on Rolf Martens 1942-2008

Malmö Maoist activist, Rolf Martens died on the 22nd of April 2008. He is buried at Limhamn’s cemetery.

His Wikipedia page notes he was Swedish chess champion in 1967 “and later, after I had learned some Marxism, made some “shocking” discoveries in its opening theory”. In fact there is a considerable literature on the Internet concerning his chess career and his contributions to chess theory.see https://www.365chess.com/players/Rolf_Martens

The entry notes – without elaborating that “he devoted himself to political activity, during which during the last 30 years of his life he stubbornly proclaimed an odd variant of Maoism”.

A former volunteer on the Marxists Internet Archive [M.I.A.], Martens was best known for his prolific publishing endeavours and internet engagement which was ironically described as “his personal big character poster board”.

Born in Norway in 1942, Martens moved in 1950 settling in Malmo the third-largest city in Sweden. He had a university degree with mathematics and physics, however was employed worked as a welder for 24 years. Rolf Martens worked as a welder at Åkermans workshop in Eslöv.  He was an active trade unionist and over the years involved in various campaigns including the Swedish anti-EU-membership campaign; anti- racism demonstrations and counter-demonstrations; support group for DR Congo; and was pro-nuclear power [At Barsebäck in southern Sweden, less than 20km from Copenhagen,two reactors came on-line in the mid-70’s. The plant was the focus of domestic protest during the 1976 “nuclear elections” and the site of large demonstrations at the time of the 1980 Swedish nuclear referendum]. Martens was pro-nuclear energy hence the cyber reference to ‘nuclear viking’.

Marten’s political engagement had begun in 1972, first in the anti-Vietnam-war movement, and as Swedish Maoists played a key role in organizing anti-Vietnam War protests Martens embraced the vibrant Swedish Maoist movement. In 1972 he joined Kommunistiska Förbundet Marxist-Leninisterna (revolutionärerna), abbreviated KFML(r) – The Communist League Marxist-Leninists (the revolutionaries). It was founded in 1970 by a splinter group from the pro-Chinese KFML. He was excluded from it after only two years. In 1974, Matens published “Dokument om kampen mot de pseudo-marxister, som vill undertrycka marxismen-leninismen och arbetar den sovjetiska socialimperialismen i händerna” [Document about the fight against the pseudo-marxists who want to suppress Marxism-Leninism and work hand-in-hand with Soviet social imperialism].

He recalls, “I was inexperienced in 1974, and in the then struggle made many mistakes, both of the “Left” sectarian type and of the Right opportunist one, and, not least, at first had difficulties in seeing how I, as only one individual, could successfully combat the then “KFML(r)” which, after all, in the 1973 parliamentary elections in Sweden (voters: 5 million), had received some 16 000 votes. But I didn’t land with the Right opportunists either (e.g. a “fraternal party” to the CPC called the “SKP” which later went with Deng and then disappeared in the early ’80s)”.

In 1974 Martens came under the influence of Hartmut Dicke (Klaus Sender) of the KPD/ML (NEUE EINHEIT), in self-exile in Malmö, Sweden, at the time due to persecution in West Germany.

A memoir on his webpage stated that he “endeavoured, and still am endeavouring, to act as an individual representative of Marxism in Sweden, of course always striving to contribute towards the creation of a genuinely Marxist-Leninist party in this country. In May 1975, I started publishing a series of leaflets (mainly) in Swedish, the INFORMATIONSBLAD series… from late 1974 on, I’ve participated in various organizations and coalitions of a united-front type, for causes which I’ve held it important to support.”

There were Martens’ disputes within the Sweden-China Friendship Committee. He was expelled from the Malmö chapter of the Swedish Palestine solidarity committee in 1983 which saw an explanatory text published, “A position on the Palestina Group congress in 1983”. Martens was critical of the role played by Rob Weltman – then the most influential leading member of the PGS, an organization in Sweden – “pointing out, and publicly proving, that Rob Weltman was working for forces wishing to subvert the PGS. For this I was kicked out”.

