Hybrid vigor or hybrid weakness? Xiamen University Marxism Institute Professor Pang Hu compares the sinicization of Marxism from the West via Russia through continual adjustment through practice in its new Chinese environment with the vitiation of once vigorous western brought in by Sun Yat-sen which were then weakened by their re-interpretation according to China’s traditional thought aka Confucianism.
I think of Confucianism as a poorly defined grab bag of traditional Chinese thought. My Chengdu writer friend Yin Shuping told me that every dynasty starts (as usurpers of the previous dynasty) out hating Confucius but a generation or two celebrate Confucius since by then they see themselves as the avatars of Eternal China. Every dynasty invents its own iteration of Confucius to suit its predilication, Yin added. The PRC seems have done the same thing: the Communist Party started out denouncing Confucius. During the Cultural Revolution there was a big campaign to criticize Confucius and his next-generation-on partner in thought crimes Mencius (with Lin Biao thrown in for good measure). See for example (via Google Translate) “The entire process of the Red Guards destroying the former residence of Confucius in Qufu during the Cultural Revolution“.
Mao Zedong and Confucius: A Troubled Relationship
Feng Tianle, then a PhD candidate at Taiwan’s National Chengchi University, in his article “Mao’s Changing Evaluations of Confucius Changed” discussed changing views of Confucius during the revolution and after 1949:
Throughout his life, Mao Zedong’s evaluation of Confucius changed from time to time. In a long and complicated process, Mao ran the whole gamut from reverence to acceptance with reservations to total rejection. In his early years, Mao was deeply educated in traditional Chinese culture, well-versed in the Confucian classics, regarded Confucius as a saint, worshipped him, and wished to become a sage just like Confucius in order to move people’s hearts. The New Culture Movement had an unprecedented impact on traditional culture. Hu Shih, Chen Duxiu, Li Dazhao and other new intellectuals brought many Western ideas to China. This made Mao more sceptical about Confucius.
China was in great peril, so, Mao, like many others, tried to discover a say to say China and its people. He had to re-evaluate traditional Chinese culture represented by Confucianism. On the one hand, he inherited and developed Confucius’ spirit of seeking truth from facts and educational ideas because, in his view, these cultural heritages contained useful values. On the other hand, after joining the Communist Party and the revolution, he had to draw a clear line between himself and the Kuomintang based on the concept of “whatever the enemy opposes, we must support; whatever the enemy supports, we must oppose.” and so Mao Zedong criticized the moral theories of Confucius.
After the founding of the People’s Republic of China in 1949, in order to maintain his image and power as a revolutionary leader, Mao needed to use the philosophy of struggle to eradicate opposition and hostile forces. At the same time, he also needed to use the philosophy of struggle to deliberately create enemies of the people in oder to divert the people’s discontent caused by the mistakes in governance (e.g., the Great Leap Forward).
Prior to the Cultural Revolution, Mao’s evaluation of Confucius was mixed, sometimes even contradictory, but in general more positive than negative. “During the Cultural Revolution, total rejected of Confucius was mainly due to political necessity. However, it would be too simple to say that Mao’s evaluation of Confucius changed completely out of political necessity. Mao was also a romantic who wanted China to be free from traditional culture and to dream of a China in which “all 600 million Chinese would all be as great as the founding emperors Yao and Shun”. In his view, the traditional cultural norms represented by Confucius blocked China’s modernization, and that only by breaking the shackles of traditional norms could China escape from its poverty and backwardness. “During the Cultural Revolution, the Red Guards “Smashed the Four Olds” and “established the Four New Things”, was no doubt where he ended up by taking this to extremes. Mao Zedong benefited from traditional culture, but he caused indelible damage to it, which is not only his personal tragedy, but also the tragedy of the whole Chinese nation.
