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Knight, Nicholas James (1982) Mao and history : An interpretive essay on some problems in Mao Zedong's philosophy of history. PhD thesis. SOAS University of London. DOI:

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This study analyses. four problem areas in Mao Zedong's philosophy of history. Firstly, it provides an analysis of the way in which Mao perceived causation operating in social and historical terms. Secondly, the problem of historical time and the future is examined; this involves an examination of the forms of historical periodization utilized by Mao, and his vision of the future of society. Thirdly, a brief analysis is provided of an important element of Mao's philosophy of science, the manner in which he approached the formulation of laws of society and history. Fourthly, an interpretation is offered of Mao's "Sinification of Marxism"; the way in which Mao could espouse a "universal" theory of history, and insist on its integration with Chinese national particularities without detracting from the universality of that theory. An attempt has also been made to determine the relationship between these different elements of Mao's philosophy of history. The study is based on and employs several methodological devices. The first of these is the utilization of an exegetical approach; consequently, the analysis offered limits itself to a close textual study and interpretation of the Mao documents. Secondly, the study has adopted a periodization which divides the development of Mao's thought into six periods, four of which are subjected to analysis: (1) The Yan'an period, 1936-45;, (2) the period of Civil War and Consolidation, 1946-54; (3) the post-Cooperativization period, 1955-64; and (4) the Cultural Revolution, 1965-69. The study concentrates on the Yan'an and post-Cooperativization periods. While these two methodological procedures guide and structure the study, the content of the study in turn serves as a test of their utility and validity.

Item Type: Theses (PhD)
SOAS Departments & Centres: SOAS Research Theses > Proquest
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 16 Oct 2018 15:02

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