And in April 1990 Martens broke with the “bourgeois” KPD/ML (NEUE EINHEIT) it seems around the issue of their perceived lack of opposition to what the hostile KPD/ML described as “the Green and Alternative swindlers and so-called Ecologist movement”

The KPD/ML (NEUE EINHEIT), complained that Martens, a former member, kept publishing on the internet libels about the organization, at the same time trying to give the impression that he still has some connection with them, and was publishing articles and unauthorized translations of publications from Neue Eineit without permission.

“He only represents himself.” – NEUE EINHEIT Extra Nr.27 from Aug 15th 1996

Martens was a Steering Committee member involved with the Danish & Swedish chapters of the support group known as the International Emergency Committee to Defend the Life of Abimael Guzman. Publications that arose from disputes involving Martens included:

1) ” Leve 1 Maj” [Albertslund (Denmark),01 May 1996; 7 pages]; 2) “Forsvar Formand Gonzalos Liv!” [ Albertslund, 1996, 1 page]; 3) “Declaration Concerning Certain Suspicions” [2 copies: Malmö, 27 April 1995, 1 page, 2 sides (“to the editors of El Diario Internacional,are the anonymous leaders of the RIM agents of the CIA or not?”)]; 4) “To the Coordinating Committee.[Malmö, 12 April 19 94; 1 page, 2 sides]; 5) ” International Call to Action 20-21 May 1994″ [1 page, 2 sides]; 6) “Al Comité Coordinador” [Spanish edition of nr. 4; 1 2 April 1994]; 7) “A Proposal to Convene a Plenary Meeting of the Steering Committee of the IEC”[Malmö, 02 February 1995, 1 page, 2 sides]; 8) “Fö rklarung” [Malmö, July 1995; 1 page, 2 sides]; “Videovisning: You Must Tell the World” [Malmö, 1994, 1 page]

From late 1995 on, Martens was posting to Internet newsgroups and mailing lists, in English, Swedish and some other languages, among other things publishing “UNITE! (etc) Info” series.

FOERENA ER! Info en/de/fr/es/se series

Advocates the political line of Marx, Lenin and Mao Zedong. Each
item # will be posted in one or more language(s).

Still to be found on mail archive sites are Rolf Marten’s multi-part instalments contributions dating from the mid-1990s onwards.….

Martens’ disputes were not simply restricted to the internet although Louis Proyect recall that he had to unsub Rolf at least 2 times from Marxmail, and former Chairman of the RCLB, Chris Burford waited in vain for Martens to apologise for Martens labelling him a cop in an acrimonious exchange on Marxism-General list in 1997. Burford, eventually  a member of Democratic Left, called for Martens withdraw from the list, explaining:

  • He stirs up unprincipled disputes. He appears to be unable to cooperate with a group sharing his political aims in Sweden, and there have been references to his falling out with a number of groups. Here on the internet despite regarding the Communist Party of Peru as having significant petty bourgeois tendencies he fanned a flame war against one supporter of that party in support of another group, one of whose members he now describes as a “swindler” and another as “lying”.
  • Despite apparently attempting to set up a new international on the internet according to the principles of Mao Zedong (who did not believe in an international) he appears singularly ignorant of Mao’s advice about not making personal attacks but enjoys name calling and appears to try to promote it. This might just be a childish pleasure in puns, but the role of police agents in causing divisions is well established, including their tendency to call others agents to distract attention from themselves and add to the confusion and distrust.
  • From: Chris Burford <cburford-AT-gn.apc.org>
  • Subject: M-G: Just a general without soldiers?
  • 29 Jul 1997 06:47:09 +0100

Actually in the real world neither of them were undercover cops!

These exchanges were not unusual in the febrile atmosphere that passed for political dialogue at that time. Martens recalled “… some sharp exchanges recently on the Jefferson Village Virginia Marxism list, where I condemned the 1979-1988 flagrant aggression against Afghanistan by Soviet social-imperialism and certain people very heatedly *defended* that aggression” .

Others who populated the internet lists would respond to “the Swedish individual Rolf Martens who does not even claim to uphold Hua Guofeng while still supporting his arrest of the “Gang of Four” and still claiming to oppose Deng Xiaoping. When asked [by MIM] who concretely he supported if not Hua Guofeng, Rolf Martens has no one to mention, only Mao, who was already dead.”