Pang Hu’s Article Published by Top Chinese Communist Party Center for Studying Sinicization of Marxism and Xi Jinping Thought
Pang Hu’s article was published in Marxism and Reality [马克思主义●与现实] in 2015. Marxism and Reality is an official publication of the China Communist Party Central Committee’s Institute of Party History and Documentation of the Central Committee, the most important center for the Chinese Communist Party research on Marxism. According to the Institute’s website
“The Central Institute of Party History and Literature is mainly responsible for researching the basic theory of Marxism, Marxism Chineseization and its main representatives, studying Xi Jinping’s Socialist Thought with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, researching the history of the Communist Party of China, editing and compiling important documents of classic Marxist writers, important documents of the Party and the state, and writings of major leaders, and collecting and organizing important Party history documents and materials.”
After the Cultural Revolution subsided and the Party reflected on its near-death experience, there was a Confucian revival to some extent in Mainland China in communication with the Chinese diaspora in Taiwan, Hong Kong, the United States and elsewhere. See the Wikipedia article New Confucianism.
Yu Dan’s book and her Chinese Central Television Series about Confucius and his philosophy were popular during the 2010’s although she has inevitably been criticized for being too superficial and too popular. An example you could read in this machine translation of a critical review of Yu Dan’s book found on the Baidu online encyclopedia. Confucius became an emblem for China’s campaign to acquire more “soft power”: many institutes named for Confucius for the study of Chinese culture were implanted in universities worldwide. (Some of these institutes have been criticized for undue political influence. I took Chinese literature courses in Chinese taught by a PRC PhD all at the expense of Chinese taxpayers. The teachers were good and open with us even on some gray and dark area topics. Just my experience and I don’t think I am really a running dog!)
Many books and articles about the Confucian revival in the PRC you can find online.
Michael Shuman, author of Confucius and the World He Created wrote in a 2015 article “Why a Confucian revival and the Internet could have unexpected consequences for China“
What Beijing is attempting to create today is not a Confucian state but something more like “authoritarianism with Chinese characteristics.” Though Xi Jinping has been advocating that schools teach the Chinese classics, we’re still far from a true revival of Confucian education on a wide scale. Unless the Confucian campaign goes beyond mere slogans and exhortations, it’s hard to imagine Confucius becoming a pillar of a new, Communist-led empire.
Beijing’s Communists are also facing a vastly changed world than their predecessors. During the dynastic period, Chinese civilization had no real challenges from the outside. Invaders like the Mongols were absorbed into Confucian culture. Now Chinese are exposed to all sorts of influences from the Internet, foreign movies and TV programs, and overseas travel and education. That has changed their expectations about government and their ideas on how society should function. Confucius has (and should have) a place as part of this global culture, but that doesn’t mean Beijing’s leaders can impose their own version of a Confucian orthodoxy and shut out unwanted ideas from the rest of the world.
In fact, Confucius could end up mixing with those foreign ideals and generating political tumult. By reintroducing Confucius, the party is encouraging ordinary Chinese to revisit Confucius’s teachings on their own. Confucian schools have opened and book clubs have formed. The Confucius they discover in those pages may not be the Confucius of Xi Jinping, but the Confucius of high moral principles who stood up to the rulers of his day. China’s citizens may compare their leaders today against Confucius’s lofty standards, and find them wanting.
Shuman’s may have been prescient or his friends in Beijing had given him a call. Compare Shuman’s 2015 article views with the final paragraph in Pang Hu’s 2015 article:
Marx, in his review of Hegel’s view that “historical events and persons can be said to have appeared twice”, pointed out that “he forgot to add this: the first time it appears as a tragedy, the second time as a comedy.” Imitation and repetition, in any form, will become a laughing stock of history. The history of the successes and failures of the Communist Party and the Kuomintang has taught us a simple but profound truth: the power of ideology can be weak or it can be infinite. The key is to see whether one has found a realistic path forward based on practice. Any attempt to create a Chinese miracle by Confucianizing Marxism is certainly just another baseless fantasy.
Pang Hu in “The Confucianization of Sun Yat-sen’s Three People’s Principles Ideology and the Sinicization of Marxism — A Reflection Based on a Comparison of Their Intellectual Histories and Their Respective Paths Towards Realization” below.
