The Effects Of Western Imperialism In China

912 Words2 Pages

The late 19th century and the beginning of the early 20th century marks a critical turning point in Chinese history. The high pressures of western imperialism and regenerated peasant revolutions caused a sudden shift in the Chinese social order. The fear of western imperialism caused a demand for modernization, self-strengthening, and defense. Sons of the traditional landlord-bureaucratic lost confidence in Confucian values and traditional institutions; this elite class was too weak to withhold foreign invasion. The sons of the gentry, soon became the most important contributors to the revolution that would rise up against the Confucius bureaucrats intellectuals. The new revolutionaries visioned not only a fortified, modern China with a powerful defense system, but also a unified country. One without “class struggle” or the unfair socio-economic differences between the impoverished masses and higher social classes. To achieve this new political vision, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) was formed in 1921 but not with ease. Chiang Kai-shek, the leader of China and its national party, embarked on a bloody civil war between the nationalists and the newly formed CCP. The Communist party was defeated in 1927, but came back strong with an improved army in the early thirties, namely the People’s Liberation Army. The CCP, lead by its chairman Mao Zedong, successfully recovered with this powerful army and social unification for a better China for the masses. Maoism, the socialist theories of Mao, soon moved from the cities to the countrysides and a victory against the Chinese nationalists was forged in 1949. Chairman Mao along with the CCP believed strongly in marxist economic theories and ideology. People of the early 20th century r... ... middle of paper ... ... production numbers by twenty-five percent (Dietrich, 85) Mao's did gain state control of grain but the production did not rise to his expectations. In other words the state procured about eighty percent of the produced grain while actual production only rose between 1-2 percent. This fault correlates to the mutual aid teams which were played a key role during the Five Year Plan. In order to collectivize, and lean more towards socialist and Marxist ideologies, mutual aid teams put together small farming villages that were supposed to develop into one hundred to three hundred households. In this case, peasants would share tools, land, and work collectively and more efficiently. The collectivization during the Five Year Plan had the adverse effect. There was peasant resistance and poor harvest while the expectation was to raise agricultural production by a fourth.

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