Rebecca Karl, an associate professor in the Department of History, offers a concise historical account of Mao Zedong’s life and thought in Mao Zedong and China in the 20th Century World. Karl weaves Mao’s personal experiences, social visions and theory, military strategies, and developmental and foreign policies into a dynamic narrative of the Chinese revolution while also examining his legacy in China from his death in 1976 through the Beijing Olympics in 2008.
Karl chronicles the Chinese leader’s transition from liberal to Communist while also exploring his early critiques of the subjugation of women. Describing Mao’s rise to power, she illustrates the dynamics of Communist organizing in an agrarian society and Mao’s confrontations with Chiang Kaishek and other nationalist conservatives.
Karl’s previous works include Staging the World: Chinese Nationalism at the Turn of the 20th Century and the co-edited volumes Rethinking the 1898 Reform Period: Political and Cultural Change in Modern China and Marxism beyond Marxism.