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From Stalin to MaoAlbania and the Socialist World$
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Elidor Mëhilli

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781501714153

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: September 2018

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501714153.001.0001

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The Great Leap

The Great Leap

(p.187) 6 The Great Leap
From Stalin to Mao

Elidor Mëhilli

Cornell University Press

This chapter takes up the Sino-Soviet split in the 1960s, which delivered a major blow to the idea of a unified socialist world. The Chinese challenge to the Soviet leadership created an opportunity for the unreconstructed party in Albania: retain the essential features of Stalinism, but switch from Moscow to Beijing. What happened to Soviet and Eastern bloc borrowings after this dramatic split? What about all the Soviet-trained cadres, who now seemed like a liability? The chapter shows that the same exchange mechanisms established with Moscow and the Eastern bloc had to be retooled to conform to a new geopolitical reality. State officials approached Beijing for factories, loans, weapons, and engineers. They also looked to Cuba, North Korea, and newly independent African countries for cooperation. The chapter concludes with an analysis of how China’s Cultural Revolution created opportunities for Albanian subjects to make their own global claims.

Keywords:   Sino-Soviet split, China, Khrushchev, Mao Zedong, purges, Third World, Cultural Revolution, Red Guards, religion, violence

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