Mao Zedong (or Mao Tse-tung in Wade-Giles; Simplified Chinese: 毛泽东; Traditional Chinese: 毛澤東; December 26, 1893 – September 9, 1976) was the Chairman of the Communist Party of China from 1943 until his death. He was also a founder of the People's Republic of China.
- The "Cabinet meeting" of the Chinese government is really quick in yielding. Even the fart of foreigners can be taken as "fragrance." The Cabinet meeting lifts the cotton export ban because foreigners want cotton; it orders "all provinces to stop collecting the cigarette tax" because foreigners want to import cigarettes. Let the 400 million compatriots again think it over: Isn't it correct to say that the Chinese government is the bookkeeper of foreigners?
- "Cigarette Tax," Hsiang-Tao Chou-Pao, no. 38, August 29, 1923, in Collected Works of Mao Tse-Tung (1917-1949), vol. 1 (United States Joint Publications Research Service, 1978), 48.
- The country is so beautiful, where so many heroes had devoted their lives into it. Sorry that the Qin Emperor or the Han Wu Emperor lacks a sense for literacy; while the founders of the Tang and Song dynasties came short in style. The great man, Genghis Khan, only knew how to shoot eagles with an arrow. The past is past. To see real heroes, look around you.
- Qinyuanchun - Snow (沁园春•雪) (1936)
- What we need is an enthusiastic but calm state of mind, and intense but orderly work.
- "Problems of Strategy in China's Revolutionary War", (December 1936), Selected Works, Vol. I, p. 211.
- I knew the Classics, but disliked them. What I enjoyed were the romances of Old China, and especially stories of rebellions. I read the Yo Fei Chuan, Shui Hu Chuan, Fan T'ang, San Kuo, and Hsi Yu Chi, while still very young, and despite the vigilance of my old teacher, who hated these outlawed books and called them wicked. I used to read them in school, covering them up with a Classic when the teacher walked past. So also did most of my schoolmates. We learned many of the stories almost by heart, and discussed and re-discussed them many times. We knew more of them than the old men of the village, who also loved them and used to exchange stories with us. I believe that perhaps I was much influenced by such books, read at an impressionable age.
- In Edgar Snow's Red Star Over China (1937)
- Many people think it impossible for guerrillas to exist for long in the enemy's rear. Such a belief reveals lack of comprehension of the relationship that should exist between the people and the troops. The former may be likened to water the latter to the fish who inhabit it. How may it be said that these two cannot exist together?
- On Guerilla Warfare (1937), Chapter 6 - "The Political Problems of Guerilla Warfare"
- This is usually aphorized as "The people are the sea that the revolutionary swims in," or an equivalent.
- Politics is war without bloodshed, while war is politics with bloodshed.
- On Protracted War, May 1938, from 'Mao's Selected Works, Vol. II', Section 64 pg. 153
- Marxism comprises many principles, but in the final analysis they can all be brought back to a single sentence: it is right to rebel.
- Speech marking the 60th birthday of Stalin (20 December 1939), later revised as "It is right to rebel against reactionaries."
- "You are dictatorial." My dear sirs, you are right, that is just what we are. All the experience the Chinese people have accumulated through several decades teaches us to enforce the people's democratic dictatorship, that is, to deprive the reactionaries of the right to speak and let the people alone have that right.
- The People's Democratic Dictatorship, speech (30 June 1949) commemorating the 28th anniversary of the Chinese Communist Party
- Stalin made mistakes. He made mistakes towards us, for example, in 1927. He made mistakes towards the Yugoslavs too. One cannot advance without mistakes... It is necessary to make mistakes. The party cannot be educated without learning from mistakes. This has great significance.
- There are a lot of things we can learn from the Soviet Union. Naturally, we should learn from its advanced and not its backward experience. The slogan we have advocated all along is to draw on the advanced Soviet experience. Who told you to pick up its backward experience? Some people are so undiscriminating that they say a Russian fart is fragrant. That too is subjectivism. The Russians themselves say it stinks. Therefore, we should be analytical.
