From Mao to Xi: Understanding Chinese State Capitalism

10:00am Saturday 18 September

About this session

Today China is a growing economic power which has opened its market to globalisation while retaining a high level of state control over the economy. What Marxists like Nigel Harris and Tony Cliff described as state capitalism under Mao, a class divided society where control over industry was concentrated in a one-party state, has now been adapted to globalisation to produce massive levels of growth in this century. While capitalist ideologues in the West argued that market liberalisation would inevitably lead to political democratisation, this has not been the case. Xi Jinping has extended his term as leader, cracked down on political dissidents in both mainland China and Hong Kong and ramped up the repression of minority populations like the Uyghurs of Xinjiang. Alongside these internal developments in China has been a sharp turn in intra-imperialist rivalry, with the US now ramping up militarism in a new cold war with China. This session will explore the development of Chinese state capitalism from the national revolution of 1949 and what socialists should say about China today.

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