A direct, hard-hitting study of China's Great Leap Forward in light of newly opened archival material.
Veteran China historian Dikötter (Humanities/Univ. of Hong Kong, Modern History of China/Univ. of London; The Age of Openness: China Before Mao, 2008, etc.) parses this staggering tragedy into three manageable, comprehensive components: Mao Zedong's bloody-minded resolve to implement the accelerated collectivization of the countryside, and the stifling of all opposition; the effects of these devastating policies on agriculture, industry, trade, housing and nature; and the catastrophic human toll ("at least 45 million people died unnecessarily between 1958 and 1962").Read full book review >