The Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution

1526 Words Feb 3rd, 2018 6 Pages
However, it was the ‘revisionist’ developments in the economic, political and cultural sphere that led Mao to seek national rectification through revolution. Mao’s global outlook meant that “no revolution was an island” (Moise, 1994, p. 151), indeed from the moment Khrushchev gave the ‘secret speech’ in 1956 Mao grew increasingly vigilant and responded by turning ‘left’ in domestic and foreign policy (MacFarquhar & Schoenhals, 2008). His fear of the encroachment of revisionism on the Chinese Revolution found validation in the increasingly palpable division within party leadership on the liberalisation of economic policy from 1959-62, the issue of Sino-soviet rapprochement in response to the Vietnam war and the increasing Party allowance of anti-Maoist influences in the cultural arena. In the end, what manifest as a power struggle amongst the upper party leadership, was in Mao’s eyes, a struggle between two roads, one capitalist and the other communist (Tung, 1964). Thus, any opposition encountered by Mao was viewed with increasing suspicion for it marked a dangerous diversion from ‘true’ Marxist-Leninist ideals. It is hence in this sense of imminent crisis of counter-revolution that Mao found conviction for the need for what Baum (1971) termed ‘ideological revivalism’ in order to “immunize the Chinese population from the pernicious weed of revisionism” (p. 67).

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