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Author Gao, Yuan, 1952-

Title Born red : a chronicle of the Cultural Revolution / Gao Yuan
Published Stanford, Calif. : Stanford University Press, 1987


Location Call no. Vol. Availability
 W'PONDS  951.056 Gao/Bra  AVAILABLE
 MELB  951.056 Gao/Bra  AVAILABLE
Description xxxii, 380 pages : 1 portrait ; 23 cm
Contents Hold of history -- Learning to be red and expert -- Thirty-six stratagems -- Hidden messages -- Ox ghosts and snake spirits -- Winds and waves -- Degenerate and the worn shoe -- The red, the black, and the in-between -- Smashing the four olds -- Cleaning our own nest -- Picking up the pieces -- Rebels and royalists -- Going to see the great helmsman -- Sending off the monsters -- Defending the mountain devil -- Carpenter spy -- Reply from a socialist-roader -- On the road -- Rocks down the well -- Long march, by hook or crook -- Spring festival visitors -- Capless official -- Smears and skirmishes -- Spring buds -- Arrival of the cadets -- Grand alliance -- Uncommon laughter -- Victory fish -- First martyr -- Summons by subterfuge -- Storming the enemy stronghold -- Spies in the marketplace -- Family skeletons -- Playing with fire -- Obstinacy of truth -- On the run -- From victors to vanquished -- Living in limbo -- Class brothers take revenge -- Radiance of the setting sun -- Three loyalties and four boundless loves -- Hostage for a hobby -- Twelve-force typhoon -- Irretrievable past -- The way out
Summary Born Red is an artistically wrought personal account, written very much from inside the experience, of the years 1966-1969, when the author was a young teenager at middle school. It was in the middle schools that much of the fury of the Cultural Revolution and Red Guard movement was spent, and Gao was caught up in very dramatic events, which he recounts as he understood them at the time. Gao's father was a county political official who was in and out of trouble during those years, and the intense interplay between father and son and the differing perceptions and impact of the Cultural Revolution for the two generations provide both an unusual perspective and some extraordinary moving moments. He also makes deft use of traditional mythology and proverbial wisdom to link, sometimes ironically, past and present. Gao relates in vivid fashion how students-turned-Red Guards held mass rallies against 'capitalist roader' teachers and administrators, marching them through the streets to the accompaniment of chants and jeers and driving some of them to suicide. Eventually the students divided into two factions, and school and town became armed camps. Gao tells of the exhilaration that he and his comrades experienced at their initial victories, of their deepening disillusionment as they utter defeat as the tumultuous first phase of the Cultural Revolution came to a close. The portraits of the persons to whom Gao introduces us - classmates, teachers, family members - gain weight and density as the story unfolds, so that in the end we see how they all became victims of the dynamics of a mass movement out of control
Issuing Body Foreword by William A. Joseph
Subject Gao, Yuan, 1952-
Kao, Yuan, 1952-
China -- History -- Cultural Revolution, 1966-1976 -- Personal narratives.
China -- History -- Cultural Revolution, 1966-1976.
Genre/Form Autobiographies.
LC no. 86023058
ISBN 0804713685 (alk. paper)
0804713693 (paperback)