Mao: A Biography

Paperback (Print)
Buy New
Buy New from
Buy Used
Buy Used from
(Save 28%)
Item is in good condition but packaging may have signs of shelf wear/aging or torn packaging.
Condition: Used – Good details
Used and New from Other Sellers
Used and New from Other Sellers
from $7.46
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
(Save 78%)
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (20) from $7.46   
  • New (7) from $19.58   
  • Used (13) from $7.39   


“Terrill is a biographical genius. . . . His warts-and-all portrait of Mao is unrelentingly fascinating from beginning to end.”—Houston Chronicle
“Indispensable to understanding the inseparable relationship between Mao and events in China over the last century. What’s more, it’s fascinating reading.”—Chicago Sun-Times
Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Terrill is a biographical genius. . . . His warts-and-all portrait of Mao is unrelentingly fascinating from beginning to end."—Houston Chronicle

"Indispensable to understanding the inseparable relationship between Mao and events in China over the last century. What's more, it's fascinating reading."—Chicago Sun-Times

"An extraordinary achievement. . . . A brilliant narrative interpretation of the experiences, motivations, and major acts of China's greatest revolutionary."—John K. Fairbank

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Portrait of Mao's rise from a rebellious peasant to China's revered and ultimately outgrown leader. Oct.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780804729215
  • Publisher: Stanford University Press
  • Publication date: 2/28/2000
  • Edition description: 1
  • Pages: 576
  • Product dimensions: 5.00 (w) x 8.00 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Ross Terrill is a Research Associate at Harvard University's East Asian Research Center. He is the author of several books on China, including Madame Mao: The White-Boned Demon.
Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Introduction 13
1 Prologue 28
2 Childhood (1893-1910) 31
3 Knowledge for What? (1910-18) 45
4 Wider World in Peking and Shanghai (1918-21) 64
5 Organizing (1921-27) 86
6 Struggle (1927-35) 119
7 A Grip on the Future (1935-36) 149
8 Fighting Japan (1936-45) 167
9 The Sage (1936-45) 186
10 A Ripening Peach (1945-49) 203
11 "We Shall Put Aside the Things We Know Well" (1949-50) 226
12 Remolding (1951-53) 241
13 Building (1953-56) 254
14 Doubts (1956-57) 271
15 Tinkering with the System (1958-59) 291
16 Russia and Beyond (1958-64) 310
17 Retreat (1961-64) 322
18 The Furies of Utopia (1965-69) 337
19 A Tall Thing Is Easy to Break (1969-71) 367
20 Nixon (1972) 389
21 Fractured Vision (1973-75) 401
22 An Arrow Near the End of Its Flight (1976) 435
23 Epilogue 459
Postscript 469
Reference Notes 489
Bibliography 535
Index 553
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)