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Famine Politics in Maoist China and the Soviet Union by Felix Wemheuer
  

Famine Politics in Maoist China and the Soviet Union

Part of the Yale Agrarian Studies Series Series
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During the twentieth century, 80 percent of all famine victims worldwide died in China and the Soviet Union. The author analyzes the historical and political roots of these famines, in which overambitious industrial programmes endorsed by Stalin and Mao Zedong created greater disasters than those suffered under prerevolutionary regimes.

Synopsis

Famine Politics in Maoist China and the Soviet Union by Felix Wemheuer

During the twentieth century, 80 percent of all famine victims worldwide died in China and the Soviet Union. In this rigorous and thoughtful study, Felix Wemheuer analyzes the historical and political roots of these socialist era famines, in which overambitious industrial programmes endorsed by Stalin and Mao Zedong created greater disasters than those suffered under prerevolutionary regimes. Focusing on famine as a political tool, Wemheuer systematically exposes how conflicts about food among peasants, urban populations, and the socialist state resulted in the starvation to death of millions. A major contribution to Chinese and Soviet history, this provocative analysis examines the long-term effects of the great famines on the relationship between the state and its citizens and argues that the lessons governments learned from the catastrophes enabled them to overcome famine in their later decades of rule.

Reviews

In this bold and innovative study of famine and 'food politics', Wemheuer is intellectually fearless, tackling big questions and bringing a welcome spirit of scholarly dispassion to current debates, while never losing sight of the awfulness of his subject. --Steve Smith, All Souls College, Oxford--Steve Smith (03/25/2014)


About the Author

Felix Wemheuer is assistant professor at the Institute for East Asian Studies at the University of Vienna. He has published three books on twentieth-century Chinese political history and numerous journal articles.

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Book Info

Publication date

26th August 2014

Author

Felix Wemheuer

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Publisher

Yale University Press

Format

Hardback
344 pages

Categories

History
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Asian history
European history
20th century history: c 1900 to c 2000

ISBN

9780300195811

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