Communist China's Economy, 1949-1962: Structural Changes and Crisis

By Cheng Chu-Yuan | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 4 AGRICULTURAL COLLECTIVIZsATION

Primarily agrarian society of pre-war China was confronted with two critical problems -- the growing agrarian population and the scarcity of agricultural capital. Of China's 9.6 million square kilometers of territory, only 250 million acres were cultivated, and the low capital formation made expansion of arable land extremely difficult. Consequently, the per capita distribution was only 0.45 acres; as opposed to 2.01 in Russia, and 8.04 in the United States1. Since 85 per cent of the population was engaged in agriculture as a livelihood, the average holding was extremely small. According to a study of the 1929-33 period, including 16,786 farms in twenty-two provinces, the average unit contained about 25.4 mou (4.23 acres), compared with 39.74 acres in Denmark, 77.3 acres in England and Wales, and 156.85 acres in the United States2.

Concentration of land in the hands of a few was prevented by China's traditional system of land inheritance. Instead of a primogeniture system, land was subdivided among the various heirs. Since the size of the average farm was sufficient only for the support of its occupants, it became apparent that, mere redistribution could not solve the land shortage. Thus, the central problem became the increase of arable land, yet the low net return from agriculture made it virtually impossible for the agricultural sector to accumulate the Capital required for such reclamation. While the arable land acreage remained relatively constant for half a century, the rural population continued to increase. Consequently, the pressures of population on land became serious. In this situation, a more equitable distribution of the existing land tended to become a matter Of urgent concern.

It was in this basic background that Mao Tse-tung was to make mobilization of the peasantry through land distribution the primary concern of his revolutionary strategy. As far back as the pre-1925 revolutionary period, Mao had emphasized that land distribution among the peasants was the basic starting-point for all problems relating to the Chinese revolution. He recognized that since the power of the bourgeoisie still was very strong in the urban areas, the only possible path to communist victory lay in transforming the backward rural areas into communist military bases 3. Prior to the 1949 victory,for more than 22 years the Chinese Communists had penetrated deeply into the villages. Villages were strategically

-22-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Communist China's Economy, 1949-1962: Structural Changes and Crisis
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page i
  • Foreword iii
  • Preface v
  • Contents vii
  • List of Tables ix
  • Other Books by the Same Author xi
  • Abbreviations xii
  • Chapter 1 Introduction 1
  • References 3
  • Chapter 2 Major Features of China's Pre-Communist Economic Structure 4
  • References 9
  • Chapter 3 Chinese Communist Theories and Policies for Economic Structural Transformation 11
  • References 19
  • Chapter 4 Agricultural Collectivizsation 22
  • References 56
  • Chapter 5 Transformation of the Private Sector into the State-Operated Sector 60
  • References 82
  • Chapter 6 Establishment of the Central Planning Machinery and State Monopoly 84
  • References 104
  • Chapter 7 Basic Changes in the Component of the National Product 106
  • Chapter 8 Famine and Crisis 128
  • References 153
  • Chapter 9 Significance and Prospects 157
  • References 172
  • Chapter 10 Conclusion 175
  • Appendix a Note on Communist China's Statistical Data 181
  • References 189
  • Appendix II Conversion Tables 191
  • Selected Bibliography 194
  • Index 208
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 218

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.