Quelling the People

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Quelling the People
Quelling the People.jpg
Front cover of Quelling the People
Author Timothy Brook
Country United States
Language English
Genre History
Publisher

Oxford University Press,

Lester Publishing,
Stanford University Press
Publication date
1992,
1 December 1998
Media type Print (Hardback, Paperback)
Pages 292
ISBN ISBN 0-8047-3638-3 (paper)

Quelling the People: The Military Suppression of the Beijing Democracy Movement is a history book which investigates the conflict between the Chinese democracy movement in Beijing, China and the communist-ruled Chinese state's People's Liberation Army, culminating in the confrontation between the citizens of Beijing and the People's Liberation Army at Tiananmen Square in June 1989.[1]

The book is written by Timothy Brook, a distinguished Canadian historian[2] who specializes in the study of China (Sinology).[3]

Synopsis[edit]

Quelling the People investigates the conflict between the Chinese democracy movement in Beijing, China and the communist-ruled Chinese state's People's Liberation Army. The democracy movement began during the Beijing Spring in 1978 and the conflict culminated in a mass confrontation between the citizens of Beijing and the People's Liberation Army at Tiananmen Square in June 1989.[1] The immediate conflict at Tiananmen Square was brought to an end by the People's Liberation Army which used force, causing the death of hundreds of the protesters.[1] The massacre was followed by a "media silence"[1] and the suppression of the democracy movement.

In the book, which centres around a "detailed reconstruction of the Tiananmen Square massacre on June 3 and 4, 1989,"[4] the author examines the confusion of, and mistakes made by, the Chinese authorities, as well as the role of the "Tank Man", the student who famously stood his ground in front of a column of four approaching army tanks.[1]

Reception[edit]

June Teufel Dreyer, writing in The China Quarterly states that "the author skillfully weaves eyewitness accounts into a smoothly flowing narrative. Two maps of Beijing assist the reader in following the actions described, and there is a useful chronology of events. The work should interest both generalists and specialists, and spans the disciplines of history, political science, and sociology."[5] However, the reviewer finds it "difficult to accept Brook's conclusion, advanced in the final pages of the book and without prior conceptualization" in which he makes a "startling last-minute resort to external imperialism-as-bogeyman."[5]

In the journal Pacific affairs, Tony Saich is of the opinion that "the author has done a magnificent job of reconstructing the military mobilization in Beijing and the role of the People's Liberation Army in the bloody suppression of the Chinese people's movement." He sums up Quelling the People as "a moving book that vividly displays the extraordinary bravery of the residents of Beijing."[6]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e Staff (11 December 2005). "FRONTLINE: The Tank Man: Interviews: Timothy Brook (edited transcript)". Public Broadcasting Service. Retrieved 2010-01-24. 
  2. ^ Dirda, Michael (27 January 2008). "Painting the World: How a hunger for tea and tobacco created global trade.". Washington Post. Retrieved 2010-01-22. 
  3. ^ Conrad, Peter (29 June 2008). "A time when every picture told a story". The Observer. Retrieved 2010-01-22. 
  4. ^ Staff. "Quelling the People: The Military Suppression of the Beijing Democracy Movement: product description". Amazon.com. Retrieved 2010-01-27.  From the book's back cover "blurb".
  5. ^ a b Dreyer, June Teufel (December 1993). "Quelling the People: The Military Suppression of the Beijing Democracy Movement by Timothy Brook". The China Quarterly (Cambridge University Press on behalf of the School of Oriental and African Studies) (136): 988–989. JSTOR 655602.  Special Issue: Greater China (December 1993).
  6. ^ Saich, Tony (Winter 1993–1994). "Quelling the People: The Military Suppression of the Beijing Democracy Movement by Timothy Brook". Pacific Affairs (Pacific Affairs, University of British Columbia) 66 (4): 573–574. JSTOR 2760686. 

References[edit]

External links[edit]

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