Becoming Madame Mao”

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Anchee Min is a Chinese- American author who lives in San Francisco. She was born in 1957 in Shanghai during the communist rule of leader Mao Zedong. When Min was in elementary school, she was chosen to become the leader of the Red Guard, a student group who supported Mao`s ideas and carried out his orders without refuting it. She was brought up during the cultural revolutions and like many other children in China the first thing she heard and taught was “long Live Chairman Mao.” However at the age of 17, she was taken to the countryside where she and her peers were told that they are going there for rehabilitation but were instead sent to a labor camp near the East China Sea. There is she discovered the truth about the man she would have given her life for. In contrast in her early years, she was recruited by a talent scout for Madame Mao`s (Jiang Qing) Shanghai film studio production. Min loved Madame Mao, as she describes her as a great revolutionary protagonist. She mostly liked her because Quin was involved with the Red Guard as she encouraged them to leave their old habits and start a new form of thinking. Through book we learn that Jiang Qing wanted to transform the old social norms and habits to a move to a more communist propaganda, she wanted to do this by modernizing Chinese opera into on that supports both Chairman Mao and herself. But after Mao`s death, Madame Mao and the gang of four were disgraced, discredited and sent to prison as they were seen as a threat to Deng Xiao Ping and the new government. Because of Madame Mao`s arrest, Min was left to basic domestic chores. In 1984, she managed to escape to the United States with the help of her friend. Min has a gained a lot of experience while growing up in China, as s...

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..., run by the old boys, with her own.” (Min 305) Another part is her involvement in the Cultural Revolution as she organized revolutionary plays, she persuaded young people to help her launch the revolution and push the cultural shift for communist propaganda. As watched in the documentary in class, she offered her support for the launch of the Red Guard by Mao, and also encouraged the attack on China`s high officials who were viewed to be moving away from communist ways.
Anchee Min provides readers a historical and political overview of Madame Mao’s life. Min gives an overview about the struggles. What captivates the reader is the fact that all the characters in the book were actually real. The book gives insightful details about how China was in the past, and the struggles people there went through. Moreover, it is very much coherent with the in class documentary.

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