Chinese Revolution Sources Questions

1) In the picture 'The trial of a landlord before a peoples' court in 1953' we can see a man-the landlord, kneeling down before a peoples' court. He is tied p with a soldier there to keep watch, to guard the landlord. On the bench we can see men that are the judges and the jury, they will not and take into account the landlords defence statement. They will account both stories and eventually come to a conclusion, which will most probably be to sentence the landlord to death. This was what occurred everyday and many innocent landlords were accused.  

The people encouraged death to the landlords but went through the procedure of taking a trial through a court so that other landlords think justice will be done. This is said in source 26- "Everyday bought dozens of public trials and the people were encouraged to watch. Trials of peoples' courts were broadcast over loudspeakers in public as the crowds shouted for death" Another extract from source 26 explaining what happened to the landlords- "The most shot in one day was 199, but in the countryside many, many more were put to knife, bullet and garrot" 2) Source 21 explains why, peasants acted this way towards the landlords.

"Evil gentry, lawless landlords have themselves driven the peasants to this. For ages they have used their power to tyrannise over the peasants and trample them underfoot, that is why the peasants have reacted so strongly… " This says that the peasants have a right to be angry with the landlords for the way they were treated. The source also tells us that the peasants have their facts before causing all this to happen, but it doesn't say what the landlords actually did, therefore it is not an adequate justification, it doesn't give a satisfactory reason for why the peasants acted the way they did.

3) Source 21 gives a different account of the treatment of the anti-communists from source 26, because source 21 explains it from the angle of a person AGAINST the way the landlords treated the peasants. Whereas source 26 gives the viewpoint of a landlord saying what happened to them when the trails and peoples courts were held and how the punishment was severe, so it seems he is defending the landlords. The other source, source 21, seems to say that he peasants are right in attacking the landlords for what they have done to them.

4) These sources might not be reliable enough for historians in examining the Communist's treatment of their opponents because the person who quoted the source might be biased therefore the actual knowledge and information in the source could be a biased view of what happened. In both sources the points are of opposites, one of the Communist and one of the opponents, so both are likely to be defending their own side, resulting in bias.