Maoism marches on: the revolutionary idea that still shapes the world


This post is by Julia Lovell from Books | The Guardian


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The west has assumed that Maoism, like Soviet communism, has been left in the dust: no European rebels these days carry a Little Red Book. But the ideology is resurgent in China and remains hugely influential elsewhere

In the first week of January 2016, a vast golden statue of Mao, rising up out of frozen brown fields, was unveiled in the middle of the Henan countryside in central China. More than 36 metres high, it cost £312,000 and was paid for by local people and businessmen. Tourists gathered to take selfies, but a few days later, the monument was demolished, apparently for violating planning regulations. Several locals wept as it came down, among them probably descendants of the multitudes – one analyst puts the figure at 7.8 million – who died in Henan during the famine in the 1960s caused by Mao’s policies.

The golden colossus of ...