- Published: November 22, 2021
- Updated: November 22, 2021
- Language: English
- Downloads: 3
During Mao’s rule he was opposed to a great extent. This opposition was often by those with a higher level education or a religious background. Some of the groups that opposed Mao were the following: Religious Groups, Professors and Doctors, and even some peasants/people in the proletariat class. The opposition of peasants was rare at first, but as time went on in China and conditions got rougher, peasants and the proletariat began to oppose Mao and his rule. Some of the ways that Mao dealt with this opposition were the hundred flowers campaign, speak bitterness meetings and the use of prison camps. This allowed Mao to regain control over the people and force them into submission.
Religious leaders/churches in China were opposed to Mao because of his strict rulings. He only allowed one religion/ideology in China…Maoism. Mao eliminated this opposition by attacking the church publicly. This was done through the act of stripping a priest or nun who was wearing their ritualistic clothing. Acts such as this were promoted in China at this time. Another example of an act such as this would be the destruction of churches simply because they did not wish to submit to Mao. Some other ways that Mao eliminated this opposition was to allow those churches who wanted to stay open to stay open as long as they preached as Mao wanted them to. This was a motivation for many of the churches of that time, so many of them submitted to Mao.
Professors, Doctors, Peasants, and people of all classes publicly opposed Mao during the Hundred flowers campaign. Mao used the Hundred Flowers campaign to see who/what groups opposed him. In doing this, Mao decided, after a short period of time that it was not helpful to have people airing their grievances against him. So, Mao shut down the hundred flowers campaign and arrested some of those who had previously not spoken in favor of his rule. When someone spoke ill towards Mao, because of the publicity of this campaign, people knew. This led to judgement in the community and a segregation between those who were for Mao’s ideology and those who were against it.
Much like the Hundred Flowers Campaign, Mao was opposed, to a smaller extent, during the speak bitterness meetings, as were landlords and other high officials, such as bosses of a corporation. Most of the speak bitterness meetings were against landlords, bosses and officials, but once in a while Mao’s name and policies would be brought up and those who had mentioned that they had a problem with him would be punished for publicly opposing the regime.
Prison Camps in China were used as not only a tool for correcting those who did not side with Mao, but as a tool for scaring the people into submission. When a man was arrested and sent to a prison camp, if he returned home he would not be allowed to work, his children may not be able to go to school and his wife may also be unable to get a job. This was a punishment not only for the time the person was attending the prison camp but for the time the person was home and also affected the family, even if they had not committed any crime or spoken ill towards Mao. Neighbors would turn on each other at the drop of a dime just so that they would not be accused themselves. Gossip ran rampant and was Mao’s main source of intel. This was dangerous as it was unreliable, however it was the most prevalent way that Mao found out who opposed him during the time.
One opposite view, which is Mao’s own, is that opposition wasn’t so prevalent. One example of this can be shown where if a person went to the speak bitterness meetings and spoke ill about their landlord, but not on Mao and his rule, they were able to take the land. This, at first, satisfied many of the peasants who had no land. Sometimes, this led to the landlord being killed by angry peasants. However, we can see that opposition was very prevalent. Mao created many enemies and even had rough relations with Joseph Stalin, when dealing with the Soviet Union. Mao thought that the people in China were happy with his rule and yet we can see that this is not at all the case.
Opposition was very prevalent in Mao’s China. However, Mao dealt with it by showing little mercy. Through the Hundred Flowers Campaign, Speak Bitterness meetings, and Prison Camps, Mao was able to eliminate this opposition. Not only the Peasants and the Proletariat were now at the mercy of Mao, but also the Religious groups in China at the time. Even Churches had to submit to Mao. Without Submission the doors of the churches would be closed and they would be destroyed, but those who did submit were able to keep the church open and preach as long as it was what Mao wanted preached. Overall, opposition in china was obliterated through Mao’s lack of Justice and Mercy for those who were simply stating what they believed.