When Chairman Mao Tse-tung made the Declaration of the People’s Republic of China in Tienanmen Square on the 1st October 1949 he ushered in one of the most important periods in the history of the international working class and peasantry, second only in importance to the Great October Socialist Revolution in Russia in 1917.
The country with a quarter of the world’s population joined the country (the Soviet Union) with a sixth of the world’s land mass on the difficult journey towards Communism, along the difficult and often unknown road of the construction of Socialism. Fascism had been defeated in both Europe and Asia, principally at the hands of forces organised and led by Marxist-Leninists. There was real reason for the workers and peasants, the oppressed and exploited, the dispossessed and downtrodden of the world to be optimistic for the future.
And for just under 30 years the People’s Republic of China, under the leadership of the Communist Party of China, carried out the task placed upon them in an admirable manner. Mistakes were made but lessons were learnt from those mistakes. New ways were found to confront old problems. The aggression of capitalism and imperialism was faced down in many parts of the globe, with varying degrees of success.
Treacherous and perfidious revisionism, the bane of the revolutionary Marxist movement from the earliest of days, was able to gain a hold in too many minds of too many members of the world’s Communist and Workers Parties and the movement was split – the only winners being capitalism and imperialism.
In response to this Chairman Mao and the Communist Party of China raised the banner of the Great Socialist Cultural Revolution in 1966 – an attempt to involve the mass of people in deciding which direction the country would follow, forward to Communism or backward to Capitalism. Although many successes were achieved and many new lessons learnt ((all valuable for those to come in future struggles) even that innovative revolutionary movement failed in its aims, the Chinese Revisionists (‘Capitalist-roaders’, as they were described in China) being able to gain power in a coup soon after Chairman Mao’s death on 9th September 1976.
However, before that setback the people of China had made great and innumerable strides forward in all aspects of life. Marxism-Leninism, the political theory exclusively the property of workers and peasants, was taken to the higher level of Maoism. The experience gained in socialist economics, first developed in the Socialist Soviet Union, in the fields of collective and state property relations were refined, developed and taken along new avenues.
The studying of new, revolutionary ideas in the field of philosophy by workers and peasants became a reality as they struggled against the ancient, backward and feudalistic way of thinking of Confucius. Art and literature was placed in the hands of the people and promoted so that they could develop a new form of expression, representing and championing their interests and aspirations. Women and youth were given a real and substantial say in how the society should develop, challenging the hierarchical structure so deeply embedded in so-called ‘traditional’ society. As in all true revolutions the Chinese workers and peasants ‘turned the world upside down’.
As did the Soviet Union in the 1930s and 40s the Chinese Socialist state produced many documents in order to educate and inform the people’s of the world of what was happening in the developing Socialist country and to encourage those oppressed throughout the world to follow the Chinese example.
Over a period of time the desire is to make many of those documents and pamphlets available on pages related to this one.