IB History: The Great Leap Forward

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IB History: The Great Leap Forward

  1. 1. THE GREAT LEAP FORWARD The Second Five-Year Plan 1958-1962
  2. 2. Key Dates <ul><li>1956 Collectivization began </li></ul><ul><li>1957 Hundred Flowers movement and Anti-Rightist Campaign </li></ul><ul><li>1958-1962 Second-Five Year Plan Widespread famine in China </li></ul><ul><li>1958 Mao Zedong gave up presidency of PRC </li></ul><ul><li>1959 LuShan conference and Tibetan uprising </li></ul><ul><li>1962 Panchen Lama’s report Liu Shao Qi and Deng Xiaoping appointed to tackle famine </li></ul>
  3. 3. The Great Leap Forward <ul><ul><ul><li>A five year plan to develop the agriculture and industry in China </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>1958-1963 </li></ul></ul></ul>
  4. 4. Second Five Year plan <ul><li>Introduced in 1958 to great fanfares </li></ul><ul><li>Targets and quotas constantly set and reset </li></ul><ul><li>Not based on sound economic analysis </li></ul><ul><li>They were plucked from the air on a whim </li></ul><ul><li>Acts in faith in Communism </li></ul><ul><li>Were revised upwards to impress Mao’s call for collective effort </li></ul>
  5. 5. The Great Leap Forward <ul><li>What do you see in the picture? </li></ul><ul><li>What are the people doing? </li></ul><ul><li>Why are the people there? </li></ul><ul><li>Who are these people? </li></ul><ul><li>How many people do you think are in the picture? </li></ul><ul><li>How do they feel about the Great Leap Forward, and how does this affect them? </li></ul>
  6. 6. Mao Ze Dong’s Aims <ul><li>‘ to overtake all capitalist countries in a fairly short time, and become one of the richest, most advanced and powerful countries in the world’ </li></ul><ul><li>Said in Moscow 1957 </li></ul>
  7. 7. Why are the people there? <ul><li>Mao Zedong organized the Great Leap Forward </li></ul><ul><li>To become a communist nation </li></ul><ul><li>And catch up with Great Britain and Russia </li></ul><ul><li>‘ The imperialists are like the sun at five o’clock in the afternoon while we are like the sun at six o’clock in the morning. The East win is bound to prevail over the West wind because we are powerful and strong.’ </li></ul>
  8. 8. Why Great Leap? <ul><li>Sputnik, Autumn 1957 </li></ul><ul><li>Soviet Union economic achievement </li></ul><ul><li>Wanted China to succeed differently </li></ul><ul><li>Wanted “Self-reliance” </li></ul><ul><li>Quote from Mao </li></ul>, ,
  9. 9. INEQUALITIES BETWEEN RICH AND POOR Many peasants were on military service and were away from their villages Small units of land No farm machinery, no fertilisers Old-fashioned methods of farming by hand. The ordinary people lived in great poverty, poor housing, working long hours, often in dangerous conditions, for low pay, poor health, little education. In the countryside, most of the land was owned by a few rich landowners In the cities, factories and businesses were owned by an elite rich. Years of foreign and civil wars had caused widespread damage to Chinese industry. Lack of investment Outdated machines Damage to transport systems –roads, rail, bridges ECONOMIC PROBLEMS FACING CHINA IN 1949 PROBLEMS FACING CHINA IN 1949 FARMING INDUSTRY
  10. 10. Mao's Economic Reform Plan: MAO’s REFORM PROGRAMMES INDUSTRY FARMING 1953-1957 - 1 ST FIVE YEAR PLAN 1950 - LAND REFORM ACT EXPANSION OF HEAVY INDUSTRIES: IRON + STEEL, COAL, MACHINERY 1952 – MUTUAL AID TEAMS COLLECTIVISATION 1953 – CO-OPERATIVE FARMS 1955 – COLLECTIVE FARMS 1958-1963 - 2 ND FIVE YEAR PLAN : THE GREAT LEAP FORWARD THE ‘BACKYARD’ STEEL CAMPAIGN COMMUNES EXTREME COMMUNIST LIFESTYLE FARM PRODUCE TO PAY FOR FOREIGN MACHINERY PEASANTS USED TO HELP EXPAND STEEL PRODUCTION