A flavour of Marten’s analysis and argumentation can be found in (these reformatted) pieces

  1. martens_gang of four
  2. martens_debate with olaechea
  3. martens_exposure of the rim

Clearly, Martens resembled what he criticised others for – a general without an army.

Just read…..Night March: among India’s revolutionary guerrillas

Alpha Shah,

Night March: among India’s revolutionary guerrillas [London: Hurst & Co. 2018]

In a richly detailed and almost lyrical reading, here is the creative nonfiction elaboration of L.S.E. anthropologist, Dr Alph Shah’s more academic exploration centred on her experience amongst the Adivasis of eastern India. In 2010, engaged in field work research, Alpha Shah embarked on a seven-night trek, walking 250 kilometres through the dense, hilly forests with a column of People’s Liberation Guerrilla Army.

Not many author decides to publish a story that is nearly a decade old. In this instance her account illustrates both sustainability and equilibrium. Ten years on the mixed motives and effects detailed in her account remain potent factors in maintaining and feeding the struggles in the rural rebel heartlands that India’s security and media label a “red corridor”.

Not the format to challenge head on the well-rehearsed counter-insurgency narrative as set out (for instances, with caveats) in Arun Srivastava’s “Maoism in India” [Prabhat Prakashan 2008], however obliquely discussed are such persistent claims and questioning of the romanticising of the struggle as if there were no contradictions amidst the setbacks of the decade since the events of Dr Shah’s literal night march.

The obvious sympathy for those who form the focus of her academic engagement, and desire for social justice has not blunted Dr Shah’s critical gaze. Shah allows the combatants to speak for themselves in her memoir often on contentious concerns that question what seldom appears in partisan propaganda and sometimes erupt in polemical fury. But here, in a statement not dated by time, is a quietly spoken observation from a leading combatant:

“Our capacity has been reduced to the military needs of the war.” In response to the intense state repression, they have increased their attention to the military attacks and counter-attacks at the expense of the political education of their soldiers, the ethical foundation of their cadres and the politicisation of their supporters

Night March provides an insight to a protracted struggle that has no easy answers but could have earth-shattering consequences, and has already, as Shah testifies, a profound effect on individuals.

A useful guide to the contending literature on this under reported struggle, and then too often reduced to a litany of “crime reporting”, comes with the inclusion of Shah’s bibliographic essay on Naxalites and the literature that is “interesting for what it says about the authors and their perspectives as it is for its analysis.”


Link to  Reading about the ‘Naxalites’

LLCO: an Extended Footnote

On the Internet even the marginal can be on somebodies favourite list even if little known outside the orbit of their own ego. Not all individual commentators should be categorised together or warrant the attention they receive; their value may be entertainment rather than thought provoking. But sometimes you cannot but follow the white rabbit down the hole…..

The political genealogy of the Leading Light Communist Organization is in various small, mostly Maoist North American groups, with much of the core idea goes back to the mid-1990s from early shaping experiences with MIM, It’s Right to Rebel “think tank” experience and web journal, Monkey Smashes Heaven. There was political work in Mexico, without really establishing deep roots, along the way. There was a fifteen year development as “the best of the best, warrior geniuses” developed “Maoist-Third Worldist” positions as “the new line we were creating.” From Denver USA the first group calling itself Leading Light Communist Organisation was formed in 2010. Bibliographical background, mostly an unverifiable account was supplied in an interview with fellow LLCO member in 2017.

Internet criticism on Redditt of LLCO that “long story short, the Leading Light Communist Organization really has nothing besides a nice website” had the unsatisfyingly self-serving reply from a supporter of the clandestine organization, “Prairie Fire” that “I doubt any answer I give will satisfy you. If you don’t see the light, you don’t see it. The advanced do see it.”

Eventually the anonymity of “Prairie Fire” gave way to the self-aggrandisement that saw the self-publishing website Lulu carry the endorsement that:

Brennen Ryan, “Leading Light,” “Prairie Fire,” “El Hector,” is one of the most important theorists of revolution in our age. His works span many topics ranging from political economy to epistemology to environmentalism to history to aesthetics. He has been described as “the Marx of the present epoch.”

