• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Why did Mao Zedong introduce a second five year plan in 1958 and to what extent did it succeed or fail?

Extracts from this document...


Modern China Assignment- History Coursework Question 1 Qu1- Why did Mao Zedong introduce a second five year plan in 1958 and to what extent did it succeed or fail? China is a gigantic country and historians can study and trace their civilisations as far back as five thousand years ago. The Manchu emperors had ruled China since 1644. At the end of the nineteenth century and leading up to the twentieth century the emperor of China, Guangxu, was dominated by his aunt, the empress Ci xii. For forty years she ruled for her nephew. China entered the twentieth century on a wave of reactionary terror, as the loose affiliation of north-east Chinese Secret Society groups known as the "Boxers" began a protracted attempt to destroy all Chinese Christian converts, and the missionaries who preached to them. Openly encouraged by a number of conservative officials, most of them from ruling Manchu minority, which had controlled the Chinese government since the seventeenth century, the Boxers entered Peking in mid 1900 and laid siege. In the meantime, pro Boxer generals and their followers in Shanxi and other northern provinces had conducted a brutal round-up and massacre of missionary families and their converts. By the terms of the vindictive Treaty Settlement that followed, several senior pro-Boxer Quing dynasty officials were executed, pro-Boxer areas were penalised, and the Chinese government was compelled to promise to pay a colossal �67 000000 for the lives and property destroyed. The Chinese felt the foreigner had exploited them and their country. For years therefore that Chinese peasants lived in dire poverty and under the rule of cruel dictatorship. In 1908 empress, Ci xi died, her successor was her nephew, a three year old boy named Pu Yi. His uncle, Prince Chun was given the power to rule on his behalf. In 1911 a group of nationalist rebels, headed by a man called Sun Yat Sen led a rebellion against the government. ...read more.


More aspects affected Mao's decision, for example in 1950 the USA sent troops to South Korea against Chinese backed North Koreans. In 1953 the USA conspired to block China's application to the United Nations. The USA and China obviously had a bad relationship with one another. To begin with the China and the Soviet Union seemed natural allies against the Western powers as they were both communists. Since the early days of the Chinese communist Party the Soviet Union had given Chinese communities advice and assistance. As an extension of their good relationship, in February of 1950 Mao signed The Treaty Of Friendship with the USSR: an agreement based on respect for the principle of equality, state independence and national sovereignty. He signed this because China would have credits and advisers. For a while relations with the Russia and China were stable, however when we entered the mid 1950's their relationship gradually deteriorated and was not as successful as everyone thought. Their relationship gradually deteriorated for many reasons; in Mao's view, the Soviet Union should not dominate Chinese revolution and as he put it once himself: " If the Russians break wind, we don't have to pretend it smells nice". The soviet view was that he was a nationalist. As one soviet member put it: "he was bursting with an impatient desire to rule the world. His plan was to rule first China, then Asia, then ...what?" The USSR began to argue about atomic weapons. They then began to have border disputes with India. The Soviet Union sent two helicopters, dozens of tanks and armoured vehicles, and several hundred armed troops to intrude into the border area. They penetrated a depth of two kilometres, unwarrantedly fired at the Chinese frontier wards on normal patrol duty, killing and wounding many of them on the spot, and closed on them. Driven beyond the limits of forbearance, the Chinese frontier guards were compelled to fight back in self-defence. ...read more.


A select group discussed with Deng the possible changes to china, often these were based on more developed countries like America, ideas were then published in papers or on television for discussion. Mao would never have tolerated this, he deemed the people not worthy of this knowledge. In the media under Mao everything was strictly controlled. Under Deng however, the introduction of televisions meant the people were more aware of news and affairs abroad. China became part of the modern world, as westerners knew it. Pop concerts, dancers and other western entertainment became more popular, there were more bikes, cars and motorbikes and there was more time for recreational activities. The people were more relaxed and the standard of living greatly improved. This would certainly not have been allowed in Mao's time. In tourism, Mao had no idea how to treat foreigners and never allowed. Deng realised that tourism would bring big business and outside influences this would help China to become more modern. In conclusion there have been so many changes that virtually none of Maoist china exists today. The economy was revamped and made more modern, there was a greater capacity to become wealthy and afford new things. People were given more responsibility in the workplace and were free to make their own decisions. The younger generations were helped to educate themselves and given a free choice as to what they wanted to do with their lives. Peoples social life was improved, they had more time and they were happier. Because of the change in the economy they had more money to spend. Politically China had changed, communism was still there but the beliefs had lessened a bit to allow people to be able to live in the world comfortably, however the main points are still in focus. The people's army is still running as it was in Mao's day but it is now much less of a force. China Still had a long way to go to become a democracy. These changes maybe a long time coming but at least they escaped Mao's restrictive control. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level International History, 1945-1991 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level International History, 1945-1991 essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    How far were Maos agricultural policies responsible for the scale of the Great Famine ...

    5 star(s)

    Tools including those for farming, were also being melted in 'Backyard Furnaces' an industrial policy simultaneously occurring with agricultural production under Mao's slogan of "Walking on two legs." However, this dual focus meant harvests were not being tended, leaving crops to rot in the fields as workers felt the need to produce steel at the same time.

  2. How did Mao first control the peasants, then the countryside and finally China?

    Mao assembled his troops and some of their families and started a march around China. Exactly where it was is illustrated to the right. The march started in 1934, with over 200 000 men, women, and children and he finished the march with about 8 000 people left.

  1. Why did Mao Zedong introduce a second five-year plan in 1958 and to what ...

    The plan gave priority to the development of heavy industry e.g. steel, coal and machinery. But it neglected light industry such as cotton making and food processing. This meant that the growth in living standards was slow. The 'first five year plan' achieved great success in the development of heavy industry.

  2. To what extent may the Great Leap Forward launched by Mao in 1958 be ...

    Despite claiming to be a Marxist, Mao considered rural peasants to be the seeds of agricultural success but thought that industrial peasants were the backbone of the economy. The Great Leap Forward was to be the second economic reform Mao was to launch in China.

  1. Gorbachev(TM)s reforms and policies, which were intended originally to strengthen the Soviet system, eventually ...

    War, was viewed the communist hardliners and by much of the military in the USSR as a sever blow to the security and prestige of their country. The depth of opposition to Gorbachev's reforms could be seen in August 1990, where these hardliners launched a coup to overthrow Gorbachev.

  2. Why does the Chinese government at the start of the twenty first century refuse ...

    In 1908, after the death of Empress Dowager Cixi, the successor as a ruler was passed to her two year old nephew, the dynasty was weak and in trouble. The power to rule was passed on to Prince Chun; however he disliked changes and replaced many powerful and able officials.

  1. Why did Mao launch the Cultural Revolution in 1966?

    Another major reason for which Mao launched the Cultural Revolution was the failure of the Great Leap Forward, which he never admitted to. Due to criticism from party members such as Peng Duhuai and Liu Shaoqi, Chinese people had started realising the problems caused by this disastrous policy.

  2. Assess the origins and consequences of the Cultural Revolution in China.

    However Liu and Deng the new ministers succeeded in ending the famine, and were growing increasingly popular within the party. This was a threat to Mao as he was frightened that they would replace him (leaving him to be dismissed like the Russian leader Khrushchev)

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work