  11. 11. 1. What is meant by the term 'heavy industries'? The steel works at Anshan in Manchuria, built in the 1950s Heavy industries’ are those basic industries that a country needs to develop before other areas of its economy can expand. Iron Coal Steel Oil Cement Chemical Fertilizer
  12. 12. Why did Mao want to develop Heavy Industries first? Identify the various materials that were needed to construct the features shown below. How does this help answer the question above? Nanjing Bridge over the Yangzi River Steel -bridge spars Girders – Steel Steel -Deisel engine Steel – railway lines Steel - pipes Iron -Railings Steel - Motor Vehicles Iron – lamp posts Ships IRON COAL CEMENT OIL RUBBER
  13. 13. MAO'S ECONOMIC AIMS Mao wanted China to be a great military power which could dominate other countries. But China was poor and over 90% of its population were peasant farmers. If China was to be strong, prosperous and independent, then both Chinese industry and farming had to be reformed. HOW WAS THIS TO BE ACHIEVED? 1. FIVE YEAR PLANS were introduced - based on the Russian model. Russian advisers were brought in to help. 2. IRON AND STEEL - Mao made iron and steel production the central focus of his industrial reform programme. Why? 3. FARMING REFORMS - The cost of modernising industry would have to be paid by selling Chinese farm produce. Mao saw that Chinese farming also needed to be reformed.
  14. 14. WHO IS BEING SHOWN ON THIS POSTER? WHAT MESSAGE DO YOU THINK THIS POSTER IS MAKING? That Communist Russia and Communist China are close friends, and should help each other. That Chinese people can learn from Russia’s example.
  15. 15. 2. How was the 'Five Year Plan' organised? The idea for Five Year Plans was borrowed from Stalin’s Russia. It involved the ideas of: NATIONALISATION - CENTRAL PLANNING - TARGETS / QUOTAS - INCENTIVES - Private businesses and industries are taken over and run by the national government – state control. All decisions about the economy are decided by the central [national] government. To increase output the government sets production ‘targets’ which have to be met within a 5 year time span. To encourage workers [and supervisors] to work harder to reach the targets set, ‘incentives’ are offered eg. bigger food ration, better apartment, better schooling for their children.
  16. 16. We will protect the honour of the Red Flag! The Five Year Plans were accompanied by major propaganda Campaigns What was the idea behind this poster?
  17. 17. We devote our greatest strength to socialism!, 1954
  18. 18. Reform of Industry <ul><li>Mao resolved to achieve ‘lift-off’ for China </li></ul><ul><li>He got together the nation’s greatest resource: </li></ul><ul><li>It’s population </li></ul>
  19. 19. Mao’s belief <ul><li>The collectivized peasants would produce a surplus of food </li></ul><ul><li>This food could be sold abroad to raise money to expand Chinese industry </li></ul>
  20. 20. Mao’s belief <ul><li>Workers would create with their hands a modern industrial economy </li></ul><ul><li>This would be powerful enough to compete with the USSR and the capitalist West </li></ul>
  21. 21. Mass Effort <ul><li>Mao assumed the increase in output and effort of people could be increased </li></ul><ul><li>Emphasis was on heavy industry and large projects </li></ul><ul><li>Sheer manpower could solve the problems of industrial development </li></ul>
  22. 22. The emperor of the blue ants <ul><li>Mechanical diggers were shunned favor of the hands of workers </li></ul><ul><li>Bridges, canals and dams were constructed </li></ul><ul><li>Thousands dressed in identical blue uniforms </li></ul><ul><li>Propaganda newsreels showed this as well </li></ul>
  23. 23. Tiananmen Square Built <ul><li>Began in 1957 </li></ul><ul><li>Completed within 2 years </li></ul><ul><li>Mao wanted it to be bigger than Moscow’s red square </li></ul>
  24. 24. Mao works? <ul><li>Visited the Ming Tombs Reservoir outside Beijing </li></ul><ul><li>Picked up a spade and joined in the digging for half and hour </li></ul><ul><li>Doctor’s take? </li></ul><ul><li>Propaganda photo </li></ul>
