Examining the Communist Party’s founding narrative as China celebrates the centenary
China was a horrendously impoverished and unequal society in 1921, the official line says, and owes its current prosperity and freedom from foreign rule to the Communist revolution of 1949–but in reality, it had little to do with China’s growth.
The 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, pictured in 2012. The prevailing wisdom is that most people will put up with the dictatorship so long as the party also delivers constantly rising prosperity–but China now has a pseudo-capitalist economy and that makes the regime very vulnerable if there is a bad recession, writes Gwynne Dyer.
Photograph courtesy of Wikimedia Commons