following definition: "GUNG HO. "Woah, slow down," they say. Gung ho /ˈɡʌŋˈhoʊ/ is an English term, with the current meaning of "overly enthusiastic or energetic". Brady is a professor at the University of Canterbury in New Zealand who specializes in politics in China. “Woah, slow down,” they say. One such foreigner was a fellow named Evans Fordyce Carlson. In 1937, Japan invaded and kicked off the second Sino-Japanese War. Though the movement was relatively small, with 30,000 workers at 3,000 factories at its peak, it got outsized attention because English-speaking foreigners were involved, many of whom were central to forming the International Committee for the Promotion of Industrial Chinese Cooperatives (ICCIC). And they named every new thing Gung Ho. ", The Red Army influenced now-Lt. Col. Carlson's leadership in a deeply idealistic way; every man would have input into the plans and officers had no distinct privileges until everyone felt they were earned. To get the full story, we have to go back almost a century, to 1930s China. It became the watchword.
In From Makin to Bougainville: Marine Raiders in the Pacific War, Maj. Jon. Carlson spent nearly two years with the members of the Red Army, traveling thousands of miles with them, sometimes behind enemy lines. Within hours, you call up a friend to ask them to invest. By many accounts, China during that era was not doing super well. Maybe you’re a college freshman, emailing all of your professors before the semester starts to tell them how absolutely thrilled you are to be in their class. Its mission was "organizing the unemployed workers and refugees for production to support the War of Resistance. Tens of millions of people living around Shanghai flooded inland, becoming refugees in their own country.
The original Chinese is 工業合作社, which means “industrial cooperative” —工業, (gōng yè) meaning “industry”, and 合作社, (hé zuò shè) meaning “cooperative.” We’re talking organizations democratically run by workers, producing industrial goods like blankets and military uniforms. It means Work Together — Work in Harmony." Corbis via Getty Images A Life magazine profile from 1943 said, "In Carlson's opinion the 8th Route Army is the best-organized, best-led fighting force in the world today for its size and purpose. Civil war was breaking out. Gung-ho describes enthusiasm — often to the point of naivete. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org. He spent time touring China, examining the cooperatives and slowly coming to believe that U.S. war with Japan was inevitable. ", And for some reason, Carlson associated the Red Army with the Industrial Cooperative movement. (It doesn't, and according to Brady, the cooperatives would have only been affiliated with the Communists in local pockets.).
1. Within hours, you call up a friend to ask them to invest. The industrial cooperative movement sought to address the problems caused by the war: a general lack of resources for both civilians and the military, and refugees in need of work. ". It is thought to have originated from a catachresis of Chinese 工合 (pinyin: gōnghé; lit.
In 1939, he resigned from the Marine Corps because he was being censured for his vocal pro-China views. Gōng hé—gung ho—became their slogan and battle cry. Say 'Mmhmm', Some 'Podunk' Town In The Middle Of Nowhere, an extensive article about gung-ho in 1967. The term’s current use stems from the way Carlson interpreted and popularized it.
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