TYPE: Poster
DIMENSIONS: Varying sizes, the largest 41.5" x 30"
COMPONENTS: The five posters bear some small tears at the edges, else very good.
NOTES: From a single collection obtained entirely in China pre-2000.
ITEM ID: 4435
  • Artwork
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Chinese Communist Propaganda Poster

DATE
Century: 20th (1901-2000)

A Chinese propaganda poster intended to romanticize the effects of the Great Leap Forward and the Cultural Revolution. The Revolution in fact resulted in millions of deaths through famine, forced labor and executions.

According to scholar Jeffrey Kinkley, “This is a uniquely timed document! Nice. Celebrates the 35th anniversary of Mao’s Yan’an talks. That would be May 1977. Mao is dead (1976), but Deng Xiaoping is not yet in power. That is usually dated Nov.-Dec. 1978. ‘Let literature and the arts serve the workers, peasants, and soldiers.’ The poster literally commemorates the ‘publication’ of the Yan’an Talks on Literature and Art, so it could be slight bit later, but still before Deng Xiaoping took the reins. From Bonnie S. McDougall, the authority on those awful “Talks”: ‘Mao spoke in Yan’an on 2 May and 23 May 1942, but despite subsequent conventional reference to the ‘publication’ of his speeches that year, they were not actually published until 19 October 1943 in commemoration of the seventh anniversary of the death of Lu Xun.’ “