by Richard L. Walker ‧ RELEASE DATE: June 15, 1955
A dispassionate survey of China's first five years under Communism puts some grim facts and prospects on the board. Noting that the same system as that used in the organization and control of the Soviet States is being employed in China, Mr. Walker dubs the five years from 1949-50 to 1954 the flush of victory, the year of violence, of regimentation, of retrenchment, of decision. How Mao rules the ""People's Democratic Dictatorship""- the gaining of psychological control specially in the training of cadres (a telling section); the organization of control from national to local levels; the economic push toward industrialization at any cost; the various drives imposed on the people, some welcomed as Land Reform, some distressing, as the Marriage Law; the place of terror and hate campaigns (particularly America) in molding the peopleall are detailed. The disregard for human beings is evident as one witnesses the grinding of the state machine which has little regard for its peasants, forced now toward the collectivization which hasn't worked in Russia, nor for the plight of the urban workers, nor for its enemies, the intellectuals and landlords- (whom the author points out were in China not another class). In foreign affairs, the author feels that China follows the U.S.S.R. (He doesn't seem to feel a pull with China a separate hub of an alliance, but hopefully notes the xenophobic quality of Chinese ideology still encouraged by the Russians, which might possibly be turned against them), and pressures the neutrals caught between the U.S.S.R. and the U.S.A.. In prospect, he weighs the historical facts of oriental despotism to which China is accustomed against our possible action in terms of economic cooperation, holding out against the regime by refusing to recognize Communist China and keeping Taiwan as symbol. In comparison with recent reports on China, more inclusive and less personal than the eye-witness accounts of Moraes, Hutheesing, and others (whom he mentions), this is calm and sober coverage.
Pub Date: June 15, 1955
Page Count: -
Publisher: Yale University Press
Review Posted Online: N/A
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 1955
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