Stalwart  and founder-leader of the Leading Light Communist Organization, Brennen Ryan’s self-identifying revolutionary genius is based on thin ground: he has put into the public domain a couple of pieces of secondary research work largely hung around the line struggles in Maoist China’s Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution, principally Seas are rising, Clouds and Waters Raging, but more generally produces writings of a preacher’s revivalist tone with bald assertions that soon become ritualistic frequent. However, the emphasis of self-cultivation – to live according to our best selves – speaks with a voice that seemingly has an audience in Bangladesh and Ghana, and has a friend in fellow sensation-in-his-own-mind Jason of Maoist Rebel News (so far not prosecuted under the Trade Description Act).

Brennen’s analysis, rooted in the idea of the global rich versus the global poor, built upon a sense that the world is deeply unjust and is informed by an analysis of the class struggle in China in the Sixties particularly when

“Lin Biao died in 1971. China’s support for people’s wars around the world is replaced by an opportunistic, nationalist calculation not unlike the Soviet revisionist one. China begins aligning with the Western imperialists. This nationalist opportunism is sometimes associated with a doctrine called “Three Worlds Theory,” but the theory was really just window dressing for the practice.”

Brennen said of Seas are rising, Clouds and Waters Raging, “the book traces the development of not just the Cultural Revolution ideology of the Maoists, but also the dual institutions that allowed the Maoists to bypass and challenge the traditional, bureaucratic chains of command. Once examined closely, it is hard to imagine how the Cultural Revolution could have happened without Lin Biao.”

A position not dissimilar to some bourgeois scholars of the Cultural Revolution, who also acknowledge – as did Mao – that there was no masterplan that unraveled and the accidental nature of the developments driven by the mass movements involved. And he is not the first to raise the point that “Obviously there is a lot of deception going on in the post-Lin Biao Maoist narratives.”

“There are a couple reasons I have focused on Lin Biao in my work. The first reason is that Lin Biao was a revolutionary. He represented some of the best of the Maoist era. He symbolized the Cultural Revolution and worldwide people’s war. That’s good stuff. Secondly, I view Lin Biao as a kind of barometer. How you view Lin Biao really reflects whether you are stuck in the dogma of police narratives and metaphysics or whether you have genuine scientific potential. If you are afraid to question dogma, then you are not very useful to the proletariat. If you are comfortable with dogma, injustice, police narratives, etc., then, again, you are not really leadership, vanguard, Leading Light material.”

His message contains reasonable, logical and pertain observations like

“We cannot reform our way to revolution. Revolution is a deep, fundamental reorganization of all of society, it means disempowering the reactionary classes. It means empowering the revolutionary classes” and

The next wave of revolution is not going to be made by dogmatically repeating the past. We need to learn from the past, but also go beyond it. Those who are stuck in the past really do a disservice to the masses”


Brennen argues in the same vein as earlier Third worldist trends that extended the concept of a Labour Aristocracy to embrace all working people geographically located in the Global North regardless of their local relationship to the means of productions and actual standard of consumption in a “Global Class Analysis” that echoes Lin Biao’s “global countryside” that opposed a “global city.” Leading Light’s line is not that there is no proletariat in the First World countries. Rather that there is no significant proletariat in the First World countries.

“In fact, the last century of revolution has taught us that revolution will happen in the weakest links of the system, on the edges of global economic power. Lenin’s prediction that the storm center of world revolution moving eastward came to past. Mao spoke of the east wind prevailing over the west wind. Today, the entire world economy is a single entity. Understanding the question of friends and enemies, Mao’s first question requires a class analysis that is truly global. It is not just First World capitalists who are reactionary enemies, but most people in the First World. Ordinary people in the First World have far more to lose than their chains. They have wealth, privileges, houses, cars, electronics, security, leisure, opportunities, mobility. They have access to capital. They have social wealth, infrastructure, land, modern institutions. Ordinary people in the First World do not have a class interest in revolution.”

Amongst the sensible soundbites there are the messianic expression of a medieval true believer in revelatory truth.

“After much difficulty, we continue to assemble the greatest revolutionary minds and hearts alive. The most thoughtful, the most daring, the most caring will be with us. We are Leading Lights, the warriors, the martyrs. We are the Leading Light, the organization of the new type to initiate the Global People’s War, to purge the world of all suffering, so that a new humanity and land will flourish. Our future is our own because we have the science, the leadership, the organization, the loyalty, the discipline, the daring, the courage to really win. There is an oath, a command that we have written on our souls: One Earth. One people. One organization. One leadership. One life to give. My life for the masses, for the land, for the Leading Light.”

