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China's Century

In: Social Issues

Submitted By marshmallowmare
Words 947
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When I ask my grandparents about their life. They told me of their childhood in Nationalist China, their difficult teenage years during the Japanese occupation and War Lords era, and their adult life in Communist China. They lived through roughly 4 governments (depending on the source), 3 decades of civil war, 8 years of Japanese occupation, 30 years of Communist China and 30+ years of modern Communist China. You would think that my grandparents should be in their 120’s. Well no. Their almost 80 and their lives mirror the ups and downs China has experienced in the 20th century. Yet time after time either because of wise government decisions or the determination of its people, China manages to recuperate. Imperial China lasted for roughly 2000 years, its decline beginning in the 1800’s with the rebellions and the Opium Wars. And since then it has been civil war, foreign attacks, rebellions, fall of the Qing dynasty, foreign occupation, and more civil war. It wasn’t until the mid 1900’s with the victory of the Communists that China has finally rid itself of the physical fighting. However diplomatic wars between nations and the fights with natural disasters still dragged on. My father recalled from his youth a time when even though no one he knew starved to death, everyone was hungry. The crops had failed again that year due to the “4 pests” rats, flies, mosquitoes, and fleas, child and adult alike were told to kill them on sight. The shortages of food lasted for 3 years from 1959 to 1961. No one, not the western nations, not even the Chinese themselves could predict what I am about to say next. After a century of havoc and disrupted production, China manages to stand back up and shock the world with her unbelievably fast recovery and economic growth. In 1978, the government of China took up a major program of economic reform. In an effort to kick start its…...

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