- Strengthen Party Unity and Carry Forward Party Traditions, (30 August 1956)
- 百花齐放，百家争鸣 (Simplified Chinese), 百花齊放，百家爭鳴 (Traditional Chinese), bǎihuāqífàng, bǎijiāzhēngmíng (Pinyin)
- "Let a hundred flowers bloom; let a hundred schools of thought contend" is the policy for promoting progress in the arts and the sciences and a flourishing socialist culture in our land.
- Slogan used at the start of the Hundred Flowers Campaign of open criticism of the communist government that began in late 1956 and ended in July 1957.
- Ours is a people's democratic dictatorship, led by the working class and based on the worker-peasant alliance.
- On the Correct Handling of Contradiction (1957)
- Criticisms from democratic personages can be of only two kinds, those that are wrong and those that are not. Criticisms that are not wrong can help remedy our shortcomings while wrong ones must be refuted. As for such types as Liang Shu-ming, Peng Yi-hu and Chang Nai-chi, if they want to fart, let them. That will be to our advantage, for everybody can judge whether the smell is good or foul, and through discussion the majority can be won over and these types isolated.
- Strategically we should despise all our enemies, while tactically we should take them all seriously.
- Speech in Moscow at the meeting of Communist and Workers Parties of Socialist Countries (18 November 1957)
- If we did ten things, nine were bad and got disclosed by the newspapers, we will be over. Then I will go, to the countryside, lead the peasant and revolt. If the Liberation Army do not follow me, I will get the Red Army. (July 23, 1959)
- Speech at the Lushan Conference (23 July 1959)
- The chaos caused was on a grand scale and I take responsibility. Comrades, you must all analyse your own responsibility. If you have to shit, shit! If you have to fart, fart! You will feel much better for it.
- Speech At The Lushan Conference (23 July 1959)
- Maybe you're afraid of sinking. Don't think about it. If you don't think about it, you won't sink. If you do, you will.
- Swimming advice to physician Zhisui Li (1966), quoted in The TIME 100 (13 April 1998)
- (論國民黨) 有很多的頑固分子，他們是頑固專門學校畢業的。他們今天頑固，明天頑固，後天還是頑固。什麼叫頑固？固者硬也，頑者，今天、明天、後天都不進步之謂也。這樣的人，就叫做頑固分子。要使這樣的頑固分子聽我們的話，不是一件容易的事情。
- (Referring to the Kuomintang) There are many stubborn elements, graduates in the speciality schools of stubbornness. They are stubborn today, they will be stubborn tomorrow, and they will be stubborn the day after tomorrow. What is stubbornness (wan gu)? "Gu" is to be stiff. "Wan" is to not progress: not today, nor tomorrow, nor the day after tomorrow. People like that are called the "stubborn elements". It is not an easy thing to make the stubborn elements listen to our words.
- Mao, 1967, as quoted by Jing Huang in The Role of Government Propaganda in the Educational System during the Cultural Revolution in China.
- Racial discrimination in the United States is a product of the colonialist and imperialist system. The contradiction between the Black masses in the United States and the U.S. ruling circles is a class contradiction. Only by overthrowing the reactionary rule of the U.S. monopoly capitalist class and destroying the colonialist and imperialist system can the Black people in the United States win complete emancipation. The Black masses and the masses of white working people in the United States have common interests and common objectives to struggle for. Therefore, the Afro-American struggle is winning sympathy and support from increasing numbers of white working people and progressives in the United States. The struggle of the Black people in the United States is bound to merge with the American workers’ movement, and this will eventually end the criminal rule of the U.S. monopoly capitalist class.
- All the rest of the world uses the word "electricity." They've borrowed the word from English. But we Chinese have our own word for it!
- Quoted in Khrushchev Remembers (1970), p. 474
- People who try to commit suicide — don't attempt to save them! . . . China is such a populous nation, it is not as if we cannot do without a few people.
