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How far did life change for women; businessmen and landlords, and peasants between 1949 and the early 1960s?

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Introduction

How far did life change for women; businessmen and landlords, and peasants between 1949 and the early 1960s? From 1935 to 1949, there were fourteen years of unrest in China. After the war with Japan the KMT alliance with the Communist was broken in 1945, there was then a race to occupy the liberated areas, which the Japanese had left after being defeated. While the war between Japan and China was in progress, it had devastating effects on China and the Chinese people. The Civil war that followed caused further havoc. The war meant the destruction and the infrastructure of the country. Inflation grew to 2,870,000% by the end of 1948,and the price of sorghum rose 70% over night. On top of the war, the population was growing by 15 million a year. With many peasants fighting in the Japanese war, and then in the Civil war, it meant production was very low. Living standards for all people, especially in rural areas, was poor, and life expectancy was only 40 years. There was barely any education or institutions such as hospitals, except in the Japanese-controlled areas up until 1945. ...read more.

Middle

The businessmen of China were suddenly hit by the brunt of the Communist rule. As most businessmen worked in cities which were held by the KMT, right up until 1949, the Communists had to deal with many of them and quickly. This is why, regularly, they were unfairly treated. They were stripped of political rights and were forced out of the cities and performed menial jobs such as railway building. They were given no social standing and lived poor lives. The five antis campaign was aimed at finding businessmen and industrialists (Capitalists) who were seen as corrupting the whole political system; through 'bribery, tax evasion, stealing state assets', along with other crimes against the government. It turned into an attack on bourgeoisie as a whole and millions were killed. Landlords and businessmen lost all political rights, had no or a fraction of the money they had before 1949, and were classed as the lowest of the low. Negative life change was most prominent for the Landlords and businessmen. Though around 2% of cultivated land was still owned by landlords after the reform. The majority of China's population has always been peasant, and this is one of the reasons that the Communist Party was successful. ...read more.

Conclusion

There were great social, economic and political strides for the Chinese people. There were certain times during the revolution, that were better for certain groups than others; and times when life was bad for some groups. Though living conditions were still very poor, and standards were not met, this was overlooked. No one could ever bring the country together. It is so vast, and was fragmented which made it impossible to control. The capitalists had the rawest deal. The Communists had it in for them, and they were punished unscrupulously. They were booted right to the other end of the social standings, stripped of political rights and forced to work in labour camps. Without a doubt, their quality of life degenerated. Women were promised new equal rights for jobs, marriage, and choices. For women in the Communist Party, this did happen to an extent, but not fully. Women outside the party were freed from the feudal traditions, but still did not have much choice or freedom. Though total equality was not reached, their lives did improve. The improvement of Peasants' lives was one of the main aims of the party. During the fifties, they did have a hard time and life did degenerate. With help from all the campaigns and programs, the peasants lives change unquestionably to a massive degree. ...read more.

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