Like the Avakianists and their “New Synthesis,” Brennen claims that Leading Light Communism represents a new breakthrough in revolutionary science, one that makes previous ones obsolete. The appeal of Maoism said to be that it romanticises guerrilla struggles in the third world in a pseudo-intellectual rhetoric which suggest a shallow understanding of what constitutes Maoism. So they claim to transcend their ideological roots in Maoism and regard those who still have an identification with it as part of the ideological opposition. Brennen sees the left as stuck in dogma. In 2011, writing as Prairie Fire he criticised the experienced Communist Party of the Philippines as

“armed revisionists. While they may be landing some blows against imperialism, they are not communists. Besides being completely dead intellectually, they are crude dogmatists, especially Jose Maria Sison.”

He is equally dismissive and critical of the newly emerged radical First-World based Maoists and Gonzaloist trends:

“The idea that Maoism is some kind of “third, higher stage” is not a new idea. Many Maoists today think this “new stage” stuff is from Gonzalo in Peru. It isn’t. Before Gonzalo was talking this way, India’s Charu Majumdar was. And Charu Majumdar just got it from his contemporaries in China. The idea goes back to Maoist discourse that was popularized in the mid and late 1960s. The “new stage” idea is specifically from Lin Biao. It is mentioned over and over in such obscure texts as the original introduction to Quotations from Chairman Mao Zedong. Yes, the “red book.” It is even in Lin Biao’s “Report to the Ninth Congress of the Chinese Communist Party” in 1969. The inability to deal with history honestly is part of the comical nature of Maoism today.”

brennen ryan

I think of Maoism a lot like Maoists once used to think of Hoxhaism, as “dogmatic revisionism.” I see it as a dead trend and a dead end.


LLCO has produced a body of literature to substantiate its Third Worldist political orientation. The Maoist adjective now dropped.

A free introductory booklet, Forward! breaks down the basics of Leading Light Communism. It addresses many of the most frequently asked questions, and advises that “All new cadre and supporters should familiarize themselves with these answers. These answers are the beginning of knowledge, not the end. Keep advancing. Prove yourself. Follow the Leading Light all the way. Be the Leading Light.”product_thumbnail

Publish in various languages, illustration is AVANTE: Questões Frequentes parte 1: O que é a Luz Guiadora?” is Frequently Asked Questions of LLCO in Portuguese.

Other publications include the Leading Light magazine that focuses on a main topic. See https://llco.org/study/

Leading Light 1:  The General Line
Leading Light 2:  Science In Command
Leading Light 3:  Orientation
Leading Light 4:  Revolutionary History
Leading Light 5:  Practice

Available in various languages including Bengali e.g.

A theoretical publication, Monkey Smashes Heaven saw two issues consisting of reprints of web-based articles attributed to “Prairie Fire”. In addition there are

Casting Pearls 2015 Lulu. By Prairie Fire

We are proud to announce the publication of Casting Pearls: philosophy, science, art, revolution by Leading Light Commander Prairie Fire. This work outlines some of the biggest breakthroughs in contemporary revolutionary science, product_thumbnail (3)Leading Light Communism. This volume also contains important, significant, unpublished materials. All over the world, the revolutionary movement is discovering the importance of science once again. From Bangladesh to Brazil, from Myanmar to Germany, from India to Canada, from Mexico to Russia, from the Philippines to the United States the masses are waking up. It is a must read for all those who seek a better world.

By whatever name he goes by, Brennen is offering the world an answer. He is confident and full of self-belief similar to other American leaders whose ideas and practice of leadership stem from privilege and entitlement. So far less people have bought into the version of LLCO that is being marketed via the world wide web.

“I embrace the best in all the Leading Lights of the past. In that sense, I am a Marxist, a Leninist, a Maoist, and a Lin Biaoist. However, that is not all that I am. Not only do I embrace what is the best in the revolutionary tradition, I embrace the most advanced breakthroughs today. I am a Leading Light Communist, a revolutionary scientist. Truth, as best as it can be understood, is my great leader.”

