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Reviews 345 All in all, while Bajo un Mismo Techo does not contain pafhbreaking new scholarship, it is a very interesting refocusing and redeployment ofexisting research to spodight a crucial transition period, and the questions it raises ought to cause analogous questions to rise in readers' minds about the fate ofthe Chinese family during China's present turbulent social transformation. Katherine Carlitz University of Pittsburgh Katherine Carlitz is adjunctfaculty in theAsian Studies Program ofthe University of Pittsburgh, specializing in studies ofMingfiction, drama, and social history. N OTE S 1. Patricia Ebrey, "The Chinese Family and the Spread ofConfucian Values," in Gilbert Rozman, ed., The EastAsian Region: Confucian Heritage and Its Modern Adaptation (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1991), pp. 78-82. Gregor Benton. China's Urban Revolutionaries: Explorations in the History ofChinese Trotskyism, 1921-1952. Revolutionary Studies. Atlantic Highlands , New Jersey: Humanities Press, 1996. 269 pp. Hardcover, $55.00, isbn 0-391-03921-0. Paperback $19.95, isbn 0-391-03947-4. Gregor Benton's recent work, China's Urban Revolutionaries: Explorations in the History ofChinese Trotskyism, 1921-1952, is, according to the author, "a digest of research and thinking . . . over the past fifteen years," in the continuing and still somewhat fragmented search for a clear picture of Chinese Trotskyism. The book is structured in two parts. First, Benton provides his account of Chinese Trotskyism by examining the topic from a selection of useful points ofview. After discussing the historical context into which Chinese Trotskyism emerged as a form of oppositional politics to the early CCP, Benton examines its origins both in China and in the Soviet Union. Then he relates the role of Chen Duxiu and Peng Shuzhi in the development of the movement. Lastiy, he assesses the influence of Chinese Trotskyism on such areas as the larger CCP, the war against Japan , the worldwide Trotskyist movement, Chinese literature, and the develop-©1997 by University ment ofdemocracy in China. The second section ofthe volume consists of ofHawai ?Pressextensive appendixes, including Zheng Chaolin's special studyofChen Duxiu's relationship to Trotskyism, a section regarding Wang Fanxi's critique ofTang 346 China Review International: Vol. 4, No. 2, Fall 1997 Baolin's History ofChinese Trotskyism, and a biographical list of the principal figures in the Chinese Trotskyist movement. Benton presents an assiduously researched account of a topic whose story is complicated by the intense political fracas that surrounded it and by the fact that it was forced underground for its alleged heresies. This is a history pieced together from archives, interviews, memoirs, and letters, including published and unpublished material in a wide range oflanguages, which, thanks to Benton's impressive linguistic and research skills, are now made accessible to an English-reading audience . The author advises die reader to resist viewing the book as a comprehensive study of the sum of archival material on Chinese Trotskyism, suggesting instead that it be regarded as an appraisal-to-date of the ongoing and still incomplete "explorations" into the topic. Despite the author's very tentative approach to his findings, he does undertake to evaluate the material for its insight into why the Chinese Trotskyist movement played such an inconsequential role in Chinese politics after 1931. Benton assumes that the destiny of a political party can be foretold by assessing four major components: "the goals that it sets itself, the methods that it adopts to realize them, the resources (human and material) that it can apply to that end, and the odds that it encounters in so doing." He then proceeds to evaluate Chinese Trotskyism in light of these factors. Overall an impressive and convincing study, the quality of the volume is only mildly affected by occasional recourse to bias-laden vocabulary that, although it enlivens the reading process, deprives us of die reassuring scholarly objectivity that such fine research deserves. Margaret B. Denning Slippery Rock University Peggy Denning is a professor ofhistory specializing in Chinese history during the Sino-Japanese War. ...


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