-Tung (Zedong) can be viewed as being on the socio-political level with Marx, Engels, and Lenin. A kind of "genius-tactical-philosopher" but differing from his predicesors. The originality seen in Mao's thought and practice are quickly exemplified in his "Little Red Book": Quotations From Mao Tse-Tung. However, if the reader infers Mao's political ideology within the context of this limited source, a distorted imposition (perhaps planned by editor Lin Pao)(i-ix) presents itself and so, we must take a larger look into how and why this brand of communism developed.
In 1949 a Communist movement won power in China under the leadership of Mao Tse-tung. Founded in 1921, the Chinese Communist party allied with the Kuomintang (Nationalists) in 1923, under orders from the Comintern. By 1927, however, the Nationalists had turned on the Communists, and a long civil war began, during which the Communists received little aid from Moscow. Forced to retreat into the interior (the Long March of 1934-35), the Chinese Communists built their party on peasant support.
During the Second Sino- Japanese War, which began in 1937 and eventually became part of World War II, the party resisted the Japanese more effectively than the Kuomintang and controlled large areas by the end (1945) of the war. By 1949 it had defeated the discredited Kuomintang and gained control of the country.
Although the Chinese Communist party gave lip service to the doctrines of Lenin and Stalin, its Marxism was shaped by its own unique experience and blended with the ideas of Mao. Mao saw humans as engaged in a permanent struggle against nature. He claimed society was driven by contradictions between classes, antagonistic contradictions and between groups nonantagonistic contradictions (Mao,46). These antagonistic contradictions could be solved by revolution, but after the revolution it was necessary to work out the...