“…as Leading Lights, we are condemned to lead. We carry the world on our shoulders. We need to understand the past, but if we are to have victory, we must go beyond it. Elevate the science. Advance the science. Science. Science. Science. Leading Light Communism is the key to the future, our great destiny.”

Unverified Afternote

The website Soviet Broadcast posted this item:

April 20 2019, 11:12 AM

For those unaware former figurehead of the LLCO Prairie Fire (Hector) passed away on April 18th due to a heroin overdose.

Reading More About Mao

Research Note:  bibliographic information on essays and articles that look at various aspects of Mao Zedong Thought with links where available. Of course, each item will have its own sources and selected further readings to build the library of material dedicated to explore Mao and his legacy.


Mao Zedong Thought Lives:

Volume 1 ~ Essays in Commemoration of Mao’s Centennial.

Jose Maria Sison & Stefan Engels (eds) 1995 Utrecht: Center for Social Studies, & Essen: Verlag Neuer Weg.

Contents | Mao Zedong Thought Lives

Stefan Engels | Mao Zedong’s Teachings on the Mode of Thinking

Alice G. Guillermo | Mao Zedong’s Revolutionary Aesthetics and ‘its influence on the Philippine Struggle

Armando Liwanag | Marxism-Leninism-Mao Zedong Thought as Guide to the Philippine Revolution

Otto Vargas | Reflections on a Conversation with Comrade Mao Zedong

William Hinton | Mao’s Socialist line in Chinese Agriculture

William Hinton | Can Dragons Swap pearls with the Dragon god of the Seas?

D.Y.Hsu & P.Y.Ching | Labor reform – Mao vs, Liu-Deng

D.Y.Hsu & P.Y.Ching | Mass Movement: Mao’s Socialist Strategy for Change

Joshua S.S. Muldavin | From Mao to Deng: The Development of Underdevelopment in China

Carol Andreas | Women in the 20th Century China: The Maoist Legacy

Dieter Klauth & Klaus Arnecke | The 100th Birthday of Mao Zedong Marks the Triumph of his Ideas over Modern Revisionism

Carlos Echague | Mao Zedong and Social imperialism   (Different translation verison)

Raymond Lotta | Mao Zedong’s Last Great Battle,1973-76: The High road of Revolution

Wim F. Wertheim | Lasting Significance of the Mao-Model for Third World Countries

Giovanni Scuderi | Mao : A Great leader of the International proletariat and of Oppressed Nations and People

General Declaration on Mao Zedong Thought




Reading Mao


Appreciating Mao




Critical Perspectives on Mao Zedong’s Thought

Arif Dirlik, Paul Healy,  Nick Knight (Editors) 1997 Humanities Press, New Jersey

Contents | Critical Perspectives on Mao Zedong’s Thought

Paul Healy & Nick Knight | Mao Zedong’s Thought and Critical Scholarship

Roxann Prazniak | Mao and the Woman Question in the Age of Green Politics: Some Critical Reflections

Arif Dirlik | Modernism and Antimodernism in Mao Zedong’s Marxism

Nick Knight | The laws of Dialectical Materialism in Mao Zedong’s Thought: The Question of “Orthodoxy”

Paul Healy | A Paragon of Marxist Orthodoxy: Mao Zedong on the Social Formation and Social Change

Richard Levy | Mao, Marx, Political Economy and the Chinese Revolution: Good Questions, Poor Answers

Maurice Meisner | Stalinism in the History of the Chinese Communist party

Richard Johnson | A Compendium of the Infinite: Exercise of Political Purposes in the Philosophy of Mao Zedong

Liu Kang | The Legacy of Mao and Althusser: Problematics of Dialectics, Alternative Modernity and Cultural Revolution

Orin Starn | Maoism in the Andes: The Communist party of Peru-Shining path and the Refusal of History

Sanjay Seth | Indian Maoism: The Significance of the Naxalbari

William J. Dulker | Seeds of the Dragon: The Influence of the Maoist Model in Vietnam

J. Victor Koschmann | Mao Zedong and the Postwar Japanese Left

Emerita Dionisio Distor | Maoism and the Development of the Communist Party of Philippines


