--Shows that the Mao era was benficial for most Chinese citizens-- A powerful mixture of political passion and original research, a brave polemic against the fashionable view on China...Aims a kckout blow at Jung Chang's recent book on Mao, which Bush and the conservatives rave-reviewed. Gregor Benton, Professor of Chinese History, University of Cardiff This important book opens a much needed window onto Chinese perceptions of the country's post-Mao direction...Highlights the renewal of popular support for socialism and the growing opposition to contemporary state policies. Martin Hart-Landsberg, Professor of Ecomics, Lewis & Clark College, Portland, Oregon Mao and his policies have long been demonised in the West, with the Cultural Revolution considered a fundamental violation of human rights. As China embraces capitalism, the Mao era is being surgically denigrated by the Chinese political and intellectual elite. This book tackles the extremely negative depiction of China under Mao in recent publications and argues most people in China, including the rural poor and the urban working class, actually benefited from Mao's policy of a comprehensive welfare system for the urban and basic health and education provision for the rural, which is being reversed in the current rush towards capitalism. By a critical analysis of the mainstream account of the Mao era and the Cultural Revolution and by revealing what is offered in the ufficial e-media debates this book sets the record straight, making a convincing argument for the positive effects of Mao's policies on the well-being of the Chinese people.
Mobo Gao is Professor of Chinese Studies and Director of the Adelaide Confucius Institute at the University of Adelaide. He is the author of Gao Village; A Portrait of Rural Life in Modern China (1999) and Mandarin Chinese: An Introduction (2000).