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Lot #4023
Mao Zedong Historically Important Signed Book: Quotations from Chairman Mao (The Little Red Book) - Autographed for the Wife of Pakistan's Foreign Minister, with Photo Proof

Historic signed first English edition of Quotations from Chairman Mao, with photo proof—the 'Little Red Book' autographed for the wife of Pakistan's Foreign Minister, who aided in normalizing USA-China relations

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Estimate: $200000+
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Historic signed first English edition of Quotations from Chairman Mao, with photo proof—the 'Little Red Book' autographed for the wife of Pakistan's Foreign Minister, who aided in normalizing USA-China relations

Incredibly rare and historic signed book: Quotations from Chairman Mao. First English edition. Peking: Foreign Languages Press, 1966. Softcover bound in red vinyl covers with embossed title and star, 3.75 x 5.25, 312 pages. Signed in the border of the frontispiece portrait in fountain pen by Mao Zedong. Chairman Mao signed this book in October 1966 for the wife of Foreign Minister of Pakistan Sharifuddin Pirzada (1923–2017), who was the first statesman invited to visit the Chinese government after the beginning of the ‘Cultural Revolution’; the moment that Mao signed the book was captured on film. The foreign minister's name is inscribed on the first free end page in blue ballpoint, "Syed Sharifuddin Pirzada, Peking, 25th October 1966." Autographic condition: fine. Book condition: VG/None, with a bit of wrinkling to the bottom of the title page and some soiling to the bright red vinyl wrappers.

Foreign Minister Pirzada and his wife arrived in Peking on October 22, 1966, to conduct a friendly diplomatic visit—making him the first statesman to make an official visit to China after the beginning of the Cultural Revolution. The Peking Review of October 28th reported on the visit: 'Chairman Mao Tse-tung received Pakistan Foreign Minister Sayed Sharifuddin Pirzada and his wife on October 25, and had a cordial and friendly conversation with them...Foreign Minister Pirzada said that the friendship between Pakistan and China was based on the genuine and fundamental interests of the two countries and the two peoples. He pointed out that the policies of both countries provided an excellent basis for strengthening this friendship. Sino-Pakistan friendship and co-operation, he added, was a demand of our times and any attempt to interfere with it would never succeed. The Pakistan Foreign Minister thanked the Chinese Government and people for their support to the Kashmiri people's just struggle. He said that the Government and people of Pakistan would never forget the support and aid given by the Chinese Government and people when Pakistan met with aggression. He pointed out that China's support to Pakistan in fighting against aggression was a stabilizing factor in South Asia.' Accompanied by a photocopy of the article.

When Pirzada was elevated to Foreign Minister in 1966, The Guardian reported: 'Mr. Pirzada is expected to exert a wholesome influence...Pakistan will continue to maintain good relations with China...but in the coming months there is going to be an earnest effort to restore friendly relations with the United States without hurting Peking. Mr. Pirzada can be relied upon to forge a level-headed and balanced policy towards the 'two worlds.'' Pirzada was successful in those efforts, cultivating strong ties with both the United States and China as the two hostile nations began to consider rapprochement. Helping to close the communication gap between the two countries, Pakistan would play a pivotal role in organizing Henry Kissinger's secret visit to Beijing in 1971, followed by President Nixon's historic official trip to China in 1972—considered by many to be the greatest diplomatic achievement of the 20th century.

Widely known as Mao's 'Little Red Book,' the pocket-sized 'Mao Zhu Xi Yu Lu' [Quotations from Chairman Mao Tse-tung] was first printed in Chinese in 1964 and widely distributed during China's Cultural Revolution. The first English version was published in 1966 by the Communist Party's Foreign Languages Press, and versions into over thirty other languages soon followed. An icon of Red China and the Cultural Revolution, the Little Red Book's thirty-three chapters contain quotations from Mao's speeches and writings, organized by topic: the Communist Party, class and class struggle, socialism and communism, war and peace, imperialism, the People's Army, politics, patriotism, and culture are all touched upon in the famous work. Rarely found in autographed examples, this is one of just a handful to be offered at auction in the past few decades—and none have been bolstered by such exceptional provenance. A remarkable signed first edition of this historic and influential book, which helped to shape China's cultural and political paths in the 20th century.

Auction Info

  • Auction Title: Remarkable Rarities
  • Dates: #707 - Ended February 22, 2024

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