American Revolution Vs 1949 Chinese Revolution

Decent Essays
What is “revolution”? Revolution, as defined by the Merriam-Webster dictionary, is “a sudden, extreme, or complete change in the way people live, work, etc.” (The Merriam-Webster Dictionary, 2007). When defining revolution in the Chinese context, revolution is an event where “the oppressed classes rise in revolt to seize power, destroy an old decadent social system and build a new advanced society. Revolution can destroy the old relations of production, build new ones, free up productivity and promote the development of society” (The Contemporary Chinese Dictionary, 2002). It is easy to claim that the revolutions in 1911 and 1949 are China’s two twentieth-century revolutions. Both occurred during years that brought profound change to China’s political structure and to the lives of Chinese people, but within a revolution, there is the concept of a beginning and an end, the events…show more content…
If anything, the 1949 Chinese Revolution entered China into an era of never-ending revolution, violent and nonviolent. Two more “revolutions” occur after 1949: the Great Leap Forward and the Cultural Revolution. Mao believed that China’s socialist transformation was occurring too slowly. He believed China needed to leapfrog into a modern economy and a socialist utopia. In order for this to occur, there needed to be sweeping change within Chinese society. The hallmark of the Great Leap Forward were the People’s Communes. The greatest example of this era of revolution is the Cultural Revolution. At the start of the Cultural Revolution in 1966, Mao instructed young Red Guards to destroy the Four Olds: old customs, old culture, old habits, and old ideas (Osnos, 285). The Cultural Revolution was revolution in its purest form. Mao intended to transform China into a completely modern, socialist state through the Cultural Revolution. There needed to be a sudden, extreme, or complete change in the way people live, work,
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