The Battle for China's Past: Mao and the Cultural Revolution
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Mao and his policies have long been demonised in the West, with the Cultural Revolution considered a fundamental violation of human rights.
As China embraces capitalism, the Mao era is being surgically denigrated by the Chinese political and intellectual elite. This book tackles the extremely negative depiction of China under Mao in recent publications and argues most people in China, including the rural poor and the urban working class, actually benefited from Mao's policy of a comprehensive welfare system for the urban and basic health and education provision for the rural, which is being reversed in the current rush towards capitalism.
By a critical analysis of the mainstream account of the Mao era and the Cultural Revolution and by revealing what is offered in the unofficial e-media debates this book sets the record straight, making a convincing argument for the positive effects of Mao's policies on the well-being of the Chinese people.
when its author grew up with a wet-nurse, nanny, maid, gardener and chauffeur provided by the party, protected in a walled compound, educated in a special school for officials’ children. As a Grade 10 official, her father was among the 20,000 most senior people in a country of 1.25 billion, and it was in this period that children of ‘high officials’ became almost a class of their own. Still, the enthusiastic Western audience of Wild Swans found something to identify in Jung Chang’s perennial fear
return to it. Wu De (2004) also reveals that Mao actually advised Li Xuefeng, the new boss of Beijing after the downfall of the former Mayor Peng Zhen, to go to Inner Mongolia or Tianjin to escape the heat of the mass movement as the Cultural Revolution unfolded. Clearly, Mao wanted to protect the party officials, or at least some of them, but at the same time he wanted them exposed and criticized by the masses. This is also shown by Mao’s talk about Jian Bozan, the well-known historian of
Mao’s own words do not lead to the conclusion that he was always carried around. Jin asks, rightly, if the Zhang and Halliday claim were true it would not have been ‘unknown’ since the claim was already made by Zhang Guotao and what Mao said was published in his bodyguard Ye Zilong’s memoirs in 2000. Murder of 70 million Chinese people The first sentence of Chang and Halliday states that Mao was the murderer of 70 million Chinese. Of the 70 million one set of figures that Chang and Halliday
out. Chang’s co-author Halliday says that being married to Chang is like a fairy tale (Thorpe 2005). In his non-fairy tale days Halliday condemned the Japanese invasion of Manchuria and China (Halliday 1973). But now he agrees with his fairy tale princess that the Japanese war in China was more or less the result of a Mao/Stalin conspiracy. How does Halliday compare Chang’s and his interpretation of the Korean War now with that in his own book Korea: The Unknown War, or his understanding of the
enterprise income tax. As a result of this reform, local governments’ revenue fell, and to cover their loss of revenue they taxed the rural residents. In 1993, for instance, the financial income of the central government was 95 billion RMB and in 1994 it increased to more than 290 billion. In contrast, the financial income of the local governments over the same period fell from 339 billion RMB to 231 billion. Meanwhile, financial expenditure allocated from the central government to rural China