Go Back  FlyerTalk Forums > Destinations > Asia > China
Reload this Page >

Better see Mao's mummy while you can-Mao out of new history book

Better see Mao's mummy while you can-Mao out of new history book

Old Sep 1, 06, 4:34 pm
  #1  
In memoriam
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 4,020
Better see Mao's mummy while you can-Mao out of new history book

Today's New York Times has a feature about the "new" Chinese history which pretty much eliminates Mao. What's behind the change and should we rush to stand in line to see the Great Helmsman's embalmed body before it is too late? Enitre story is at http://www.nytimes.com/2006/09/01/wo...ef=todayspaper

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 country’s most prosperous schools have shelved the Marxist template that had dominated standard history texts since the 1950’s. The changes passed high-level scrutiny, the authors say, and are part of a broader effort to promote a more stable, less violent view of Chinese history that serves today’s economic and political goals.

Supporters say the overhaul enlivens mandatory history courses for junior and senior high school students and better prepares them for life in the real world. The old textbooks, not unlike the ruling Communist Party, changed relatively little in the last quarter-century of market-oriented economic reforms. They were glaringly out of sync with realities students face outside the classroom. But critics say the textbooks trade one political agenda for another.

They do not so much rewrite history as diminish it. The one-party state, having largely abandoned its official ideology, prefers people to think more about the future than the past.
biggestbopper is offline  
Old Sep 1, 06, 4:43 pm
  #2  
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Chapel Hill, NC - UA Nobody (sigh)/0.925MM, HHonors Diamond
Posts: 3,506
Wonder if Mao's portrait gets removed from Tian'amen Gate?

And what are they going to do with the huge amount of Mao-centric material in the 2nd floor display in the Military Museum of the Chinese People's Revolution? Place was crawling with Chinese students when we were there.

Mao won't go away easily. He's all over the place.
Chapel Hill Guy is offline  
Old Sep 1, 06, 7:41 pm
  #3  
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Macau, Hong Kong, Shanghai
Posts: 648
Originally Posted by Chapel Hill Guy
Wonder if Mao's portrait gets removed from Tian'amen Gate?

And what are they going to do with the huge amount of Mao-centric material in the 2nd floor display in the Military Museum of the Chinese People's Revolution? Place was crawling with Chinese students when we were there.

Mao won't go away easily. He's all over the place.
I would love to see him off all the banknotes. All about communism in China these days is the protection of the strong position of the cadres. Thats the only thing not discussable.
For the textbooks: They should rather teach them social behaviour in economics.
HKtraveller is offline  
Old Sep 1, 06, 8:43 pm
  #4  
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Chapel Hill, NC - UA Nobody (sigh)/0.925MM, HHonors Diamond
Posts: 3,506
As an aside, I believe this thread will be closed after 35 or fewer posts.
Chapel Hill Guy is offline  
Old Sep 2, 06, 3:34 am
  #5  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Shanghai
Posts: 30,523
Originally Posted by Chapel Hill Guy
As an aside, I believe this thread will be closed after 35 or fewer posts.
I feel guilty jumping into this discussion in light of our previous debate's sour ending, but I really like the article (btw, I'm not endorsing the NYT here; I just think think it was interesting) so I can't resist.

Anyway, I'm curious about the role governments around the world play in shaping their history curriculi. In addition to China, I know that Japan also uses a heavy hand.... and I'm quite sure that other countries are similar.

Personally, I like to think that my 11th grade history class was very light in the propaganda department (British textbook, lots of trips to the library to check primary sources, plenty of debate/discussion). But, I still suspect that Uncle Sam played a more dominant role in shaping the curriculum than I am aware.

In any case, I emerged from the process with some independent views and a skeptical attitude to boot. How about you guys?
moondog is offline  
Old Sep 3, 06, 8:34 pm
  #6  
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Charlotte
Programs: Delta ,
Posts: 131
mao

I stayed in line for 90 minutes to see Mao.
Mostly all Chinese in line.
They have booth where you buy plastic flowers for Mao.
You leave them near his body .
They pickup the flowers at the end of the day and resell them . It is very tacky.
He on every Chinese bill. The People love Mao.He's there hero! I don't think Mao will not be gone,maybe less prounced effect.
Blue Tiger is offline  
Old Sep 3, 06, 8:56 pm
  #7  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 4,681
Originally Posted by Blue Tiger
The People love Mao.He's there hero!
Not the people I've talked to. Most have told me they admire Deng Xiaoping much more than the Chairman.

One day Mao's picture will be taken down from Tiananmen but it will take a lot more than different textbooks in one Chinese city to make that change!
travelinmanS is offline  
Old Sep 3, 06, 9:33 pm
  #8  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Newport Beach, California, USA
Posts: 36,062
Originally Posted by travelinmanS
Not the people I've talked to. Most have told me they admire Deng Xiaoping much more than the Chairman.
Same here.
PTravel is offline  
Old Sep 4, 06, 11:43 pm
  #9  
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 124
Originally Posted by Blue Tiger
They have booth where you buy plastic flowers for Mao.
You leave them near his body .
They pickup the flowers at the end of the day and resell them . It is very tacky.
I think that's great. Recycle, no waste.
vash is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread