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Mao's great famine: the history of China's most devastating catastrophe, 1958-1962

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Between 1958 and 1962, China descended into hell. Mao Zedong threw his country into a frenzy with the Great Leap Forward, an attempt to catch up to and overtake Britain in less than 15 years The experiment ended in the greatest catastrophe the country had ever known, destroying tens of millions of lives. So opens Frank Dikötter's riveting, magnificently detailed chronicle of an era in Chinese history much speculated about but never before fully documented because access to Communist Party archives has long been restricted to all but the most trusted historians. A new archive law has opened up thousands of central and provincial documents that "fundamentally change the way one can study the Maoist era." Dikötter makes clear, as nobody has before, that far from being the program that would lift the country among the world's superpowers and prove the power of Communism, as Mao imagined, the Great Leap Forward transformed the country in the other direction. It became the site not only of "one of the most deadly mass killings of human history,"—at least 45 million people were worked, starved, or beaten to death—but also of "the greatest demolition of real estate in human history," as up to one-third of all housing was turned into rubble). The experiment was a catastrophe for the natural world as well, as the land was savaged in the maniacal pursuit of steel and other industrial accomplishments. In a powerful mesghing of exhaustive research in Chinese archives and narrative drive, Dikötter for the first time links up what happened in the corridors of power-the vicious backstabbing and bullying tactics that took place among party leaders-with the everyday experiences of ordinary people, giving voice to the dead and disenfranchised. His magisterial account recasts the history of the People's Republic of China. An unprecedented, groundbreaking history of China's Great Famine that recasts the era of Mao Zedong and the history of the People's Republic of China. Frank Dikötter is Chair Professor of Humanities at the University of Hong Kong and Professor of the Modern History of China at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London. He is a key proponent of studying the history of China in global perspective, and has published a series of innovative books, from his classic The Discourse of Race in Modern China (Univ. Stanford Press 1992) to the controversial Narcotic Culture: A History of Drugs in China (Univ. Chicago Press 2004). He lives in Hong Kong.

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9780802777683
9781471205477
9780802779281
9780802779236
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Grouped Work ID79e9a426-52f2-1e11-bffa-7cb44c64f7b3
Grouping Titlemaos great famine the history of chinas most devastating catastrophe 1958 1962
Grouping Authorfrank dikotter
Grouping Categorybook
Grouping LanguageEnglish (eng)
Last Grouping Update2020-10-26 02:27:19AM
Last Indexed2020-10-26 02:47:20AM
Novelist Primary ISBN9780802779236

Solr Details

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auth_author2Bauckham, David.
authorDikötter, Frank.
author2-roleBauckham, David.|Narrator
hoopla digital.
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Elk Grove
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Elk Grove
display_description

Between 1958 and 1962, China descended into hell. Mao Zedong threw his country into a frenzy with the Great Leap Forward, an attempt to catch up to and overtake Britain in less than 15 years The experiment ended in the greatest catastrophe the country had ever known, destroying tens of millions of lives. So opens Frank Dikötter's riveting, magnificently detailed chronicle of an era in Chinese history much speculated about but never before fully documented because access to Communist Party archives has long been restricted to all but the most trusted historians. A new archive law has opened up thousands of central and provincial documents that "fundamentally change the way one can study the Maoist era." Dikötter makes clear, as nobody has before, that far from being the program that would lift the country among the world's superpowers and prove the power of Communism, as Mao imagined, the Great Leap Forward transformed the country in the other direction. It became the site not only of "one of the most deadly mass killings of human history,"—at least 45 million people were worked, starved, or beaten to death—but also of "the greatest demolition of real estate in human history," as up to one-third of all housing was turned into rubble). The experiment was a catastrophe for the natural world as well, as the land was savaged in the maniacal pursuit of steel and other industrial accomplishments. In a powerful mesghing of exhaustive research in Chinese archives and narrative drive, Dikötter for the first time links up what happened in the corridors of power-the vicious backstabbing and bullying tactics that took place among party leaders-with the everyday experiences of ordinary people, giving voice to the dead and disenfranchised. His magisterial account recasts the history of the People's Republic of China. An unprecedented, groundbreaking history of China's Great Famine that recasts the era of Mao Zedong and the history of the People's Republic of China. Frank Dikötter is Chair Professor of Humanities at the University of Hong Kong and Professor of the Modern History of China at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London. He is a key proponent of studying the history of China in global perspective, and has published a series of innovative books, from his classic The Discourse of Race in Modern China (Univ. Stanford Press 1992) to the controversial Narcotic Culture: A History of Drugs in China (Univ. Chicago Press 2004). He lives in Hong Kong.

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subject_facetChina -- Economic policy -- 1949-1976
Famines -- China
Food supply -- China
title_displayMao's great famine : the history of China's most devastating catastrophe, 1958-1962
title_fullMao's Great Famine The History of China's Most Devastating Catastrophe, 1958-1962
Mao's great famine : the history of China's most devastating catastrophe, 1958-1962 / Frank Dikötter
Mao's great famine : the history of China's most devastating catastrophe, 1958-1962 [electronic resource] / Frank Dikötter
title_shortMao's great famine
title_subthe history of China's most devastating catastrophe, 1958-1962
topic_facetEconomic policy
Famines
Food supply
History
Nonfiction