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This 1994 book examines the relationship between the Communist political elite and the largely anti-Communist intellectual elite during the decade of reform (1977-89). The author, who was a participant in these events, shows how the Deng Xiaoping regime precipitated a legitimacy crisis by encouraging economic reform while preventing political reform, and how the intellectual elite used this situation to increase its own power. The book also offers a theoretical model to explain how a political resistance movement could gain power in a nation that does not have a well-developed civil society. The concept of 'institutional parasitism' shows that rather than developing separate institutions, the anti-Communist intellectuals occupied state structures from which oppositional activity was carried out. The book will be of interest to both scholars of China and students of comparative Communism.