Date of Award

1-1-2013

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A.

Department

Josef Korbel School of International Studies

First Advisor

Darrin Hicks

Keywords

Cult, Hero, Heroic, Ideology, Mao, Reagan

Abstract

The political hero cult of Mao Zedong is archetypal in terms of the development of a modern cult of personality. It was centrally planned and used by the Chinese Communist Party as a political weapon. Its development is well-documented, but this paper describes an element of it that has not been discussed, which is the fact that the true object of veneration in the Mao cult was actually his ideology as a distinct entity from the man himself. This ideology's creation was the original purpose of the CCP's participation in his cult because it was a source of political legitimacy. The ideology could also be appropriated by others as a means of attaining power after Mao had shown himself to be out of touch with it and publicly lost face. This is the true objective of political hero cults: a means of perpetuating power and legitimacy for the ruling party by means of its ideology that can be passed from leader to leader. The cult of Reagan was set up as an attempt to fulfill this role, as well.

Provenance

Recieved from ProQuest

Rights holder

Alexander Armistead Bowe

File size

110 p.

File format

application/pdf

Language

en

Discipline

Political Science

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