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HST 321 An Important Period of Transition in China (Essay Sample)


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Chong Wang
HST 321
An Important Period of Transition in China
From the founding of the People’s Republic of China in October 1948 to 1956, China has gradually completed the transition from new democracy to socialism. During the transition period, the Chinese Communist Party that was led by chairman Mao creatively opened up a path of socialist transformation suited to China’s characteristics. Mao announced that the main aim for the transition period was to accomplish a socialist transformation of agriculture, capitalist industry and commerce, and handicraft industry (Liu, 2018). This remarkable period shows the important impact of the past on the present. There are five political factors that stand out to explain the influence the transition period brings to society, which are land reform, the social, political classification system, the control of the social mobility, the leadership of rural Party system, and the nature of the political discourse surrounding agricultural collectivization (From lecture). Therefore, the transition period from 1948 to 1956 gives huge impact on the future of China’s economy, industry, and agriculture.
The state in which China was when PRC came into power was influenced by various events that had occurred in the past. Most important, the country was still recovering from the effects of years of warfare. Several factories and mines had been destroyed. Communication, transportation, as well as power systems, had either been destroyed by the war or had undergone deterioration as a result of lack of maintenance. Moreover, agriculture was greatly disrupted, and the production of food had greatly fallen as compared to the pre-war levels (Liu, 2018). The world also experienced one of the worst inflations in history at around this time, further worsening the conditions. Therefore, the policies and programs adopted by the government during the transition period sought to correct these past wrongs. The main goal of the government between 1949 and 1952 was to restore the economy to a working order. Transportation and communication systems were repaired to revive economic activity. The country also nationalized and centralized the banking system. The monetary system was also unified to control inflation.
The most important tasks that Mao proclaimed aimed at promoting national unity, bringing about social and economic change, as well as freedom from all foreign interference. Agricultural collectivization was also an important part of the agenda. To achieve this, there was a need to educate the peasants in order to make them support the revolution. This ushered in the wave of land reforms that led to the death of many citizens. To help restore food production and avoid alienating rich peasants from the regime, they were allowed to keep most of their land. To make the reform successful, party committees were established in the villages. In the urban areas, Mao formed alliances with the intellec

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