A city devoted to Maoism - a place where Stalin is revered as a hero of the people

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tags: Communism, China, Stalin, Mao



A street busy with hawker stalls, littered with plastic bags and dropped kebabs has motorcycle rickshaws rattling up and down. Someone on an e-bike zips through the slight space between my partner and I with a too-late buzz of the horn. This is the town of Linying. So far, so China.

But, then, everything changes. We go through Chaoyang Gate, a traditional portal of brick and brightly painted wood, into a vast concrete square that is spotlessly clean. Not a hawker in sight. From there, a tree-lined boulevard leads to a 9m-high white marble Mao, guarded on either side by women in military uniform.

There are a lot of red flags, portraits of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin. Loudspeakers blare propaganda and an enormous rainbow arch is a final reminder that socialist paradise is the theme here. We've entered Nanjiecun, China's last communist collective.

Nanjiecun collectivised just as the rest of the country was dismantling the collective farms and villages of Mao Zedong's era and moving toward capitalism.




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