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The Spiral Road: Change in a Chinese Village Through the Eyes of a Communist Party Leader

3.84  ·  Rating Details ·  44 Ratings  ·  5 Reviews
The leading Party cadre of Lin Village in southeast China describes in this book nearly fifty years of turbulent events that affected individuals and families in the village: the downfall of the landlords during the Land Reform, the rise of poor peasants to political power, the political fanaticism of the Great Leap Forward and the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution, an ...more
Paperback, Second Edition, 272 pages
Published April 3rd 1998 by Westview Press (first published August 15th 1989)
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Toby White
Jun 11, 2008 Toby White rated it it was amazing
I've just finished reading about twenty books on the aftermath of the Great Leap Forward. In many ways, this one was the best. That's odd, because scholars have largely ignored the book.

Spiral Road is exactly what its subtitle states. It is largely a series of personal reminiscences by P.S. Ye, a provincial Communist Party cadre, about his life as a commune leader in Fujian Province. It is hard to tell how much we're seeing Ye and how much Huang, but the book manages to be, in parts funny profo
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Yang
Feb 21, 2015 Yang rated it really liked it
Recommend only for the sake of the P.S.Ye whose social existence has really been preserved in this ethnographic account.
Chris Canary
Dec 19, 2015 Chris Canary rated it it was amazing
Best book I've read on China's development from the '50s to the early '90s (and I've read about a dozen). The author, an anthropologist, retells the story of the transformation of a village in SE China in an engaging, insightful, and thorough way. Read this book if you want to get into the nitty gritty of China's history of land redistribution policies, as well as how villages changed after the late '70s reform and opening period.

Crystal
Feb 16, 2012 Crystal rated it really liked it
An interesting look into China during the various policies passed after the Liberation. Plenty of things I both did and didn't know about the effects of the policies passed. This book provides more of an analysis from the main informant, P.S. Ye rather than from the author which I honestly found refreshing and more of a challenge to read and make my own analysis.
Meagan
May 07, 2013 Meagan rated it really liked it
(unfinished review) A very humanizing perspective..
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