Revolution and Counterrevolution in China

Revolution and Counterrevolution in China:The Paradoxes of Chinese Struggle

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A major new contribution to the study of China's revolutions and counterrevolutions over the past century.

Over recent decades China has experienced massive change and development. China is the world’s fastest growing economy, and has become a global superpower once again. But this development has thrown up a number of seemingly intractable contradictions, both political and economic. In this panoramic study of Chinese history in the twentieth century and its place in the development of global capitalism, Lin Chun argues that the paradoxes of contemporary Chinese society are not simply the product of the development of capitalism or modernity in the country. They are instead the product of the contradictions of its long revolutionary history, as well as the social and political consequences of its post-socialist transition.

Published to coincide with the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Chinese Communist Party, Revolution and Counterrevolution in China charts China’s epic revolutionary trajectory in search of a socialist alternative to the global system, and asks whether market reform must repudiate and overturn the revolution and its legacy.


  • This brilliant book makes a great contribution to the historical research, theoretical exploration, and political debates surrounding China. Lin Chun locates her reflections in a broad historical context, which ranges from classical questions posed by Adam Smith, Max Weber, and Karl Marx to the diverse new trends of historical interpretation. Her succinct and incisive analysis offers a much-needed perspective.

    Wang Hui, author of The End of the Revolution (Praise for China and Global Capitalism)
  • While most people have already cast China as a capitalist country with a communist government, Lin Chun shows that there may be life in Chinese socialism yet. Combining erudition, passion, and an engaging writing style, Lin challenges a lot of conventional wisdom about China. This book should be on the shelf of everyone who has any interest in the course of the Chinese economy and society.

    Meghnad Desai (Praise for The Transformation of Chinese Socialism)
  • Even in the increasingly crowded field of scholars analyzing how the CCP intends to govern China, Lin’s voice is worth paying attention to, not just for her insight into many of the events that she describes, but also as a window into the thinking of a contemporary and critic of the generation currently in power in China.

    Xiaochen SuThe News Lens