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Today in Labour History

21 March 1927
'The Life of Peasants is Good after Land Reform'(poster, c 1951)
Source: BG E 15/595

Rural Revolution

Peasants played no role in the revolutionary plans of the Chinese Communist Party until March 1927, when Mao Zedong published his Report on an Investigation of the Peasant Movement in Hunan. In Hunan, several uprisings of poor peasants had occurred during the winter of 1926. Mao had been present and wrote a glowing account of the insurrection. He argued that peasant disaffection was the main potential force for revolution. Mao's report was heretical from the point of view of the Marxist theory of revolution, in that it stressed the role of the peasants and minimized the role of the urban working class, who according to Marxists should lead the Revolution.

Jack Gray, Rebellions and Revolutions. China from the 1800s to 2000 (Oxford 2002) Call no 2003/4952

More info: Chinese Posters, Urban Radicals, Rural Allies (IISH Publication)