Overview of Chapter X: Presents the life of the Chinese general who amazingly survived the political turmoil of the Long March, the Chinese Revolution, the Cultural Revolution, and the Deng era, despite not always having been allied with Mao Zedong. The chapter also discusses of the role of the People’s Liberation Army, China’s experience in the Vietnam-China War in 1979, and the Xu’s reaction to the events in Tiananmen Square in 1989.
1. Do you seen Xu as being strong or weak person?
2. How should history judge those who make personal compromises in the face of totalitarian authority?
3. When should the army serve the state and when should the state serve the army?
1. Superimpose a map of Xu's Long March on that of the United States with the Oyuwan Soviet being in the position of Atlanta. How close did he come to your home? On your map, what is the closest American city equivalent to the Sichuan Soviet, Garzê, Baxi, and Linze?
2. On Google Images, choose five Chinese propaganda posters from the 1950s and 1960s. What makes these five compelling as compared to other posters of the era?
• This book chapter puts the Cultural Revolution into the broader framework of working towards cultural change in China. See Patricia M. Thornton, “Cultural Revolution,” Afterlives of Chinese Communism: Political Concepts from Mao to Xi,
Christian Sorace, Ivan Franceschini, Nicholas Loubere (eds.) (Canberra: Australian National Press, 2019), 55-61, http://press-files.anu.edu.au/downloads/press/n5354/pdf/ch08.pdf
This documentary focuses on Mao's Long March, but features extensive footage from the era.
This clip shows footage of crowds chanting in support of the Cultural Revolution
This video includes footage of China's invasion of Vietnam in 1979.
Map for Chapter X: This map by the author is in the print edition of the book and show important provinces and cities mentioned in the chapter.
Map for Chapter X: This map by the author is in the print edition of the book and shows the places were X went in the opening of his military career in the early 1930s.
Map for Chapter X: This map by the author is in the print edition of the book and shows the route the members of the Oyuwan Soviet took during the first stage of their Long March.
Map for Chapter X: This map by the author is in the print edition of the book and shows the complicated route Xu took during the Long March while he was in Sichuan.
Map for Chapter X: This map by the author is in the print edition of the book and provides the geographical context for the Western Legion's disastrous campaign into the Hexi Corridor.
This photograph shows Mao Zedong in 1938. Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.