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Mao Zedong's Impact on the Chinese Revolution of 1949

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The 1949 Revolution was a climatic ending on the discussion of who would control the Chinese government. The victory of the Chinese Communist Party of which was led by Mao Zedong in 1949, was a conclusion that positively impacted China altering its society to an advanced industrial and military superpower that had found its way on the worldwide stage. The outcome of the revolution was due to many factors but ultimately Mao was the key within the revolution being successful, so much so that historian Chen Boda had given him the honore of labelling him “As important as Confucius”. It can be argued that without his presence the revolution would have been effectively delayed. The Chinese Communist Party led the country to national independence and unification, and the new political system allowed fast industrialisation, Mao use of self-formed ideologies such as Maoism and his view of socialism as well as his use of a variety of policies aided in the solving of the countries various setbacks. Turning the nation that was dealing with striking factors such as a 60% child mortality, 5 to 1 death to birth rate and the terrible hygiene, as well as many other factors. Into a reputable powerhouse. Mao made great use of his wits which was seen with the performance of many strategic moves and propagandic actions to be able restructure and cater top the poor population in a manner that simultaneously made them more supportive of the regime and encourage them to produce appropriately for the country. Without Mao overall array of quickly throughout and well structured actions the CCP win within the 1949 revolution would of been non-existent.

Mao had approached the revolution with his eyes not set on immediate power but long-term change. He set on breaking down the flaw constitutions that had plagued China and led the country to be a cesspool of corruption. One of his levels of attack was directed at feudal landlords and the social structure that had supported them. This idea was supported by Mao implantation of laws that stated “Anyone not active in denouncing landlords will be stoned to death'. And his proposition of establishing a completely new political, cultural, and economic order, including the establishment of a people's army, people's courts at all levels of jurisdiction, peasant associations throughout the countryside, and workers' councils in industrial enterprises. In the aforementioned essay and elsewhere, Mao stood strong on the CPC goal to create a nation run by communism, a society which the working classes would control their own collective and the state would step back from direct interference, with mao believing revolution should “waged only by mobilizing the masses and relying on them”. These confiscation of land from landlords and later handing to the peasantry, were very popular and highlighted the striking difference between the CPC and the GMD, whom focused only on the needs of rich urban classes, CCP showed a real interest in the welfare of common people, showing to the people that Mao´s was actually reliable and fulfilling with his promises, mainly the fulfilment of the 3 Principles of People (to make China a free, prosperous and powerful nation), which were originally set by the first GMD leader Sun Yat Sen, whom was also quite hated for his rulership misconduct, with the people stating he “died in bitterness”. This fulfilment of the oppositions goal had boasted the image of Mao and had granted Mao the privilege of being a beacon of truth. With his promises becoming true rather strictly ideas. Historian Chang and holiday had stated that “Mao had learnt…that the most effective way of conquering the people was to conquer their hearts and minds”.

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Another strategy Mao had employed was his use of his self-created ideology Maoism, which was the of the importance of the peasantry, small-scale industry, and agricultural collectivization. The idea within itself was revolutionary and transformed the life of those that dwelled in the countryside. Mao had stated that 'taking the ideas of the masses and concentrate them, then go to the masses persevere in the ideas and carry them through”. This was exemplified in practice as rural markets were transformed into places that had structural beacons in which economic and social exchange could take place. This allowed farmers to gain a greater freedom over their stock and allowed them a way out of their bleak cycle of poverty. This idea was instated in many villages and was run by a member of communists that made sure to aid the lives of the peasantry. This approach also provided Mao insight throughout the countryside which was very impressive as no other authority had been able to properly police its dealings. Mao had stated: “We communists are like seeds and the people are the soil. Wherever we go, we must unite with the people, take root and blossom among them”. This belief was seen with the addition of an economic process where the rural producers were provided with guaranteed markets for their stock. The use of Mao ideologies had led to the elevation of the largest majority of the population, with peasantry sitting at 90% ,these policies became widely popular and were crucial in the peoples want for Mao and the CCP to become the governing bodies of the nation.

