Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

A new little red book?

After the debacles of the late '70s, I would never have guessed that Quotations from Chairman Mao would get a new edition. But there will be a new edition (sort of).

Mao's Little Red Book to get revamp
It will not be especially little, and the cover will be only partly red. But a new version of the world's second most published book is due to appear on Chinese shelves, decades after it fell from favour with the end of Maoism.

Poster from the Cultural Revolution
The re-emergence of Quotations from Chairman Mao – better known as the Little Red Book – comes amid an official revival of the era's rhetoric. China's leader, Xi Jinping, has embraced Maoist terminology and concepts, launching a "mass line rectification campaign" and this week even presiding over a televised self-criticism session…

The new version is due for release in November, just before the 120th anniversary of Mao's birth…

Mao still occupies a place of honour in modern China. His body lies in state in Tiananmen Square; his portrait hangs from its gate; and his face gazes from banknotes. Others have appropriated his heritage in unexpected ways: "There is a whole industry of Mao's thought as managerial wisdom, much as became of Sun Tzu's Art of War," said Jeremy Paltiel, a Carleton University expert on the Communist party.

But the party has drawn a veil over the later years of Mao's rule since its 1981 resolution proclaimed that he was 70% right, 30% incorrect…

See Quotations from Chairman Mao Tse-tung


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