Most scholarship and popular writings about China's Cultural Revolution focuses on urban areas. They also tend to have a negative assessment of the Cultural Revolution's educational reforms and their impact on China's economic development. This book, a case study of a rural county in China's Shandong Province, provides important new evidence about the Cultural Revolution in China's rural areas. The educational reforms associated with the Cultural Revolution led to education expansion, curriculum reform, and change of management styles of rural school system. Many rural children were able to attend village primary school, joint village middle school and commune high schools free of charge. The book also reveals that there is a direct connection between economic development and the practical education rural children received during the Cultural Revolution years. The book demonstrates that the rural population benefited from some of the important public policies of the Cultural Revolution. In Jimo County, the production increased tremendously.
The book also argues that the Chinese government's negation of some Cultural Revolution public policies had some serious consequenc for rural education and economic development in the long run.