In addition another key factor in the CCP win was Mao overall quick wit seen with his smart use of propaganda during key circumstances. This was notably seen in the way the CCP handled the Japanese war as tensions continued to build between China and Japan, the Chinese had finally decided to engage within war. Chiang submitted a statement commencing war with the Japanese on July 19, 1937, this was later followed by the Communist Manifesto, which stated their complete and utter compliance with the United Front, Mao is even quoted stating. These statements were meant to bring both parties together in hopes of fighting the bigger evil, Chiang was even documented stating in his diary that: “This misfortune might even turn out to be a blessing in disguise, if it gets the country united”. However by 1939, both parties had violated the agreements of the United Front with their use of international alliances, tarnishing their agreements and making themselves more vulnerable to the Japanese. According to historian Chang and holiday this was later fixed as “the Communists' attitude was that the nationalists, not the Japanese, were their chief enemy”. Historian chang and holiday aso revealed that the “CCP originally spurned the idea of a United front against Japan, saying it was 'ridiculous in the extreme”'. But since then, history has been completely rewritten, and the world has come to believe that the CCP was more patriotic and keener to fight Japan than the Nationalists were. This alteration of the narrative was a key example of Mao clever use of propaganda in bettering the CPC public image. This idea is further supported by historian Di Mdonald whom stated “Communists gave only lip service to the United Front”. None the less It was very successful as this decision in conjunction with the communist manifesto was very strategic and had resulted in the people viewing Mao as a wise being whom puts the needs of china before his personal narrative. This move acted like propaganda raising up the credentials of the CPC in moments were the Chinese people were loosing faith in the Nationalist government and were looking for a system of government that would put China back into order. This propaganda was just one of the multiple occurrences done by Mao, with the earliest example being the Long March in 1934, where the CPC marched 6,000 miles, due to being kicked out by the GMD. This quick witted thinking by Mao to make a public and theatrical move when apprehended by the GMD, had not only reinforced self-esteem in the members of the Communist party but ultimately gain prestige in the eyes of the poor- whom were the majority of the nation. Historian Chang and holiday stated mao actions allowed the chinese population to see him as “the prophet who had led the survivors through the valley of the shadow of death”. Mao strategical thinking kept the communist in the good graces of the Chinese people and ultimately aided within the winning of the revolution.

Mao clever leadership and strategical insight that had heavily aided within the winning of the war was seen from the very foundation Mao had placed within the communist. Mao had built the Communist Party with the belief that their greatest goal was the concept of ‘serving the people’ and the leadership style of ‘from the masses to the masses’, believing that the ideas and wants of the people are the central thought of the party. stating from the start that they did not hop to gain political gratification for themselves but the gratification of a revolution for all. His conduct of the party had led historian Peng Dehuai to label Mao as 'A wise leader with political foresight, who foresees developments and is good at dealing with them'. Mao had gone against the path set by prior governors and believed that the importance of economic laws, the expense of politics and ideology, were all topics that should be readily thought about within leadership and made clear towards the population instead of being hidden and considered taboo from citizens old stressing the role of consciousness in promoting change. Mao overall emphasis on the importance of the need for a culture which beyond the typical work culture that was used by prior governors to work the masses for individual gain but instead reflect aspirations had been the primary foundation that allowed CCP to gain the upper hand within the revoloution.

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Mao Zedong’s Impact on the Chinese Revolution of 1949. (2022, September 01). Edubirdie. Retrieved February 26, 2024, from
“Mao Zedong’s Impact on the Chinese Revolution of 1949.” Edubirdie, 01 Sept. 2022,
Mao Zedong’s Impact on the Chinese Revolution of 1949. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 26 Feb. 2024].
Mao Zedong’s Impact on the Chinese Revolution of 1949 [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2022 Sept 01 [cited 2024 Feb 26]. Available from:
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