Great Chinese Famine

From Simple English Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The public dining hall (canteen) of a people's commune. The slogan on the wall reads "Eat Free, Work Hard".

Great Chinese Famine was a great famine in China from 1958 to 1961. Drought, poor weather and some of the policies of the Communist Party of China were among the reasons of the three years of famine. This also further resulted in the Great Leap Forward movement.

History[change | change source]

According to the government's statistics the total death toll is 15 million people. Historian Frank Dikotter, having been granted special access to Chinese archival materials, estimates that there were at least 45 million premature deaths from 1958 to 1962, although far from all these deaths came about as a result of starvation.[1][2]

Chinese journalist Yang Jisheng concluded there were 36 million deaths due to starvation, while another 40 million others failed to be born, so that "China's total population loss during the Great Famine then comes to 76 million.

The Great Chinese Famine was caused by a combination of adverse weather conditions, social pressure, economic mismanagement, and radical changes in agriculture imposed by government regulations.[3]

Mao Zedong, chairman of the Chinese communist party, introduced drastic changes in farming which prohibited farm ownership. Failure to abide by the policies led to persecution.[4] The social pressure imposed on the citizens in terms of farming and business, which the government controlled, led to state instability. Owing to the laws passed during the period and Great Leap Forward during 1958–1962, according to government statistics, about 36 million people died in this period.

References[change | change source]

  1. Akbar, Arifa (17 September 2010). "Mao's Great Leap Forward 'killed 45 million in four years'". The Independent. London. Retrieved 20 September 2010.
  2. Dikötter, Frank. Mao's Great Famine: The History of China's Most Devastating Catastrophe, 1958-62. Walker & Company, 2010. p. 333. ISBN 0-8027-7768-6
  3. "Different Life of Scientist Yuan Longping" (in Chinese). Guangming Daily. 22 May 2007. Archived from the original on 16 November 2018. Retrieved 16 March 2012.
  4. Jisheng, Yang "Tombstone: The Great Chinese Famine, 1958–1962". Book Review. New York Times. Dec, 2012. March 3, 2013.