We look forward to seeing you on your next visit to the library. Find a location near you.

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

Book Cover
Average Rating
5 star
4 star
3 star
2 star
1 star
New York : Walker & Co., 2010.
Physical Desc:
xxi, 420 pages, [8] pages of plates : ill., map ; 25 cm.
951.055 D575 2010
Rio Linda
951.055 D575 2010

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.

Also in This Series
Call Number
951.055 D575 2010
On Shelf
Rio Linda
951.055 D575 2010
On Shelf
More Like This
Other Editions and Formats
More Copies In LINK+
Loading LINK+ Copies...
More Details
1st U.S. ed.
9780802777683, 0802777686, 9780802779236


Includes bibliographical references and index.
Reviews from GoodReads
Loading GoodReads Reviews.
APA Citation (style guide)

Dikötter, F. (2010). Mao's great famine: the history of China's most devastating catastrophe, 1958-1962. 1st U.S. ed. New York, Walker & Co.

Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

Dikötter, Frank. 2010. Mao's Great Famine: The History of China's Most Devastating Catastrophe, 1958-1962. New York, Walker & Co.

Chicago / Turabian - Humanities Citation (style guide)

Dikötter, Frank, Mao's Great Famine: The History of China's Most Devastating Catastrophe, 1958-1962. New York, Walker & Co, 2010.

MLA Citation (style guide)

Dikötter, Frank. Mao's Great Famine: The History of China's Most Devastating Catastrophe, 1958-1962. 1st U.S. ed. New York, Walker & Co, 2010.

Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of July 2022. Citations contain only title, author, edition, publisher, and year published. Citations should be used as a guideline and should be double checked for accuracy.
Staff View
Grouped Work ID:
Go To GroupedWork

Record Information

Last Sierra Extract TimeMar 09, 2023 07:55:43 PM
Last File Modification TimeMar 10, 2023 03:10:41 AM
Last Grouped Work Modification TimeMar 22, 2023 02:08:38 AM

MARC Record

LEADER02089cam a2200385 a 4500
008100408s2010    nyuabf   b    001 0 eng  
010 |a 2010013141
020 |a 9780802777683
020 |a 0802777686
020 |a 9780802779236
040 |a DLC|c DLC|d BTCTA|d YDXCP|d CDX|d C#P|d BWX|d JRS
043 |a a-cc---
049 |a JRSA
05000|a HC430.F3|b D55 2010
08200|a 951.05/5|2 22
099 |a 951.055 D575 2010
1001 |a Dikötter, Frank.
24510|a Mao's great famine :|b the history of China's most devastating catastrophe, 1958-1962 /|c Frank Dikötter.
250 |a 1st U.S. ed.
260 |a New York :|b Walker & Co.,|c 2010.
300 |a xxi, 420 p., [8] p. of plates :|b ill., map ;|c 25 cm.
504 |a Includes bibliographical references and index.
5050 |a Two rivals -- The bidding starts -- Purging the ranks -- Bugle call -- Launching sputniks -- Let the shelling begin -- The people's communes -- Steel fever -- Warning signs -- Shopping spree -- Dizzy with success -- The end of truth -- Repression -- The Sino-Soviet rift -- Capitalist grain -- Finding a way out -- Agriculture -- Industry -- Trade -- Housing -- Nature -- Feasting through famine -- Wheeling and dealing -- On the sly -- 'Dear Chairman Mao' -- Robbers and rebels -- Exodus -- Children -- Women -- The elderly -- Accidents -- Disease -- The gulag -- Violence -- Sites of horror -- Cannibalism -- The final tally.
650 0|a Famines|z China.
650 0|a Food supply|z China.
651 0|a China|x Economic policy|y 1949-1976.
907 |a .b20318194|b 11-30-22|c 10-05-10
998 |a cen|a rio|b 10-25-10|c m|d a |e -|f eng|g nyu|h 0|i 4
948 |a Featured List 12/10
994 |a C0|b JRS
945 |d  - - |e 12-01-2022 13:23|3 0|g 0|h 12-13-22|i 33029071086581|j 3|k  - - |l cenag|o -|p $30.00|q  |r f|s - |t 3|u 25|v 36|w 1|x 1|0 6|1 8|y .i62426187|z 10-20-10
945 |d  - - |e 04-16-2021 8:20|3 0|g 0|h 04-23-21|i 33029071086565|j 3|k  - - |l rioag|o -|p $30.00|q  |r -|s - |t 3|u 20|v 21|w 0|x 0|0 42|1 42|y .i62426163|z 10-20-10