Thursday, January 20, 2011

2010 and the Cultural Revolution

I haven't had the time to post much lately, too busy working on a memoir. But the latest issue of Remembrance (in Chinese) has something worth noting.  As a New Year tradition, the magazine lists ten things that happened in the previous year related to the Cultural Revolution. Below are a few highlights from the 2010 list:

  • In January 2010, media reported that the Chongqing City government approved inclusion of the Red Guard Cemetery in the list of protected historical relics. This news brought lots of reporters to visit the Cemetery. (I've written about Chongqing's Red Guard Cemetery in a personal essay "Swimming with Mao.")
Left: Liu Yuan; Right: Mao Xinyu
  • On July 20, 2010, General Liu Yuan conferred the rank of Major General to Mao Xinyu.  This news caused a big stir in and outside China, because Mao Xinyu is Chairman Mao Zedong's grandson, while Liu Yuan is the son of Liu Shaoqi. Once China's President, Liu Shaoqi died miserably in 1969 under harsh treatment from Mao.  The Chinese internet dubbed that the recent conferring of rank between  descendants of the two bloody enemies was a long plotted "reconciliation" scheme.
  • In October 2010, Southern Weekend published a series of articles about Red Guards apologizing to their victims (teachers). The reports stirred up various reactions on the Chinese internet, including praise and criticism alike. There was an opinion that, those Red Guards who beat up their teachers were products of the teachers' teaching, thus the question "who are qualified to receive the apologies."  The arguments attracted broad attention.
(P.S. Perhaps the list should also include the UK Education Secretary Michael Gove's moronic analogy to China's Cultural Revolution.)

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