New Books Network

Julia C. Strauss

State Formation in China and Taiwan

Bureaucracy, Campaign, and Performance

Cambridge University Press 2019

New Books in East Asian StudiesNew Books in HistoryNew Books in Peoples & PlacesNew Books in Political ScienceNew Books in Politics & SocietyNew Books in SociologyNew Books Network May 20, 2020 Sarah Bramao-Ramos

State Formation in China and Taiwan: Bureaucracy, Campaign, and Performance (Cambridge University Press, 2019) by Julia C. Strauss is a comparative study of regime...

State Formation in China and Taiwan: Bureaucracy, Campaign, and Performance (Cambridge University Press, 2019) by Julia C. Strauss is a comparative study of regime consolidation in the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and the Republic of China (Taiwan) after 1949. It examines the ways in which bureaucratic and campaign modalities were deployed in the regime consolidation of the PRC and the ROC by focusing on three paired case studies: state personnel, terror unleased by the state against domestic enemies, and land reform. Throughout it shows that while there were striking similarities in what policies the PRC and ROC implemented, how the polices were conveyed and above all how they were performed differed radically. Meticulously researched and wonderfully nuanced, it is both a fascinating read and an elegant model for how to do comparative history.


Sarah Bramao-Ramos is a PhD candidate at Harvard University in the History and East Asian Languages program. She is interested in translation, Manchu books, and anything with a kesike.