communism

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Simple gifts: celibacy and communism

Elijah Lim reflects on the story of American Shakerism: though celibacy and communism were the two cornerstones upon which the Shaker communes were founded, they were what eventually led to their decline.

Real Estate

The secret pact forged in Xiaogang

Prior to 1978 in China, communal farmland was assigned to individuals to work for the government. Farmers gave anything that they produced from their land to the government, which then distributed the crops out to the people. Agricultural land was less productive in 1978 than it had been in 1949, when the communists took over. This was because the farmers did not have any incentive to produce more than the minimum; any extra work would result in the same food rations from the government.

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