On New Democracy January 15, 1940

  • Timothy Cheek
Part of the The Bedford Series in History and Culture book series (BSHC)


In this essay, Mao begins his effort to organize and categorize the experience of China over the past generation by casting it in a broader narrative of imperialist aggression and “feudal” collaboration with invaders going back a century to the Opium War of 1839–42. “On New Democracy” seeks nothing less than to create a meaningful “history” out of “experience,” to tell the national story of the new China for a broader public in 1940. The telling, naturally, puts the CCP at the center of the story as the savior that can bring the nation back together and lead it to a prosperous and just future. Mao convinced both inner-party audiences of cadres and the broader public of students, urban professionals, independent political activists, and enough of China’s rural population to gain popular support for the CCP in the 1940s as it fought against the GMD (Nationalist party) for the right to rule China.


Communist Party Chinese Communist Party Cultural Revolution Chinese Nation Great Policy 
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  1. 4.
    Karl Marx, “Preface to A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy,” in Selected Works of Marx and Engels English ed. (Moscow: Foreign Languages Publishing House, 1958), 1:363.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Bedford/St. Martin’s 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Timothy Cheek
    • 1
  1. 1.University of British ColumbiaCanada

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