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The Private Life of Chairman Mao Paperback – April 2, 1996
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Top Customer Reviews
The other chapters can't keep pace with this frantic opening but it is a batman's biography of one of China's most important leaders. The author was his doctor for most of his later years and gives an account not just of the politics of Mao but of every aspect of his life.
The author's role was to keep Mao alive and to fend of disease. This was not easy. Mao for instance refused to clean his teeth. As a result his teeth were covered in a sort of green coating.Read more ›
The book presents a picture of Chairman Mao Zedung and of China very different than one would remember from living through the era. Perhaps most interesting (did our government intelligence services have any idea of this?) is the degree to which Mao seemed to admire the United States, while all the time doing everything he could to antagonize it. But this was typical of the man Dr. Li paints, a man full of contradictions.
One episode in the book (I won't spoil it) that is absolutely fascinating is Mao's reaction to three requests Krushchev made of Mao in 1958. Mao's reaction to Krushchev (defiance and rudeness) even so early on was not something I think we knew much about, and is interesting, indeed.
The book really tantalized me with one big unanswered question. Li portrays Mao as a virtual recluse, lolling around his various bedrooms, never having an office or any kind of work schedule. He seems to have successfully avoided any responsibility for government activity, and in fact spent most of his time in power back stabbing those he put into positions of government.
But Dr. Li leaves half the story untold: how did Mao manage to stay in power while being so reclusive? Dr. Li does not speculate about what Mao did when he wasn't with him, so he does not even address this question.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Finally got a chance to read the book after having read about it for a decade at least. Not disappointed; a rare close look at the physiology and psychology of a man who... Read morePublished 3 months ago by XML
This book is a really good read. You learn a lot about Mao's personal life and the writing is brilliant and really fast paced. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Alex Li
Dr. Li Zhisui is an admirable man who has compiled an exhaustive history of his personal relationship with Chairman Mao. Read morePublished 8 months ago by cade
Is it a memoir or historical fiction? A very easy look into China under Chairman Mao.Published 9 months ago by Keith Reynolds
I bought the Chinese version of this book in 1995 without knowing the stories behind the all the excitements. Read morePublished 9 months ago by bookwm
EXCELLENT! Most thorough and revealing account of any of China's great leaders. A must read for those interest in world affairs, Asia, and especially, Mao.Published 10 months ago by Kindle Customer