The resurgence of revolution, as well as the emergence of foreign threats, has shaped the epoch which led to the founding of a first-world country, home to a population reaching 1.3 billion, the People’s Republic of China. …
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The turbulent period which has shaped China is brimming of reformists like Mao Zedong and Deng Xiaoping. Mao Zedong, born into a peasant family in Shaoshan, Hunan Province, is an advocate of Karl Marx and his idea in communism and the proletariat. Along with Zhou Enlai, Zhu De and Lin Biao, Mao Zedong was a founder-member of Chinese Communist Party (CPP) when it was established in 1921 (bbc.co.uk). Mao’s ushering into Marxism could be attributed to his devoted reading of Marx’s “The Communist Manifesto” while he worked in the University Library (bbc.co.uk). His early political career with CPP laid him in the Koumintang Nationalist Party as a political organizer. When Chiang Kai-Shek emerged as the new leader of Koumintang, after the death of Dr. Sun Yat-sen, he launched an “anti-communist purge”. Consequently, Mao led his followers and the communist Red Army in the legendary 6,000 mile retreat “Long March” to Northwest China “to establish a new base” (“Mao Zedong”). When Mao gained the upper hand after defeating Chiang in a civil war in 1949 (the year Mao proclaimed the founding of People’s Republic of China), he set out to “reshape Chinese society.” ...
nd set out to reform and bring about economic growth and development which freed estimated “170 million peasants out of extreme poverty” by the early 1990s. Among the socio-economic reforms brought by Deng was the abolishment of rural agricultural communes tantamount to a condemnation of Mao’s Great Leap Forward: the giving of permit to city dwellers for them to start small-scale businesses, allowing ordinary Chinese citizen to buy consumer goods, the imposition of tough population controls that included forced abortions to limit families to one or two children, and inviting foreign investors to the country (“Reformer with an Iron Fist”). Deng also criticized Mao’s Cultural Revolution when it shut down schools and suck the student population “into the ubiquitous Red Guards” (“Reformer with an Iron Fist”). Although Deng’s affiliation with the left is as staunch as Mao’s, the two are at odds when it comes to economic development. Mao’s tact ensconced in Great Leap Forward is juxtaposed by Deng’s liberalization of trade, commerce and industry in China. Mao’s personality exemplifies conservatism at a time when changes brought by the West trickles in Japanese soil and other countries in Asia. Mao headed China in manner somewhat regressive and insulated from the Western influence and urbanity. On the other hand, the progressivist and pragmatic brand of leadership which could be influenced by France – where he also developed in himself the idea of capitalism – Deng brought about urbanization and industrialization in China. It is interesting to note that Deng who is a central figure in CPP had suffered 3 overthrows in 1933, 1966 and on 1978 by his fellow revolutionaries when he attacked Mao’s ideology. Known to be a “capitalist roader”
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