- As quoted in Mao's Last Revolution (2006) by Roderick MacFarquhar and Michael Schoenhals, ISBN 0674023323
- My closest friend and brother – this world is lucky to have a great personality as Kim Il Sung. This causes my boundless happiness. The fate of the world revolution and the international communist movement are on your shoulders, Comrade Kim Il Sung. I wish you long life and good health.
- As quoted by the Association for the Study of Songun Politics UK
- I am hated by many, especially comrade Pang Dehuai, his hatred is so intense that he wished me dead. My policy with Pang Dehuai is such: You don't touch me, I don't touch you; You touch me, I touch you. Even though we were once like brothers, it doesn't change a thing.
Quotations from Chairman Mao Zedong (The Little Red Book)
- We should support whatever our enemies oppose and oppose whatever our enemies support.
- Chapter 2, originally published in Interview with Three Correspondents from the Central News Agency, the Sao Tang Pao and the Hsin Min Pao (September 16, 1939), Selected Works, Vol. II, p. 272.
- Who are our enemies? Who are our friends? This is a question of the first importance for the revolution.
- Chapter 2, originally published in Analysis of the Classes in Chinese Society (March 1926), Selected Works, Vol. I, p. 1.
- A revolution is not a dinner party, or writing an essay, or painting a picture, or doing embroidery. It cannot be so refined, so leisurely and gentle, so temperate, kind, courteous, restrained and magnanimous. A revolution is an insurrection, an act of violence by which one class overthrows another.
- Chapter 2, originally published in Report on an investigation of the peasant movement in Hunan (March 1927), Selected Works, Vol. I, p. 28.
- . 湖南農民運動考察報告
- Every Communist must grasp the truth: Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun.
- Chapter 5, originally published in Problems of War and Strategy (November 6, 1938), Selected Works, Vol. II, p. 224.
- All reactionaries are paper tigers. In appearance, the reactionaries are terrifying, but in reality they are not so powerful. From a long-term point of view, it is not the reactionaries but the people who are really powerful.
- Chapter 6, originally published in Talk with the American Correspondent Anna Louise Strong (August 1946), Selected Works, Vol. IV, p. 100.
- If the U.S. monopoly capitalist groups persist in pushing their policies of aggression and war, the day is bound to come when they will be hanged by the people of the whole world. The same fate awaits the accomplices of the United States.
- Chapter 6, originally published in Speech at the Supreme State Conference (September 8, 1958).
- The revolutionary war is a war of the masses; it can be waged only by mobilizing the masses and relying on them.
- Chapter 8, originally published in Be Concerned with the Well-Being of the Masses, Pay Attention to Methods of Work (January 27, 1934), Selected Works, Vol. I. p. 147.
- Without a People's army, the people have nothing.
- Chapter 9, originally published in On Coalition Government (April 24, 1945), Selected Works, Vol. III, pp. 296-97.
- Our principle is that the Party commands the gun, and the gun must never be allowed to command the Party.
- Chapter 9, originally published in the Problems of War and Strategy (November 6, 1938), Selected Works, Vol. II, p. 224.
- Recently there has been a falling off in ideological and political work among students and intellectuals, and some unhealthy tendencies have appeared. Some people seem to think that there is no longer any need to concern oneself with politics or with the future of the motherland and the ideals of mankind. It seems as if Marxism was once all the rage but is currently not so much in fashion. To counter these tendencies, we must strengthen our ideological and political work. Both students and intellectuals should study hard. In addition to the study of their specialized subjects, they must make progress both ideologically and politically, which means that they should study Marxism, current events and politics. Not to have a correct political point of view is like having no soul [...] All departments and organizations should shoulder their responsibilities in ideological and political work. This applies to the Communist Party, the Youth League, government departments in charge of this work, and especially to heads of educational institutions and teachers.
- Chapter 12; originally published in "On the Correct Handling of Contradictions Among the People" (27 February 1957), 1st pocket ed., pp. 43-44
- Be resolute, fear no sacrifice and surmount every difficulty to win victory.
