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Mao Zedong: Dictatorship of a Single Party State

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Introduction

By: Melissa D., Danise F., Prashanth R., Jonathan T. Mao Zedong: Dictatorship of a Single Party State 1. How did Mao come to power? a. By force, through officially legitimate channels, or by cheating peacefully? A combination of these? * combination (force, legitimate channels) o 1911 revolution, Mao enlisted as soldier in local regiment in Hunan; fought along side revolutionaries o participated in May 4th Movement of 1919 (anti-imperialist protests) o introduced to Marxism at Beijing University o 1921, co-founded Communist Party of China (CPC) o 23 July 1921, Mao attended first session of National Congress of the Communist Party of China o 1926-1928, Northern Expedition, military campaign by Kuomintang (Chinese Nationalist Party) (KMT) * intended to speed up revolution against feudalism + imperialism o early 1927, Chinese Civil War sparked by peasant uprisings in wake of Northern Expedition o 1 August 1927, People's Liberation Army formed by Zhu De o 7 September 1927, Autumn Harvest Uprising in Changsha, lead by Mao * defeated by KMT o People's Liberation Army joined CPC + Mao's movement o 1931, Soviet Republic of China formed by Mao in Jianxi province * challenged by Jianxi branch of CPC * Mao suppressed them * 186,000 killed; Mao's version of Red Terror * destroyed by KMT, 1934 o loss of Jianxi province lead to Long March * large-scale retreat from KMT; westward from Jianxi, then north * approx. ...read more.

Middle

even doctors all sent to help steel production o large effort placed on poorly planned construction projects, eg: irrigation works built w/p input of trained engineers o adopted harmful farming techniques * close cropping - seeds were sown too densely on incorrect assumption that plants of same species wouldn't compete * leaving fields unploughed, etc. o 1958-1962, Great Sparrow Campaign * extermination of rats, flies, mosquitoes, sparrows, etc. * in order to stop them from eating/damaging crops o 1958-1961, Great Chinese Famine * 1958 - favourable weather, but lack of farmers to collect harvest; everyone's on steel production * crops left to rot uncollected * mass extermination of sparrows b/c of Great Sparrow Campaign, lots of locust swarms to eat + destroy crops * exaggerated harvest reports - disproportioned amount of grain given to state, none left for peasants * 1959 - Yellow River flooded; est. 2 mill. died as result of drowning/starvation from crop failure * 1960 - drought; affected 55% of cultivated land o predicting to take most of blame, Mao stepped down as President of PRC, maintained position as Chairman of CPC * Liu Shaoqi to replace Mao as President of PRC * education - Simplified Chinese Characters (SCC), 1956, & Social Education Movement (SEM), 1963-1966 o SCC to increase literacy; would make masses more susceptible to propaganda (similar to Lenin) ...read more.

Conclusion

What forces brought about the dictator's goals? Consider the use of military force, propaganda, personal charisma, strong economic policies, foreign polices etc. * desire to establish China as a Socialist power * desire to return China to state of world prestige after period of Western/Japanese imperialism (GLF) * desire to maintain power c. To what extent were the dictator's goals implemented? * achieved Socialism in China * GLF disaster - iron production increased 45% in 1958 and a combined 30% over the next two years, but plummeted in 1961, and did not reach the previous 1958 level until 1964. * HFC persecutions successful in silencing critics * CR successful in purging opposition, esp. Liu Shaoqi d. What were the chief good/bad things that Mao did for his state? Good Bad Illiteracy - 1949, 80% illiteracy rate vs. 1976, <7% illiteracy rate Destroyed centuries worth of history w/ CR Life Expectancy - 1949, 35 years vs. 1976, 70 years Estimated 750,000 - 3 million deaths attributed to CR Ended "Century of Humiliation" from Western & Japanese imperialism Estimated 30 million deaths attributed to GLF Abolished prostitution Massive deforestation of countryside due to GLF HFC began trend of free thought and critical assessment. A similar surge of ideological thought would not be seen until late 1980s, culminating on 5 July 1989, in Tiananmen Square. Invaded Tibet - imperialism! ...read more.

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