During Dynasty. The country was in political confusion

the twentieth century, was very powerful for China because two revolution
happed: 1911 Revolution and The Cultural Revolution in 1949. The 1911
Revolution is not as known as much as the Cultural Revolution, but had a significant
affect to the world. China throughout the course of history rapidly changed and
while the country itself changed, the definition of Chinese identity itself
changed over the course of the twentieth century. The Cultural Revolution was
very remarkable and influential to the citizens of China and the country. The
definitions such as gender, class identities, urban/rural, Confucian/tradition
has changed or rather developed massively.

Chinese communism is a very unique form of
government. It had to fight and withstand many obstacles through history and
resulted in rapid development for China. Chinese Cultural Revolution, seen as a
peasant-based revolution was led by Mao Zedong in 1949. This marked the
beginning of the challenging times that later on created a social and economic
force in the world economy. There was a Republican revolution in Chino on October
10th, 1911 which led to the fall of the ruling Qing Dynasty. The
country was in political confusion and the landlords and upper classmen took
advantage of the situation to exploit the citizens and life became unbearable.

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The government and the upperclass performed no function that the peasants
deemed essential way of life. Thus, the link between the government, upper
class and the peasants were weak and largely artificial.  Between 1916 and 1927, a new warlordism
developed. Warlords attacked each other even though they seemingly had similar
ideas and goals, making it a regrettable era in China’s history. This marked
the beginning of the growth of communism in China. Mao Zedong, a poor yet
intelligent man is the main individual that attributed to the ideal of
communism. The lower classes in society were attracted by the principles which
called for equally as they suffered from extreme poverty, starvation and grief.

The success of the peasant revolutions in the
20th century China was largely due to the presence of
large landless labourers. The agrarian society depended on the central
authority. There was an absence of commercial agriculture and the peasants were
subject to stresses. China was a highly bureaucratized imperial regime in which
“landed property, degree holding, and political office” were deeply entwined.

The upper class in China were bureaucrats, and to hold office in the imperial
bureaucracy is through the examination system that started from the T’ang
dynasty. Landed wealth came out of the bureaucracy and depended on the
bureaucracy for its existence. More or less open corruption was the only way
the imperial regime managed to sustain this hulking bureaucratic apparatus.

Landowning was
highly concentrated but worked by countless peasant tenants, a relationship
that was a political device for squeezing an economic surplus out of the
peasants and using it to over pay bureaucrats.

Mao Zedong was one of the main individual that led
the Cultural Revolution in China. He was a Hunanese peasant, but became one of
the most influential character in China. He was very good at self-promotion
which resulted many Chinese citizens to act for him.  Mao Zedong’s attempt to establish himself as
the leader of the Communist world by ridding the country of capitalism and its
long standing traditions.

Mao launched a national campaign called The Great
Leap Forward to boost China’s economy. The Great Leap Forward was to
redistribute the land among China’s rural population and organized workers into
communes. Unfortunately, The Great Leap Forward failed miserably and to regain
the power back, Mao united with the radicals to launch the Cultural Revolution.

Mao stated: “Those representatives of the bourgeoisie who have sneaked into the
Party, the government, the army and various spheres of culture are a bunch of
counter-revolutionary revisionists,” claiming that these elements should be
removed violently. Then, Mao shut down schools in China to mobilize students
into units called the Red Guard. The Red Guard attacked, abused, and killed
intellectuals such as teachers and even the innocent people if they suspected
thinking that they would undermine the communist system. Youth played a very
important role in the Cultural Revolution as the Red Guards, and they were
mainly urban students (Presentation20). Red Guards were students at the age of
middle schooler to fairly high schooler. They were impacted and empowered by
the principles of Chairman Mao. The Red Guards goals were similar to Mao’s: to attack
the four olds (old culture, old customs, old habits, old thoughts), re-live Yan’an
experience (rectification campaign), build a new revolutionary culture based on
Maoism, and finally attack anyone in power by branding them a
counter-revolutionary (Presentation20).  According to the class presentation by
Professor Hess Christian, there were policies to recover from the Great Leap

Systematic depopulation
of urban center

The return of
some private plots for families

Small free
markets re-opened. Farmers get to keep their surplus. Just like in the land

profitability is key, leads to strengthened position of managers/technicians

Expertise over

Material incentives
over ideological incentives (From Presentation20)

Mao Zedong launched the Cultural Revolution, his goals were to change the
succession from Lio Shaoqi and Deng Xiaoping to Ling Biao the loyal head of
PLA, disciplines the huge bureaucracy: attack on leaders at all institutions,
attack “the four olds,” raise “revolutionary successors,” and address the
inequalities brought about by Liu and Deng (Presentation20). 



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