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Book Review: Red Roulette by Desmond Shum

An insider account of party corruption in China and of how businessmen managed to use the system to amass vast sums of money

Since 2021, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) General Secretary (GS) Xi Jinping has called on the People’s Republic of China (PRC) to achieve “common prosperity” (gongtong fuyu). Although Xi has used the phrase more than 65 times in his speeches in 2021, it first appeared in the People’s Daily on September 25, 1953, when the paper published a list of 65 approved slogans for the commemoration of the fourth anniversary of the PRC. It aims to narrow the wealth gap between the “rich few” and “common many” and addresses the income disparity, which has the potential to threaten the legitimacy of CCP rule.


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