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Where’s Mao? Chinese Revise History Books (NYT's warm and fuzzy new China)
New York Times ^
| Sept. 1 2006
| JOSEPH KAHN
Posted on 09/01/2006 9:40:11 AM PDT by VoodooEconomics
BEIJING, Aug. 31 When high school students in Shanghai crack their history textbooks this fall they may be in for a surprise. The new standard world history text drops wars, dynasties and Communist revolutions in favor of colorful tutorials on economics, technology, social customs and globalization.
Socialism has been reduced to a single, short chapter in the senior high school history course. Chinese Communism before the economic reform that began in 1979 is covered in a sentence. The text mentions Mao only once in a chapter on etiquette.
Nearly overnight the countrys most prosperous schools have shelved the Marxist template that had dominated standard history texts since the 1950s.
(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...
TOPICS: Culture/Society; Front Page News; Government; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: censorship; china; communistchina; erasure; mao; revisionism
Ok to get rid of MAO - great! But I suspect NYT trying to whitewash China - this while China attempts to play counter to US policy in middle east and WOT. hmmmm. Maybe I am paranoid - will look for more fuzzies on China in NYT of late ....
In a way this is a good sign. They know enough to be embarrassed of Mao. It shows that they know the future is away from collectivism.
On the other hand, countries that have gone through periods with thugs in charge like Stalin, Mao, Hitler, (including many former Warsaw Pack countries) should face their past and address it, not hide the past. Hiding the past will increase the possibility that they didn't learn a lesson from letting such a person have such power.
Uh, doesn't the fact that they're expurgating and manipulating the official history provide ample clue that they're still...communists?
"Uh, doesn't the fact that they're expurgating and manipulating the
official history provide ample clue that they're still...communists?"
And here is the book the Communist establishment fears more than The Bible:
Mao: The Unknown Story
by Jung Chang, Jon Halliday
I saw the authors on BookTV (CSpan2, weekends).
They had at least one aging academic/hippie/leftist protest that
the book was "unfair" to Mao and, oh, what a great man Mao had been (barf!).
The writers did a rough calculation of how many Chinese died of starvation
and deprivation in order to pay for the making of the Chinese nuclear bomb
(paid by selling rice/ag products that should have stayed in the country
to feed the citizens)
With it coming out in paperback, we should be carpet-bombing mainland
China with copies just in time for Christmas.
posted on 09/01/2006 10:03:00 AM PDT
But if you go carrying pictures of Chairman Mao
You ain't gonna make it with anyone anyhow
posted on 09/01/2006 10:04:48 AM PDT
NYT is simply reporting this inccident. I am glad that Chinese education is becoming less and less ideology oriented.
posted on 09/01/2006 11:01:11 AM PDT
To: VoodooEconomics; olderwiser; VOA; All
posted on 09/01/2006 12:04:02 PM PDT
(May you be in heaven a half hour before the devil knows that you're dead.)
Looks like a needed book. I'll definitely pick it up in paperback.
The title is pretty revealing--about the leftist media/academia in America.
Happens in America too. I spent more time learning about flappers and speakeasies then I did about any war or mass genocide.
posted on 09/01/2006 12:17:23 PM PDT
Yes. Here they fall all over themselves to promote the socialist vision, no state coersion needed.
But thank God in this country of ours, they do have to deal with the most important diversity: POLITICAL, whether it's the Conservative Republicans, talk radio, think tanks, the more conservative Churches/Denominations...
And last but not least, the 'Net and great places like...FreeRepublic.
I'm reading it, and while well researched generally, and totally believable, the seething personal hatred the authors had for Mao makes it easy to put the book down.
With Clinton, you know that at a cocktail party, you could have a drink with the guy and get along ok for a minute or two. Even among Mao's cronies, he never makes Mao seem like a real person.
I'm certain Mao was a vicious bastard, but they really don't translate that very believably.
posted on 09/01/2006 1:39:56 PM PDT
Sick Willie and his wrecking crew are trying to sanitize Willie's legacy. It can happen here, too.
posted on 09/01/2006 3:00:51 PM PDT
by Ole Okie
"Socialism has been reduced to a single, short chapter in the senior high school history course. Chinese Communism before the economic reform that began in 1979 is covered in a sentence. The text mentions Mao only once in a chapter on etiquette.
If true, this means that all these Chinese students would be getting less indoctrination than most of our own students are getting! Of course, even if this particular textbook has been pared down on commie agitprop it doesn't meant there aren't still plenty of other sources among teachers, etc. Still, it may be a hopeful sign that China will end up better than might be expected given their past 50+ years....
posted on 09/01/2006 3:03:51 PM PDT
(There are 3 kinds of lies: Lies, Damned Lies, and Mainstream Journalism)
I'm reading it, and while well researched generally, and totally believable,
the seething personal hatred the authors had for Mao makes it easy to put
the book down.
In my inexpert opinion, it's not in the first rank of biographies done
BUT...what turned my head is the thought that "what if this book is even
just 50% true?" If their estimates of deaths caused by Mao
(and/or his policies) are double the actual numbers...
and only half of the unflattering stories are true, Mao still comes off
as a monster and a monumental jerk in interpersonal actions.
And that's probably something you'd not hear at a prestigious
university. More likely you'd hear that Mao was the George Washington
of modern China.
As for the seething hatred of the authors, the lady that is the lead
author lived through the later part of Mao's reign. Like some of the
Chinese I met in graduate school...she might have a justifiable grudge,
but not the linguistic ability in English to get her point across
without sounding shrill.
posted on 09/01/2006 3:14:20 PM PDT
a monumental jerk in interpersonal actions
Exactly. But, I am afraid that Mao is just the Chinese cultural incarnation of the power-hungry sociopaths we call politicians!
His misogynous and murderous bent just made him more 'effective' and useful to Stalin.
I guess that's another reason I have such trouble reading that book.....I'm afraid it's not just applicable Mao, but to some, let's say, in US govt and in pantsuits we know today.
posted on 09/01/2006 4:08:38 PM PDT
The book by Halliday and Chang is stupendous. I just finished it. It is very detailed and takes advantage of Soviet intelligence and diplomatic achieves that were declassified in the last ten years. The authors also traveled around China and located various personalities still living who knew Mao at various stages of his life. One tidbit, verified by numerous sources and eyewitnesses, is that Mao did not march on the "Long March" of the Red Army but was carried in a litter--as were most party officials--by Red Army soldiers. The book paints Mao as he was and should be remembered: a soulless, criminal psychopath.
posted on 09/01/2006 5:34:31 PM PDT
by Brad from Tennessee
(Anything a politician gives you he has first stolen from you)
Now the Japanese are to blame for cancer, AIDS, and forced abortions!
posted on 09/01/2006 8:37:41 PM PDT
((The struggle continues))
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