Pang, writing in an official PRC Marxism journal, does seem worried about the Confucian onslaught. Perhaps Confucius is more of a threat to PRC ideological security than we know.
We Learn and Re-interpret the New According to What We Know
In graduate school at Penn, I read several ancient Chinese medical texts such as the “Yellow Emperor’s Inner Canon of Medicine” together, as is customary, with commentaries written by Chinese experts of many dynasties. I was always amazed at how radically different the commentataries could be from one dynasty to another. The arrival of Buddhism in China changed understanding of the by then old texts, the Neo-Confucianism of the Song led to a different interpretation. By the late 19th century Chinese physicians were trying to interpret the ancient texts in the light of the new medical knowledge arriving from the West looking for a physical substratum for the phenomena discussed in the ancient texts. A difference in context. A top Chinese scholar was asked to give his opinion on which of two differing opinions on the interpretation of an ancient text was correct. He studied the text overnight and reported back the next day, “I have found five different ways to interpret this ancient text and they are all correct!” We lose a lot when we lose the context of the times. Another time is another country. Perhaps that is what General Secretary Xi is reminding us when he talks about his revision of Deng Xiaoping theory for the new era. New eras keep on coming.
New wine in old bottles. On one of my trips back to the US, a United Airlines flight attendant told me that during Beijing stops he lived near a man who kept great numbers of old beer bottles in his yard. Yes, he kept filling up the old beer bottles with new beer and then selling them. The spirit of entpreneurship lives.
I though of this when I read in Pang Hu’s article about the sinicization of Marxism and the Confucianization of Sun Yat-sen’s Three People’s Principles. When something new comes along, we try to fit it into the old framework. Sometimes it doesn’t fit but we make it fit anyways. Or perhaps we do need to change but put new wine into old bottles and pretend that we didn’t do that. Chinese government and the Communist Party, like all governments and political parties, changes it positions more than it likes to admit. What they stop saying rather than what they say can be more significant.
I just read about Leon Festinger‘s work on how people react to discrediting of beliefs when there is social pressure to maintain them. Perhaps relevant. A difficult situation might be made even more so when social pressure is doubled by political pressure.
Hard work for some think tank scholars twisting and trimming the old ideologies to fit specifications. The social sciences academices at the central, provincial and local levels, along with the Party schools, in addition to doing conventional academic work, also do some ideological work for the Party. They might launch ideological trial balloons that might be blown up bigger or deflated according to current necessities. When I worked at the U.S. Consulate in Chengdu, I had lunch with a professor who was retiring from the Sichuan Academy of Social Sciences. The retiried professor confessed to me that he really wasn’t a scholar. My real job, he told me, was “to monitor the idedology of the other academics there.”
The Confucianization of Sun Yat-sen’s Three People’s Principles Ideology and the Sinicization of Marxism — A Reflection Based on a Comparison of Their Intellectual Histories and Their Respective Paths Towards Realization
by Pang Hu
[Abstract] As the two most influential mainstream ideologies in modern China, the Three People’s Principles and Marxism have objectively similar channels of introduction and As the two most influential ideologies in modern China, the Three People’s Principles and Marxism have objectively similar channels of introduction and the same background of derivation, and together contributed to the exaltation of “Chinese” consciousness. There is however a substantial difference between Confucianism and the realistic interpretation of the “Chinese” state of affairs, and consequently between “knowledge” and “action,” between political party and nation, between transforming the masses and popularization, and between the old order and New China. The Confucianization of The Three People’s Principles reveals obvious ethical overtones, narrow perspective, elitist bias and do-nothing passivity. Thus in the end the KMT could not escape defeat.
In contrast, Marxism’s Chineseization was based on revolutionary practice, focused on the national cause, and was deeply rooted in the people. Sinicized Marxism found a realistic path of development in the continuous promotion of China’s transformation. In the new era, it will only be by transcending the entanglements of Confucianism and adhering to the objective nature of realistic practice that we will be able to continue to make new leaps forward in the theory and practice of Sinicization of Marxism.