  25. 25. Two great soldiers <ul><li>Chinese spoke figuratively of two great soldiers </li></ul><ul><li>‘ General Grain’ </li></ul><ul><li>‘ General Steel’ </li></ul>
  26. 26. Backyard Furnaces <ul><li>Mao’s naive belief was producing masses of steel would solve China’s economic problems </li></ul><ul><li>Insisted on construction of ‘backyard furnaces’ </li></ul><ul><li>China would draw supplies of iron and steel from large foundries, mills and small family kiln </li></ul>
  27. 27. Backyard Furnace <ul><li>At Mao’s command, the Chinese people rushed to build their little furnaces </li></ul><ul><li>Became a national movement </li></ul><ul><li>Flames at night </li></ul><ul><li>Smoke during the day </li></ul><ul><li>Roderick MacFarquar </li></ul>
  28. 28. Zhongnanhai Furnaces <ul><li>Hundreds of furnaces found </li></ul><ul><li>Each turned out quota of home-made steel </li></ul><ul><li>Excited officials reported back to Beijing </li></ul><ul><li>Goodwill did not necessarily produce good steel </li></ul>
  29. 29. Backyard Furnaces
  30. 30. Propaganda Posters
  31. 31. Home-made goods <ul><li>Worthless steel </li></ul><ul><li>Most of it was unrecognizable </li></ul><ul><li>Pots, pans and bicycles to make a sculpture </li></ul><ul><li>Turned into a hard blob </li></ul><ul><li>Goodwill did not produce good steel </li></ul>
  32. 32. Weakness of campaign <ul><li>All steel that was created was unusable in any practical way </li></ul><ul><li>Great Leap Forward symbolized lots of energy and endeavor, but little substance </li></ul><ul><li>A heavy environmental price was also paid e.g. deforestation of China </li></ul>
  33. 33. State owned enterprises <ul><li>SOE’s fulfilled notion of centrally controlled industry </li></ul><ul><li>Wanted industry under total government direction </li></ul><ul><li>No profit-making concerns </li></ul><ul><li>No bargaining </li></ul><ul><li>Prices, output targets and wages were fixed by the state </li></ul>
  34. 34. Falling of SOE’s <ul><li>Inefficient </li></ul><ul><li>SOE’s were given state subsidies </li></ul><ul><li>Workers received guaranteed wages </li></ul><ul><li>No motivation for managers or workers </li></ul><ul><li>No initiative </li></ul><ul><li>Payment the same </li></ul>
  35. 35. What do you see in the picture? <ul><li>Lots of people </li></ul><ul><li>Construction of the Shi Man Tan Reservoir </li></ul><ul><li>During the late 1950s </li></ul>
  36. 36. What are the people doing? <ul><li>Building a large scale industrial project </li></ul><ul><li>To further China’s modernization </li></ul><ul><li>They are carrying buckets of earth and stone </li></ul><ul><li>People are exhausted and hungry due to their long work in the sun </li></ul>
  37. 37. Who are these people? How many people do you think are in the picture? <ul><li>25,000 peasant workers </li></ul><ul><li>They moved 717,000 cubic meters of earth and 55,850 meters of stone by hand </li></ul><ul><li>Organized into “People’s Communes” where they ate, slept, and worked together </li></ul>
  38. 38. How do they feel about the Great Leap Forward, and how does this affect them? <ul><li>People’s Commune officials kept imprecise records of which workers did what </li></ul><ul><li>Food shortages, droughts and floods, and economic problems </li></ul><ul><li>Hundreds of thousands of people died in one of the largest famines in history </li></ul><ul><li>Communist Party abandoned China in 1961 </li></ul>
  39. 39. <ul><li>http://brian.hoffert.faculty.noctrl.edu/HST265/21.DeepeningTheRevolution.html </li></ul><ul><li>http://chineseposters.net/themes/great-leap-forward.php </li></ul>
  40. 40. THE GREAT LEAP FORWARD
