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What did you love best about The Fall and Rise of China?
Objective perspective of the events and captured the essense of leader's characteristics.
What does Professor Richard Baum bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?
The tone used to describe the events and his personal encounters which would not be conveyed through text alone.
Any additional comments?
As a Taiwan-borne Chinese, it was interesting to contrast the objective narrative of the last 100 years or so history with what I had learnt in Taiwan during childhood. Great to learn aspect of China that was foreign to me before taking this course. I was pleasantly surprised by the depth of understanding of not just the historical events, but the Chinese psyche during those times. Highly recommend it! (I've already recommended this to friends and family)
25 of 25 people found this review helpful
Would you consider the audio edition of The Fall and Rise of China to be better than the print version?
This audio version of The Fall and Rise of China is very interesting and Professor Baum is so excited about his subject matter, he makes it entertaining! His passion transfers to the listener! I will probably listen to it a second time!
What did you like best about this story?
I am around a lot of Chinese people so I wanted to learn about their country so I downloaded this course and I was so surprised at how interesting China's History is and the professor is fabulous! Highly recommended! It was so interesting how he got his material for his Ph.D. dissertation. Amazing story! Listen to find out!
Which scene was your favorite?
Some of the situations that occurred while he was in China were my favorite. He was able to witness history in the making.
12 of 12 people found this review helpful
Starting in the middle of the 19th Century and finishing in about 2009, this course covers a great deal of history in a relatively short number of hours.
The first third or so of the course deals with the decline and collapse of imperial China, and the civil wars that followed - the founding of the People's Republic and the Republic and the battle for control of mainland China.
Then the story picks up Mao, his rise to power and his eventual domination of the Communist Party in China. The course goes into great detail about Mao's policies and the heartbreaking and horrific effects they sometimes had. The second third of the course centres on Mao and on important events like the Great Leap Forward and the Cultural Revolution which is absolutely fascinating.
The last piece of the course covers Deng Xiaoping reforms and how China has radically changed since Mao's death. This is the most relevant to understanding modern China and I learnt a great deal from it.
The lecturer is clearly one of the most knowledgable people on the subject in the world, and googling his name confirms this. His lecture style is rather more like telling a story than explaining history, and this does tend towards slight oversimplifications that are not necessarily obvious to a lay audience (like me). However, I believe this course examines the topics in an unbiased and informed way and deserves praise for it.
The one downside to this course is that the lecturer is clearly more interested in the communist history than the imperial history, and so the first third feels extremely rushed. I think the course would've worked better split into two, and giving the fall of imperial China the time it deserves.
Otherwise, this is a fantastic course, and well worth listening to for anyone who isn't already an expert on modern Chinese history.
5 of 6 people found this review helpful
Great listening, keeps you glued to your device untill you finish. Worth every minute. Now going to search for the authors updated lecture since his finishing of this work in 2008. Loved it.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Amazing and fascinating review of China's history and development... a must see/hear for a modern age.
Thoroughly enjoyed this series. great combination of detail and personal reflections. I highly recommend it!