Friends and Enemies

Friends and Enemies

The Past, Present and Future of the Communist Party of China

By Kerry Brown
Foreword by Will Hutton

China in the 21st Century

‘Friends and Enemies’ delivers a thorough account of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), explaining its origins and evolution, looking at options for its future, and laying bare its inner workings.

Paperback, 224 Pages

ISBN:9781843317814

July 2009

£14.99, $24.95

  • About This Book
  • Reviews
  • Author Information
  • Series
  • Table of Contents
  • Links

About This Book

‘Friends and Enemies’ delivers a lucid and provocative history of one of the world’s largest and most successful political organizations, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). Grounding his account in the origins of the CCP, Brown charts its early struggles and the emergence of the leadership of Mao Zedong in the 1930s, before unravelling the role of the Party during the Second World War and the vicious internecine struggle that culminated in the CCP’s ascent to power in 1949.

The narrative tackles the successes and failures of the CCP in the post-war era, analysing this chequered period with a close eye to the internal machinations of the Party, and then boldly considers the prospects of the CCP in the future. Brown produces a forthright analysis of where the Party stands in the 21st century, and assesses its three greatest challenges – energy, the environment and the economy – before culminating in a discussion of the potential for democratic reform and the risks the Party faces while it attempts to become a modern party in charge of a globally important economy.

‘Friends and Enemies’ is based on a combination of research and Brown’s own experiences as a business person and diplomat in China, where he lived for seven years. It has also benefited from the input of analysts of the Party from the UK and US, and from talks with Party officials at senior and working level in China.

Reviews

'Not a line is wasted in this book. It is packed with details and sweeping explanations of historical periods and current circumstances. The book is a treasure trove for all those dealing with China. The insights Brown has accumulated during his long engagement with the country are invaluable and set the book aside from loudly advertised books on China—books that are also designed for the general reader but likely to showcase all that has gone wrong, pointing the finger at the bad guys in the Communist Party without attempting to understand policy decisions. The book should be on the shelves of all those who engage with China professionally, and of all who take a private interest in the country.' —Oliver Hensengerth, University of Southampton, in ‘International Affairs’

‘Highly accessible and stimulating and an excellent introduction to one of the great forces of the 20th and 21st centuries.’ —Michael Rank, ‘Asian Affairs’

‘“Friends and Enemies” is an intelligent and accessible history of the Party. Brown condenses almost ninety years of CCP history (till 2008) into the first hundred pages. [It] is a useful complement to more detailed, technical sources […] The book would make excellent reading for students, and I recommend it to anyone with an interest in modern China who is not already a master of the twists and turns of twentieth-century Chinese politics.’ —Mireille Mazard, ‘The Newsletter’, International Institute for Asian Studies

'Dr Kerry Brown does the business in a brisk, no-nonsense way. For those who want an easy, short and very readable guide to an organisation which has shaped China's present and could help mould the world's future, Brown's book can be warmly recommended.' —Chris Patten, ‘The Independent’

'Brown's book is an indispensable insight into the party's mind, culture and history. Unless we understand, we cannot help. And this book helps that understanding.' —Will Hutton, excerpted from the Foreword

'Anyone who wants to understand China has to understand the Chinese Communist Party and where it is taking the country. This truly insightful guide to the world's biggest, most secretive and most powerful party is required reading.' —Isabel Hilton, Author, Broadcaster and Editor, ‘China Dialogue’

Author Information

Kerry Brown is Senior Fellow on the Asia Programme, Chatham House; Associate of the China Policy Institute, Nottingham University; and was a Visiting Fellow, East Asia Studies Centre, London School of Economics. He is a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. His publications include ‘Struggling Giant’ (Anthem Press, 2007) and ‘The Rise of the Dragon’ (Chandos, 2008).

Series

China in the 21st Century

Table of Contents

Introduction; Chapter One: A Disease of the Heart: The Rise to Power of the CCP; Chapter Two: Revolutionary Administrator: The Party in Power; Chapter Three: The Party in the Reform Era; Chapter Four: The Chinese Communist Party from 1992 to 2008; Chapter Five: The Challenges Facing China and What they mean for the CCP; Chapter Six: The Chinese Communist Party as it moves into the 21st Century; Conclusion: Gambling with the Devil: Why the Fate of the CCP Matters to Us All

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