  41. 41. Main Events of the Great Leap <ul><li>Peasants organised into huge communes (approx. 24,000 across China) </li></ul><ul><li>State quotas demanded from each commune – what was left was for the commune </li></ul><ul><li>Individuals were paid in ‘work points’, which could be regained from commune stores in form of food, clothes, other items. </li></ul>
  42. 42. Main Events of the Great Leap <ul><li>Commune canteens fed everyone; commune nurseries looked after children; commune ‘happy homes’ provided for the elderly. </li></ul><ul><li>Autumn 1958 saw the decision that all communes should produce their own steel via ‘backyard steel furnaces’ – this instruction was unrelated to the availability of local resources. </li></ul>
  43. 43. Main Events of the Great Leap <ul><li>Much revolutionary ardour was expended upon the furnaces, and much woodland cut down for them – huge long-term environmental cost. </li></ul><ul><li>Most of the steel produced was of poor quality and un-useable. </li></ul><ul><li>Good harvest in 1958 also encouraged the Central Committee to propose unrealistically high targets for future production, which were enthusiastically embraced by commune officials. </li></ul>
  44. 44. Problems with the Great Leap <ul><li>Revolutionary enthusiasm, state propaganda, and ideology, all contributed to the unwillingness to face up to the reality of the Great Leap from 1959 onwards – that it was failing tragically. </li></ul><ul><li>While communes failed to meet their high targets, the state continued to take its promised share of grain, leaving virtually nothing for commune members. </li></ul>
  45. 45. Problems with the Great Leap <ul><li>Peasants had also been encouraged to use new, and seriously, flawed, methods of grain production (resulting from Mao’s obsession with the ideas of discredited Soviet agronomist Lysenko). </li></ul><ul><li>This led to even worse grain production </li></ul><ul><li>Furthermore, natural disasters – drought and flooding – destroyed much of the subsequent three years’ harvest. </li></ul><ul><li>Chinese later called these the “Three Bitter Years”. </li></ul>
  46. 46. Problems with the Great Leap <ul><li>Even as grain production was failing, reports continued to be made of bumper harvests. </li></ul><ul><li>Wide-scale famine caused starvation and instances of cannibalism </li></ul><ul><li>Death rate from these years is estimated at between 20 and 30 million </li></ul>
  47. 47. Peng De Huai’s Opposition <ul><li>Peng was a senior figure in the CCP, a comrade of Mao’s for 30 years, and a respected soldier. </li></ul><ul><li>He held position of Minister of Defence </li></ul><ul><li>He had had differences with Mao on previous occasions, and shown he was not cowed by Mao’s authority. </li></ul><ul><li>On a visit to his home province in Hunan (next to Mao’s home province) he noted the reality of the Great Leap. </li></ul>
  48. 48. Peng De Huai’s Opposition <ul><li>He was clearly affected by the general poverty, including the poor conditions in the ‘happy home’. </li></ul><ul><li>He also understood that figures were unrealistic – asking the local manager about the tendency to exaggerate. </li></ul><ul><li>Peng determined to bring the failures of the Great Leap to Mao’s attention </li></ul>
  49. 49. Peng De Huai’s Opposition <ul><li>In July 1959 the CCP’s Central Committee gathered at Lushan for a conference to assess the Great Leap </li></ul><ul><li>Peng wrote a private letter to Mao outlining the problems he had seen </li></ul><ul><li>Mao angrily copied the letter to everyone and denounced Peng </li></ul><ul><li>Mao also appeared to threaten civil war against opponents – “If the Chinese People’s Liberation Army should follow Peng Dehuai, I will go to fight guerrilla war.” </li></ul>
