78 episodes

In this podcast, Matthew Rothwell, author of Transpacific Revolutionaries: The Chinese Revolution in Latin America, explores the global history of ideas related to rebellion and revolution. The main focus of this podcast for the near future will be on the history of the Chinese Revolution, going all the way back to its roots in the initial Chinese reactions to British imperialism during the Opium War of 1839-1842, and then following the development of the revolution and many of the ideas that were products of the revolution through to their transnational diffusion in the late 20th century.

People's History of Ideas Podcast Matthew Rothwell

    • History
    • 5.0 • 53 Ratings

In this podcast, Matthew Rothwell, author of Transpacific Revolutionaries: The Chinese Revolution in Latin America, explores the global history of ideas related to rebellion and revolution. The main focus of this podcast for the near future will be on the history of the Chinese Revolution, going all the way back to its roots in the initial Chinese reactions to British imperialism during the Opium War of 1839-1842, and then following the development of the revolution and many of the ideas that were products of the revolution through to their transnational diffusion in the late 20th century.

    From Gym Teacher to General: Zhu De in Revolution and Rebellion (1907-1916)

    From Gym Teacher to General: Zhu De in Revolution and Rebellion (1907-1916)

    Following Zhu De from his time as a teacher of physical training at a modern school, through his time at the Yunnan Military Academy, the Revolution of 1911 and the rebellion against Yuan Shikai.

    Further reading:
    Agnes Smedley, The Great Road: The Life and Times of Chu Teh [Zhu De]

    Some names from this episode:
    Cai E, Republican general and governor of Yunnan after the 1911-12 revolution
    Yuan Shikai, leader of the Beiyang Army and dictator after the fall of the Qing
    Xiao Jufang, Zhu De’s first wife
    Lu Shaozhen, reactionary chief of staff of Yunnan Army’s First Division
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    • 20 min
    From Poor Peasant to Gym Teacher: The Early Life of Zhu De

    From Poor Peasant to Gym Teacher: The Early Life of Zhu De

    Taking a look back at the early life of Zhu De, the man who would later be Mao’s main partner in revolution.

    Further reading:
    Agnes Smedley, The Great Road: The Life and Times of Chu Teh [Zhu De]

    Some names from this episode:
    Zhang Tailei, leader of the Guangzhou Uprising of December 1927
    Wang Zuo, Bandit leader who joined with Mao Zedong
    Shi Dakai, Taiping general who fought a campaign in Sichuan
    Emperor Guangxu, Emperor of China who tried to assert his power during Hundred Days Reform only to be thwarted by the Empress Dowager Cixi
    Xi Bingan, Zhu De’s teacher
    Empress Dowager Cixi, power behind the throne from 1861 to 1908
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    • 27 min
    Engels on Insurrection

    Engels on Insurrection

    The story behind how guidance on communist armed struggle got into a major American newspaper in 1852. Listener requested background on the text used by Lenin and which was so influential in the Guangzhou Commune.

    Further reading:
    Frederick Engels, Revolution and Counter-Revolution in Germany
    Lenin, “Advice of an Onlooker”

    Some names from this episode:
    Zhang Tailei, leader of the Guangzhou Uprising of December 1927
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    • 24 min
    The Guangzhou Commune (December 11-13, 1927)

    The Guangzhou Commune (December 11-13, 1927)

    The last major armed uprising of 1927, in which the Communists temporarily took over Guangzhou.

    Further reading:
    Arif Dirlik, “Narrativizing Revolution: The Guangzhou Uprising (11-13 December 1927) in Workers’ Perspective”
    Marcia Ristaino, China’s Art of Revolution: The Mobilization of Discontent, 1927 and 1928
    Hsiao Tso-Liang, “Chinese Communism and the Canton Soviet of 1927”
    Lenin, “Advice of an Onlooker”

    Some names from this episode:
    Zhang Tailei, secretary of the Guangdong Provincial Committee of the Communist Party
    Ye Ting, Communist military leader
    He Long, Communist military leader
    Heinz Neumann, German Comintern agent
    Zhang Fakui, Guomindang militarist who seized Guangzhou on November 17, 1927
    Xu Xiangqian, Communist military officer, played leading role in Guangzhou Uprising
    Deng Zhongxia, Communist labor leader
    Huang Ping, One of the organizers of the Guangzhou uprising
    Qu Qiubai, top leader of Communist Party beginning in the summer of 1927
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    • 21 min
    Red Canton: Background to the Guangzhou Uprising of December 1927

    Red Canton: Background to the Guangzhou Uprising of December 1927

    Some background on the situation in Guangzhou leading up to the uprising.

    Further reading:
    Arif Dirlik, “Narrativizing Revolution: The Guangzhou Uprising (11-13 December 1927) in Workers’ Perspective”
    Marcia Ristaino, China’s Art of Revolution: The Mobilization of Discontent, 1927 and 1928
    Hsiao Tso-Liang, “Chinese Communism and the Canton Soviet of 1927”
    Manuel Gomez, “Organize for Liberation of the Colonies: Canton Center of World Movement”

    Some names from this episode:
    Wang Jingwei, leader of the Guomindang Left
    Li Jishen, Guomindang militarist allied with Wang Jingwei
    Zhang Fakui, Guomindang militarist who launched a coup in Guangzhou in November 1927
    Zhang Tailei, secretary of the Guangdong Provincial Committee of the Communist Party
    Liu Ersong, the chairman of the Workers’ Delegates Conference
    Peng Pai, Communist peasant leader
    Zhou Enlai, leading Communist
    Li Chai-sum, Guomindang general
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    • 21 min
    ‘Blind Actionism’ in Action: Understanding the Hundreds of Small Revolts Led by Communists at the End of the 1920s in China

    ‘Blind Actionism’ in Action: Understanding the Hundreds of Small Revolts Led by Communists at the End of the 1920s in China

    Using the early November 1927 peasant revolt in Jiangsu province to illustrate features common to the many small Communist-led uprisings at the end of the 1920s.

    Further reading:
    Marcia Ristaino, China’s Art of Revolution: The Mobilization of Discontent, 1927 and 1928
    Chang Liu, “Making Revolution in Jiangnan: Communists and the Yangzi Delta Countryside, 1927-1945”

    Some names from this episode:
    Qu Qiubai, top leader of Communist Party beginning in the summer of 1927
    Zhu De, Communist military commander
    Zhou Enlai, leading Communist
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    • 23 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
53 Ratings

53 Ratings

Bshsiifkfnds ,

Fantastic insight into revolutionary China

A great podcast in the style of Revolutions and Age of Napoleon providing an in depth view into Chinas communist revolution

cccp526 ,

Clear and engaging story telling

As an avid listener to Mike Duncan’s Revolutions and someone who grew up in Taiwan, I am familiar with many of the names of the Chinese revolution. This podcast provides detailed and balanced story telling of how the Chinese revolution started and evolved. The length of each episode is just right. The language is concise.

lizzwrath ,

If you like revolutions you’ll probably enjoy this

This podcast takes a granular and even analysis of the history of Chinese revolutionary ideals and events and their impact on the rest of the world and does it almost flawlessly. My suggestion to people who might find,( as I myself did)the readers voice somewhat slow is to simply put it on 1.25 speed, if you’re less familiar with the events you may need to listen to certain sections again but overall it does improve the listening experience and makes the fantastic writing and research more accessible for zoomers with poor attention spans like myself.

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