Factional-Ideological Conflicts in Chinese Politics
Factional-Ideological Conflicts in Chinese Politics
To the Left or to the Right?
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15.6 x 23.4 cm
Asian Studies
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Table of Contents
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Chapter 1 Introduction
Chapter 2 Learning from Dazhai after the Great Leap Forward: Mutations of Socialism under Mao Zedong Thought, 1964–1978
Chapter 3 Decollectivizing Anhui: The Emergence of Market-oriented Socialism in the Countryside, 1979–1980
Chapter 4 Recollectivizing Nanjie: Building a ‘Small Zone of Communism’ in the Post-Mao Era of Market Reform, 1984–2012
Chapter 5 Shekou and Shenzhen: Blurring the Line between Special Economic Zone and Special Political Zone, 1979–1989
Chapter 6 Guangdong versus Chongqing: Competing Models of Governance in the Run-up to the 18th Party Congress, 2008–2012
Chapter 7 China under Xi Jinping: The End of Factional Model-making and the Pursuit of Common Prosperity in Zhejiang since 2021
Chapter 8 Conclusion

Reviews and Features

''An excellent piece of work that analyses elite-level discussion and conflict in the Communist Party of China over several decades, from Mao to present-day. This book is a particularly valuable asset to the scholarship thanks to its outstanding analytical rigor, nuance and dispassionate clarity''.
Prof David S G Goodman, Director, China Studies Centre, University of Sydney

''Olivia Cheung has researched and analysed the internal workings of the Chinese party and government elite deeply. This invaluable comparative study shows parallels, and differences, over the last few decades in China, and, with detailed examples both from documents and field research, helps shed much needed light in one of the most important but little understood decision making processes of the modern world''.
Prof Kerry Brown, Director, Lau China Institute, King’s College London

''This incisive and insightful book offers a rare and novel window into the world of political jockeying taking place at the elite levels of the Chinese Communist Party, and how particular ideological debates have ended up shaping the course of China’s market reforms''.
Prof. Patricia Thornton, Associate Professor of Chinese Politics, University of Oxford.

''An incisive and absorbing overview of faction-making (and breaking) in the PRC, and one that is most timely given Xi Jinping’s quest to end elite CCP factionalism. The book is accessible both to those just beginning their journey into Chinese politics and those who are already drenched in the history and politics of this fascinating country''.
Dr Robert Weatherley, Affiliated Lecturer in Chinese Politics, University of Cambridge

Olivia Cheung

Factional-Ideological Conflicts in Chinese Politics

To the Left or to the Right?

This book reconstructs the factional-ideological conflicts surrounding socialist transformation and political reform in China that were played out through ‘factional model-making’, a norm-bound mechanism for elites of the Chinese Communist Party to contest the party line publicly. Dazhai, Anhui, Nanjie, Shekou, Shenzhen, Guangdong and Chongqing were cultivated into factional models by party elites before Xi Jinping came to power in 2012. Although factional model-making undermined party discipline, it often did not threaten regime security and even contributed to regime resilience through strengthening collective leadership and other means. This follows that the suppression of factional model-making under Xi might undermine longer-term regime resilience. However, Xi believes that regime security rests on his strongman rule, not any benefits that factional model-making may contribute. It is in this spirit that he grooms Zhejiang into a party model for his policy programme of common prosperity, which is designed to legitimize his vision of socialism.

Olivia Cheung

Dr Olivia Cheung is Research Fellow of the China Institute at SOAS University of London. She obtained her DPhil from the University of Oxford where she was a Swire Scholar and a Rhodes Scholar. She previously taught at the University of Warwick, where she was Course Director for the MA in International Politics and East Asia. She is the co-author of The Political Thought of Xi Jinping (2024).