- Chapter 19; originally published in The Foolish Old Man Who Removed the Mountains (June 11, 1945), Selected Works, Vol. III, p. 321.
- Liberalism is extremely harmful in a revolutionary collective. It is a corrosive which eats away unity, undermines cohesion, causes apathy and creates dissension. It robs the revolutionary ranks of compact organization and strict discipline, prevents policies from being carried through and alienates the Party organizations from the masses which the Party leads. It is an extremely bad tendency.
- Chapter 24, originally published in "Combat Liberalism" (7 September 1937), Selected Works, Vol. II, pp. 31-32
- [Our purpose is] to ensure that literature and art fit well into the whole revolutionary machine as a component part, that they operate as powerful weapons for uniting and educating the people and for attacking and destroying the enemy, and that they help the people fight the enemy with one heart and one mind.
- Chapter 32, originally published in Talks at the Yenan Forum on Literature and Art (May 1942), Selected Works, Vol. III, p. 84.
- There is great chaos under heaven; the situation is excellent.
- See e.g. Nigel Holden, Snejina Michailova, Susanne Tietze (editors). The Routledge Companion to Cross-Cultural Management. Routledge 2015.
Quotes about Mao Zedong
- [Mao] has played politics with Asian cunning. … [and] has always been a master at concealing his true intention. … I was always on my guard with him.
- Nikita Khrushchev, as quoted in A. Doak Barnett (1977) China and the major powers in East Asia, page 352
- As late as 1947, Mao insisted that his program corresponded to that of Sun. Until December of that year, Mao insisted that his ‘new democracy’ would protect the ‘bourgeoisie’ and ‘their industry and commerce.’ Because of China’s backwardness, he would continue to support capitalist development and ensure that both public and private, capital and labor, interests would benefit from the revolution.
- A. James Gregor, Phoenix: Fascism in Our Time, New Brunswick: NJ, Transaction Publishers, 2001, p. 191, footnote 19
- We spoke at length and We really liked Mao Zedong. A lot. He gave Us a very good impression, as Paul VI did. He is a good and very serious leader, and his people have done well to embrace him.
- Mao Zedong! Amazing man! Imagine him and his followers wandering through China day and night, fighting for their goal. What an effort. He has also written beautiful prose and excellent poems.
- Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden in Damernas Värld 34/1972 answering the question "which man has made the most influence on you?" Translated from Swedish.
- Even Mao's casual remark, "Sweet potato tastes good, I like it," became a slogan seen everywhere in the countryside.
- Shaorong Huang, "Political Slogans as Leverage in Conflict and Conflict Management during China's Cultural Revolution Movement," in Chinese Conflict Management and Resolution, ed. Guo-Ming Chen and Ringo Ma (Greenwood Publishing Group, 2002), 242.
- He [Chairman Mao] appears to me as a father and he himself considered me as a son. [We had] very good relations. The only problem was that on many occasions, when official dinners were held, Chairman Mao always used to bring me to his side. So, then as Chinese tradition, Chairman Mao himself would use his chopsticks to put some food in my plate. So, in a way it was a great honour, but in a way I feel little fear...he coughing too much, a chain smoker, so I might get some germs [laughing].
- On balance Mao did more good than harm.
- WikiMaoist A Mao Zedong Wiki
- CNN profile
- The Mao Zedong Reference Archive at marxists.org
- The Mao Zedong Reference Archive at marx2mao.org
- Mao Zedong on propaganda posters Set of propaganda paintings showing Mao Zedong as the great leader of China.
- Quotations from Chairman Mao Tse-Tung, an online version of Mao's famous "Little Red Book"
|General Secretaries and Chairmen of the Communist Party of China|
|Party Chairmen||Mao Zedong · Hua Guofeng · Hu Yaobang|
|General Secretaries||Chen Duxiu · Xiang Zhongfa · Bo Gu · Zhang Wentian · Hu Yaobang · Zhao Ziyang · Jiang Zemin · Hu Jintao · Xi Jinping|