The most important book I have read in 2019 is Professor Julia Lovell’s brilliant “ Maoisim: a Global History.”
The winner of the 2019 Cundill History Prize, she examines the new Maoist mood in China. This book is indispensable reading if you want to understand what it is that the people of Hong Kong are so fearful of and have taken a stand against.
In November she recorded these two interviews about the book:
It’s a theme which John Gray takes up in an article for Unherd – in which he says that 2019 was when the West finally understood the threat to liberal democracy represented by Maoist ideology, recast by the Chinese Communist Party. The West foolishly thought that the collapse of Soviet Communism in 1989 was the end of the ideological battle and it wrongly assumed that economic reform in China would open the way to a plural, rules based, liberal society which would respect diversity and difference.