[KEYWORDS] Confucianization of the Three People’s Principles, Sinicization of Marxism, Marxism and the path of realization
In recent years, the concept of “Confucianization” has been getting much more attention and thinking about how we think about and put into practice “sinicization” has become a widely discussed topic. and the cognition and practice of “Chinese-ization” have been on the rise. Which perspectives should be drawn on to interpret “China”? What is the relationship between “Confucianization” and “Sinicization”? The historical comparison of the Confucianization of the Three People’s Principles ideology and the sinicization of Marxism will hopefully reveal the first clues.
I. The Radicalization of “Chinese” Consciousness under External Influences
The invasion of China by the western powers in the In modern times made clear to knowledgeable Chinese the contrast between Chinese and Western strength, the great advantages of western culture. This brought a determination to learn from the West. Amidst the clamor of that era, the ideologies of the Three People’s Principles [sanminzhuyi] and of Marxism entered China. Sun Yat-sen believed that the main reason for the strength of Europe and America was the guidance of “three great principles”: “The evolution of Europe and the United States is guided by three great principles: nationalism, civil rights, and people’s livelihood. These three doctrines have enabled the Western countries to “make people wise, materially rich and more than a thousand years of progress in a century.”
Therefore, the Chinese people should learn from them and learn how to apply them, “so that the most appropriate methods of governance can be adapted to our people”. ① In 1905, the Tongmenghui was founded and the Three Principles of the People were adopted as the guiding ideology of the Tongmenghui. Thus the Three People’s Principles first came to Chinese people’s attention as the guiding ideology of the Tongmenghui. At this time, Marxist doctrines were also coming into China in a piecemeal fashion but it was either treated as an incidental component of bourgeois doctrine, or as “an ideology not suitable for China” 2 and did not receive widespread attention from the Chinese people.
* This paper is the result of the Innovation Project of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, “A General History of the Sinicization of Marxism”, and the project of Xiamen University, “Theoretical and Practical Research on China’s Development Path”.
[Footnotes to page 198]
(1) Sun Yat-sen: “Inaugural Address”, in Minbao, October 20, 1905. ② Deng Shi: “On Socialism”, in Zheng Yi Tongbao, No. 2, February 27, 1903.
The outbreak of World War I had a big impact on Chinese thinking. First, the victory of the October Revolution in Russia transformed Marxism from the original “doctrine of the future” into a realistic model embodying true ideals for national salvation and also led directly to the birth of a Marxist political party — the Communist Party of China. Secondly, a new intellectual faction arose in Europe and the United States to downplay the “West” and promote the “East ” also speedily arrived in China. The tragedy of the First World War and its aftermath destroyed the self-confidence of Westerners, who began to “lose faith in the power of reason to solve the problems of human society, in the principle of freedom of the individual, and in parliamentary democracy.”(1) There came a tendency to see “Western culture as merely materialistic with many spiritual defects. This view that the first world war revealed the bankruptcy of western civilization became widespread along with the view that eastern culture was more sound.” (2)
This trend of thinking was reflected in the writings of students who returned to China or in the notes on classes given by Westerners who visited China to give lectures. All these things made a deep impression on Chinese society. In Hu Shih’s 1926 article “Our Attitude Toward Modern Western Culture,” [我们对于西洋近代文明的态度 ] he wrote: “…we hear from time to time that Western scholars worship the spiritual culture of the East. This kind of argument, which reflects only a temporary morbid psychology, has encouraged the tendency of the eastern peoples to exaggerate their greatness. This has fanned the arrogance of the traditional forces in the East.” (3)
Confronted by these changes, the two camps of The Three People’s Principles (Sanminzhuyi) and Marxism reacted in complex ways that were both similar and different. The similarities are mainly manifested in the fact that both political parties, the Communist Party and the Kuomintang became more concerned with Marxism, and socialism in general, and the Communists became the main force propagating Marxism. Meanwhile, Sun Yat-sen and other Kuomintang members also regarded socialism as a “good friend” of the Three People’s Principles. They created the first period of KMT-Communist Party cooperation during the revolutionary era.