  50. 50. Peng De Huai’s Opposition <ul><li>Peng had recently visited the Soviet Union, and coinciding with his own criticism was a published attack on the Great Leap experiment by Khrushchev in Russia. </li></ul><ul><li>This led to accusations that Peng was a Soviet mole </li></ul><ul><li>Peng had been outmanouevred, no-one supported him, and he was stripped of office and exiled. </li></ul><ul><li>The conference swung into line behind Mao </li></ul><ul><li>Peng died in detention during the Cultural Revolution (1974), being posthumously rehabilitated in 1996. </li></ul>
  51. 51. Who was responsible for the Great Leap failure? <ul><li>Natural disasters certainly played a part – bad weather conditions were responsible for the famine </li></ul><ul><li>Jack Gray cites Liu Shaoqi, as saying the disasters were 70 per cent “man made”, but points out the left denied this. </li></ul><ul><li>Gray also credits Mao with facing up to the famine and accepting responsibility at Lushan </li></ul>
  52. 52. Who was responsible for the Great Leap failure? <ul><li>Nonetheless, after Lushan, Mao did nothing to correct the problems of the Great Leap. </li></ul><ul><li>He withdrew from public life (resigning as President – or Chairman – of the PRC) and left his successor, Liu, and others to deal with the aftermath. </li></ul><ul><li>The situation was also clearly worsened by the attitude of the state in promoting exaggerated targets, and collecting and selling grain needed by peasants. </li></ul>
  53. 53. Did the Great Leap achieve anything? <ul><li>Some successful flood and irrigation schemes were carried out as a result of the mass mobilisation of the Great Leap – although Jung Chang points out (“Mao: The Unknown Story”) that many of the reservoirs associated with these collapsed with disastrous consequences in later years. </li></ul><ul><li>Women were brought into the work force for the first time – continuing the process of liberating women in China. </li></ul>
  54. 54. Did the Great Leap achieve anything? <ul><li>The diversification of the countryside economy, although a failure at the time, was more successfully reintroduced in the 1980s. </li></ul><ul><li>Access to education increased, thanks to communal development. </li></ul><ul><li>Uranium prospecting formed the basis of China’s successful nuclear development </li></ul><ul><li>The famine deaths were no worse than earlier in the century – before the CCP came to power. </li></ul>
  55. 55. “ Mao advocated…mobilising China’s human resources, combining local initiative with the spirit of self-sacrifice and self-sufficiency in a new community structure” Alan Lawrance “ Mao was the driving force behind this scheme. It failed. Mao, sidelined as a result, could be said ‘to have learned nothing and forgotten nothing’” - Lawrance
  56. 56. What happened next? <ul><li>With Mao’s withdrawal, the control of economic life fell to his colleagues – notably Liu Shaoqi (now president) and Deng Xiaoping. </li></ul><ul><li>In 1962 they began restoring private plots to peasants </li></ul><ul><li>Communes were substantially reduced down </li></ul><ul><li>Factory and industrial workers saw bonuses and incentives restored to help boost production. </li></ul>
  57. 57. What happened next? <ul><li>The retrenchment policies were influenced considerably by the observations and reports of respected Politburo member Chen Yun, in summer 1961 (see Spence, p.559) </li></ul><ul><li>However, as the party pursued retrenchment, it was also becoming apparent that many rural cadres were abusing their positions (Spence, p.560-561). </li></ul>
  58. 58. What happened next? <ul><li>The concerns over corruption coincided with Mao’s increasing restlessness at being on the sidelines – he complained of being treated “like a dead ancestor”. </li></ul><ul><li>The Socialist Education Campaign, established in 1962, was to be the vehicle for rooting out corrupt practices. </li></ul><ul><li>It also ended up containing the seeds of the Cultural Revolution, and Mao’s return to supreme power. </li></ul>

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