China’s Communist Party seized power in 1949 after a long period of guerrilla insurgency followed by full-scale war, but the Chinese revolution was just beginning. China Under Mao narrates the rise and fall of the Maoist revolutionary state from 1949 to 1976─an epoch of startling accomplishments and disastrous failures, steered by many forces but dominated above all by Mao Zedong.
“Walder convincingly shows that the effect of Maoist inequalities still distorts China today…[It] will be a mind-opening book for many (and is a depressing reminder for others).”
─Jonathan Mirsky, The Spectator
“Andrew Walder’s account of Mao’s time in power is detailed, sophisticated and powerful…Walder takes on many pieces of conventional wisdom about Mao’s China and pulls them apart…What was it that led so much of China’s population to follow Mao’s orders, in effect to launch a civil war against his own party? There is still much more to understand about the bond between Mao and the wider population. As we try to understand that bond, there will be few better guides than Andrew Walder’s book. Sober, measured, meticulous in every deadly detail, it is an essential assessment of one of the world’s most important revolutions.”
─Rana Mitter, Times Literary Supplement