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  • How the “Red Star” Rose (Forthcoming)

How the “Red Star” Rose (Forthcoming)

Edgar Snow and Early Images of Mao Zedong

Ishikawa Yoshihiro/ Translated by Joshua A. Fogel


English , 2021/06 The Chinese University of Hong Kong Press

Tags: History, China Studies, Politics

229 x 152 x 45 mm , 370pp ISBN : 978-988-237-207-8

  • US$70.00


Coming Soon

The fact that Snow did not sneak into “red China” to gather information constituting the basis of his Red Start over China all alone is in many instances misunderstood even by scholars.


Mao Zedong’s biography has been the subject of an international mountain of commentary in China and elsewhere. Biographies praising Mao and those slandering him are all based on the American journalist Edgar Snow’s (1905–1972) account in Red Star over China for the route Mao traveled from early childhood through his youth.

How the “Red Star” Rose introduces the image of Mao and the biographical information made known to the world through the publication of Red Star, and with its publication the circumstances which they fundamentally undermined.

Ishikawa uses Mao Zedong as raw material to examine from whence and how ordinary historical information and images which we habitually use unconsciously come into being. He desires to help readers to reconsider the historicity of the generation of not only Mao’s image but of that of “historical materials.”


“This study is full of unexpected insights into the origins of early visual images of Mao, the background to Snow’s historic trip to northern Shaanxi, and the evolution of the classic study that he left. In a world where balanced judgment of the rise of Mao is increasingly difficult to find, Ishikawa’s scholarship stands out as a rare model of judicious balance.”

—Joseph W. Esherick

Emeritus Professor of History, University of California, San Diego


“Ishikawa captures a moment of a past gearing up in anticipation of a future that never came. This book is a must-read for all with an interest in Mao, journalism, and the history of books.

—Wen-hsin Ye

Richard H. & Laurie C. Morrison Chair Professor in History, University of California at Berkeley

Ishikawa Yoshihiro 石川禎浩 is Professor at the Institute for Research in Humanities, Kyoto University.

Joshua A . Fogel is Canada Research Chair Professor in modern Chinese history at York University.

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