China's Long March to Capitalism
After the October 1917 Russian Revolution, the Chinese revolution in 1949 was the second most important event in world history. It led to the abolition of landlordism and capitalism and with it the end of imperialist domination in a huge area of the globe. However, whereas the Russian revolution led to the setting up of a relatively healthy workers’ state established by the working class under the leadership of the Bolshevik Party—a revolutionary party with an internationalist outlook—the 1949 Chinese Revolution led to the immediate setting up of a Stalinist deformed workers’ state.
The Chinese bureaucracy has now succeeded in re-establishing capitalism as the dominant economic force in the country. How this took place over a period of decades is the main subject of this booklet. However, along with the development of capitalism also comes the growth of enormous class differentiation. This has laid the basis for tremendous class conflict in China. It has actually become one of the most unequal societies in the world. The top 20% of the population consumes 50% of overall national income, while the bottom 20% have only a mere 4.7%.
The Chinese working class is destined to play a key role in the coming period. Napoleon is reported to have said that, “China is like a sleeping giant. And when she awakes, she shall astonish the world.” Paraphrasing Napoleon, we can say that today that “sleeping giant” is the Chinese proletariat. When it rises, no force on the planet will be able to stop it and it will transform the whole world situation.
This booklet is based on a document approved by the 2006 World Congress of the International Marxist Tendency. Since it was first written, the process of consolidation of capitalist property relations has accelerated even further. Be sure to visit Marxist.com for the latest news and analysis on this decisive question in world economics and politics.
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