Red God: Wei Baqun and His Peasant Revolution in Southern China, 1894-1932
Han, Xiaorong. Red god : Wei Baqun and his peasant revolution in southern China, 1894-1932. Albany : State University of New York Press, 2014. XII-346 p. (Coll. “Suny series in Chinese philosophy and culture”). ISBN : 978-1-438-45383-5.
Robin Hood–style revolutionary Wei Baqun is often described as one of China’s “three great peasant leaders,” alongside Mao Zedong and Peng Pai. In his home county of Donglan, where he started organizing peasants in the early 1920s, Wei Baqun came to be considered a demigod after his death—a communist revolutionary with supernatural powers. So much legend has grown up around this fascinating figure that it is difficult to know the truth from the tale. Presenting Wei Baqun’s life in light of interactions between his local community and the Chinese nation, Red God is organized around the journeys he made from his multiethnic frontier county to major cities where he picked up ideas, methods, and contacts, and around the three revolts he launched back home. Xiaorong Han explores the congruencies and conflicts of local, regional, and national forces at play during Wei Baqun’s lifetime while examining his role as a link between his Zhuang people and the Han majority, between the village and the city, and between the periphery and the center.