The Skimmer

Out of Mao's Shadow By Philip P. Pan Simon & Schuster; 349 pages

China's past 25 years "have been the best in its 5,000-year history," writes Philip Pan in Out of Mao's Shadow, but it's a schizophrenic sort of success: the country's new prosperity and global clout have gone hand in hand with graft and repression. Pan, a Washington Post correspondent, argues that China's current woes reflect a desire by the Communist Party and ordinary Chinese to forget the lessons of its tragic recent past. Traumas like Mao Zedong's Cultural Revolution left many cynical, disillusioned and willing to exchange freedom for...

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