Mao's Little Red Book: A Global History

Mao's Little Red Book: A Global History

Alexander C. Cook

Language: English

Pages: 299

ISBN: 1107665647

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


Mao Zedong's Little Red Book (Quotations from Chairman Mao) - a compilation of the Chinese leader's speeches and writings - is one of the most visible and ubiquitous symbols of twentieth-century radicalism. Published for the first time in 1964, it rapidly became the must-have accessory for Red Guards and revolutionaries from Berkeley to Bamako. Yet, despite its worldwide circulation and enduring presence there has, until now, been no serious scholarly effort to understand this seminal text as a global historical phenomenon. Mao's Little Red Book brings together a range of innovative scholars from around the world to explore the fascinating variety of uses and forms that Mao's Quotations has taken, from rhetoric, art and song, to talisman, badge, and weapon. The authors of this pioneering volume use Mao's Quotations as a medium through which to re-examine the history of the twentieth-century world, challenging established ideas about the book to reveal its remarkable global impact.

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undertaking was seen as an invaluable contribution to socialist internationalism and to the development of global revolution. This chapter details how, when, and by whom the text of the Little Red Book was translated, and how the book itself, as a material object, came to stock bookshelves around the world. Drawing on oral history interviews, memoirs, and archival research, this chapter argues that the global success of the Little Red Book should be seen as part of New China’s extended efforts to

celebrated its wide distribution as “the most joyful thing in the whole world.”43 The translation of Selected Works of Mao Zedong played a significant role in setting up the means of translation and distribution of Mao’s writings in the 1950s and 1960s. To a certain degree, the organization of the translation of Quotations from Chairman Mao followed the same format. In May 1953, at the invitation of the Foreign Languages Press, a Mr. Russell, the manager of a British communist bookstore, came to

unified dedication of ujamaa villagers would fuel national development. Whereas villagization began as an experimental and voluntary effort, it morphed into a compulsory drive (known as Operation Vijiji [Villages]) between 1973 and 1975 in which millions of peasants were forcefully resettled. By the end of Operation Vijiji, the Tanzanian rural landscape had been superficially transformed, but substantive ujamaa had not been Maoism in Tanzania 99 achieved, since TANU had exchanged the original

projected as the charismatic chairman of India’s most ardent, antirevisionist Marxist–Leninists. According to some former Naxalites, Charu Majumdar was solely responsible for the propagation of the cult of Mao, the elevation of the Little Red Book to the status of relic, and the overly mechanical application of the Chinese model to India. As a result, some blame him for the precipitous decline of the movement in Bengal in the early 1970s. Integrating the views of former Naxalites, the problem

Carlos Tapia, Las Fuerzas Armadas y Sendero Luminoso: Dos estrategias y un final (Lima: Instituto de Estudios Peruanos, 1997). Carlos Iván Degregori, “Harvesting Storms: Peasant Rondas and the Defeat of Sendero Luminoso in Ayacucho,” in Steve J. Stern, ed., Shining and Other Paths: War and Society in Peru, 1980–1995 (Durham: Duke University Press, 1998), pp. 131–40; Orin Starn, ed., Hablan los ronderos: La búsqueda por la paz en los Andes, Documento de Trabajo 45 (Lima: Instituto de Estudios

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