Quotations from Chairman Mao TseTung

Mao’s Little Red Book: A Global History

Alexander C. Cook 2014 Cambridge University Press

Contents | Mao’s Little Red Book

Alexander C. Cook | The Spiritual Atom Bomb and Its Spiritual Fall Out

Daniel Leese | A Single Spark: Origins and spread of the Little Red Book

Andrew J. Jones | Quotation Songs: portable media and the Maoist pop songs

Guobin Yang | Mao quotations in factional battles and their afterlives: episodes from Chongqinq

Lanjun Xu | Translation and internationalism

Priyal Lal | Maoism in Tanzania: material connections and shared imaginaries

Sreemati Chakrabarti | Empty Symbol: the Little Red Book in India

David Scott Palmer | The Influence of Maoism in Peru

Elizabeth McGuire | The book that bombed: Mao’s Little Red Thing in the Soviet Union

Elidor Mehili | Mao and the Albanians

Dominique Kirchner Reill | Parisan legacies and anti-imperialist ambitions: the Little Red Book in Italy and Yugoslav

Quinn Slobodian | Badge books and brand books: the Mao Bible in East and West Germany

Julian Bourg | Principally Contradictions: the flourishing of French Maoism

Bill V. Mullen | By the Book: Quotations from Chairman Mao and the making of Afro-American radicalism, 1966-1975

Ban Wang | In the beginning is the word: popular democracy and Mao’s Little Red Book


+ Global Maoism





Robeson Taj Frazier The East Is Black: Cold War China in the Black Radical Imagination

2015   Duke University Press

Quinn Slobodian The Maoist Enemy: China’s Challenge in 1960s East Germany   Journal of Contemporary History 51(3) · July 2015


A Critical Introduction to Mao

edited by Timothy Cheek (2010) Cambridge University Press

Contents | A Critical Introduction to Mao

Timothy Cheek | Mao, Revolution and Memory

Joseph W. Esherick | Making Revolution in 20th Century China

Brantly Womack | From Urban radical to rural Revolutionary: Mao from 1920s to 1937

Hans J. van de Ven | War, Cosmopolitanism and Authority: Mao from 1937 to 1956

Michael Schoenhals | Consuming Fragments of Mao Zedong: The Chairman’s Final two Decades at the Helm

Frederick C. Teiwes | Mao and his Followers

Hung-Yop IP | Mao, Mao Zedung Thought and intellectuals

Delia Devin | Gendered Mao : Mao, Maoism and Women

Daniel Lesse | Mao the Man and Mao the Icon

Geremie R. Barme | For Truly Great Men, Look to This Age Alone: Was Mao Zedong the New Emperor?

Xiao Yanzhong | Recent Mao Zedong Scholarship in China

Alexander C. Cook | Third World Maoism

Charles W. Hayford | Mao’s Journeys to the West: Meanings made of Mao

Hang Yihua & Roderick Macfarquhar | Two Perspectives on Mao Zedong


The Emergence of Maoism: Mao Tse-tung, Chen Po-ta and the search for Chinese theory 1935-1945

Raymond F. Wylie 1980 Stanford University Press

Continuing the Revolution: The Political thought of Mao

John Bryan Starr 1979 Princeton University Press

Cult & Canon: The Origins and Development of State Maoism

Helmut Martin 1982 M E Sharpe, New York

Mao’s China and the Sino-Soviet Split, Ideological Dilemmas

Mingjiang li 2012 Routledge


Mao TseTung’s Immortal Contributions

Bob Avakian 1979 RCP Publications, Chicago.

The Loss in China and the Revolutionary legacy of Mao TtseTung

Bob Avakian 1978 RCP Publications, Chicago


Rethinking Mao: Explorations in Mao Zedong’s Thought 

Nick Knight 2007 Lexington Books

Mao Tse-Tung In The Scales of History

Dick Wilson (ed) 1977 Cambridge University Press

The critique of Ultra-Leftism in China 1958-1981

William A. Joseph 1984 Stanford University Press

Was Mao Really a Monster? : The Academic Response to Chang and Halliday’s “Mao: The Unknown Story”

Gregor Benton (Ed) 2009 Routledge