Wretched Rebels : Rural Disturbances on the Eve of the Chinese Revolution

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2010-04-30
  • Publisher: Harvard Univ Pr
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This book, a condensed translation of the prize- winning Jacqueries et reacute;volution dans la Chine du XXe siegrave;cle, focuses on "spontaneous" rural unrest, uninfluenced by revolutionary intellectuals. Yet it raises issues inspired by the perennial concerns of revolutionary leaders, such as peasant "class consciousness" and Chinars"s modernization. The author shows that the predominant forms of protest were directed not against the landowning class but against agents of the state. Foremost among them, resistance to taxation had little to do with class struggle. By contrast, protest by poor agricultural laborers and heavily indebted households was extremely rare. Other forms of social protest were reactions less to social exploitation than to oppression by local powerholders. Peasant resistance to the late Qing "new policy" reforms did indeed impede Chinars"s modernization. Decades later, peasant efforts to evade conscription, while motivated by abuses and inequities, weakened the anti-Japanese resistance. The concluding chapter stresses persistent features of rural protest. It suggests that twentiethshy;century Chinese peasants were less different from seventeenth- or eighteenth-century French peasants than might be imagined and points to continuities between pre- and post-1949 rural protest.

Table of Contents

Boxes, Maps, and Tablesp. vii
Conventionsp. ix
Prefacep. xi
Typology I: Movements Opposed to the Administrationp. 1
Resistance to Tax Collectionp. 1
Special Levies and Mixed Incidentsp. 14
Non-Tax Movements Directed Against the Administrationp. 23
Movements Directed Against the Army and Military Servicep. 30
Typology II: Movements Within Societyp. 36
Social Movementsp. 36
Horizontal Conflictsp. 43
Sects and Secret Societiesp. 44
Repertoire of Actionp. 52
Nonviolent Actionp. 52
Handing over Farm Toolsp. 56
Violent Actionsp. 57
Peasant "Excesses"p. 63
Exploitation or Oppression?p. 69
Social Questions Without Social Movementsp. 69
From Exploitation to Oppressionp. 78
Taxationp. 90
Against the Increase in the Tax Burdenp. 91
Abuses, Frauds, Smuggling, and Repressionp. 99
Updating the Cadastrep. 110
The Social Component of Antifiscal Resistancep. 117
Reformsp. 130
Resistance to the New Policiesp. 130
Under the Republicp. 143
Conscriptionp. 159
Military Servicep. 160
Mixed Cases: Conscription and Something Elsep. 171
Not So Much Conscription, Just the Armyp. 174
Major Revoltsp. 176
Permanenciesp. 190
In France Long Ago, but Yesterday in Chinap. 190
Today in Chinap. 200
The Various Categories of Rural Disturbancesp. 211
Reference Matter
Notesp. 217
Works Citedp. 241
Indexp. 263
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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