HISC 6210 The PRC: China Under Communism

In 1949, as Mao Zedong declared the founding of the Peoples Republic of China, the Chinese people were once again under a united government, ending decades of civil strife and foreign aggression. Yet the year 1949 represented only the military victory of the CCP, and in the following decades the new rulers of China would attempt to recreate state and society on a previously unimaginable scale. This course explores the dramatic years following the establishment of the PRC and follows the mass campaigns and political upheavals that marked Chinese history under the rule of the Communist Party. Attention will be given to both mass movements in the countryside and events that largely affected urban dwellers and intellectuals. Overall, this course aims at understanding the large-scale structural changes of the revolutionary era of 1949 to 1976 and its aftermath, as well as what these changes meant for the lives of individual Chinese citizens.