Analysis Of Xu Sanguan's 'Chronicle Of A Blood Merchant'

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The national flag of China depicts four small stars surrounding a large central star amongst a red background. Adopted in 1949, the “Five-Star Red Flag” represented a new wave of thinking in China that promoted communism. Mao Zedong, the founder of The People’s Republic of China, assumed power of China through support of peasants in the hopes of creating a country that was united. Mao insisted that a Cultural Revolution needed a nationwide class struggle in order to create an equal society. Although there were prosperous times in the beginning of the Revolution eventually millions of people died from starvation or being overworked. Most who died were peasants and lower-working class. In “Chronicle of a Blood Merchant” by Yu Hua, Xu Sanguan …show more content…
Although the famine was not intentional by the Cultural Revolution, it was used as a tool by the Chinese government to embrace the destruction of the past. The famine caused great suffering to millions of people in China, it forced people to forget about the past and be concerned about the present. When Xu Sanguan adds sugar to his gruel it shows the effects the famine has had on the younger generation when he thinks, "When is this ever going to end? Its been hard on the little brats. They don’t even remember what its like to eat sweets, and when they finally got something sweet, they don 't even recognize the taste of sugar anymore"(Hua 120). By proposing the question of “when is this ever going to end” Xu Sanguan displays his hopelessness. As rights and freedoms were taken away, the people of China were too weak physically and mentally to fight back. The author uses sugar as a representation of the past because Xu Sanguan’s children no longer remember the sweet joys of life before the Revolution. The youth of China have been conditioned into Mao’s communal thought of being concerned for the present and future of China. The tragedy that has overtaken their lives has made them forget the pleasures and freedoms they had in the past. Because Xu Sanguan’s children do not remember life without suffering they are unable to fight for a better life; instead, they become complacent and accept any dictatorship the government places on them without knowing it is

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