At the same time, the two major parties has also achieved a clearer understanding of the shortcomings of Western civilization, and both expressed expressed their principled position of opposing blind Westernization and stressing the importance to China’s specific national conditions: “If we were to blindly follow the West, this would be very harmful to the national economy and to the livelihood of our country’s people. …… If we do not make domestic adjustment to worldwide trends according to the specific situation of our own society then conditions in our country will deteriorate and the nation will be imperiled.” (4) If we want to do our part in the present world, of course, then we must limit our scope to what applies to ‘China’.
However, if we go back to the substance, we will find that there is still a fundamental difference between how the two sides, the KMT and the Communist Party, viewed the changes mentioned above. In their approach to Marxism, the Communists believed that Marxism belonged to neither Eastern nor a Western civilization but was in fact a “third civilization,” i.e., a “Russian civilization that “fuses the characteristics of both European and Asian civilization” and represents a new trend in world development. It is a “universal truth” shared by all mankind, and can certainly be applied to China. Nationalists like Sun Yat-sen interpreted Marxism in terms of traditional Chinese culture and came to the conclusion that Marxism could be applied to China. They concluded that “there is nothing new in Marxism. Marxism has nothing new to offer, as the Chinese classical texts stated over two thousand years ago.” This assertion, on the one hand, illustrates that the Kuomintang did not understand what New Democracy was and on the other reflected their complex feeling about the completely new phenomenon of Marxism, a phenomenon to which they were unable to adjust yet were obliged to confront.
They could only turn to the old culture to find a rational basis, showing their clear traditional orientation. This orientation was even more pronounced in their understanding of “Chinese” national conditions.
“After World War I, although the awareness of “China” in both the Communist Party and the Chinese Party had been greatly enhanced, what exactly were they to understand by”China “? What are the manifestations of “China”? What are the symbols of “China”? They had not achieved consensus on these questions. In Sun’s view, only traditional culture could be the basis for China’s development because only traditional culture could “keep up” with foreign culture in today’s China. Therefore “we must maintain the independence of our nation, promote our own culture, absorb the cultures of the world and expand them, so as to be on a par with other nations”.
At this time, he even reinterpreted the Three People’s Principles which had originally imported from Europe and America as coming from three major sources, namely: “Some of these principles are ideas inherent in our own national culture while others followed from the doctrines and deeds of Europe and developed by us” (8), and giving traditional Chinese cultural sources pride of place. The Three People’s Principles of our generation first originated from Mencius and then from the theories of Cheng Yichuan. The traditionalist tendency had already become clear. If, in Sun Yat-sen’s case, tradition was only seen as one of the sources of the Three People’s Principles, then, under Chiang Kai-shek, the Three People’s Principles became the embodiment of Confucian tradition. Chiang Kai-shek declared: “The Three People’s Principles are the crystallization of China’s inherent moral culture” and that Chinese moral “had handed down from Yao, Shun, Yu, Tang, Wen, Wu, and Zhou to Confucius, but then that line of descent was severed. The Leader [zongli normally translated as premier, referring to Sun Yat-sen as the founder and leader of the Tongmenghui, a political party precursor to the KMT] inherited this moral tradition. (10) Dai Jitao [Translator’s note: journalist and CKS’ personal secretary] also promoted that idea stating that “the Leader’s system of thought did not come from the West, but was an inheritance from China’s own culture” and that
[Footnotes for page 199]
① [Marvin] Perry, a US writer. History of Western Civilization, translated by Hu Wanli and others, The Commercial Press, 1993, p. 370. (1993), p. 370. ② “Reflections on Rabindranath Tagore’s Visit to China”, in The Declaration, April 14, 1924. ③ Ge Maochun and Li Xingzhi, eds. The Chinese philosophical thought of Hu Shih, edited by Ge Maochun and Li Xingzhi, 1981, p. 306. ④ Sun Yat-sen: Selected Works of Sun Yat-sen, People’s Publishing House, 1981, p. 764. ⑤ The Early Manuscripts of Mao Zedong Editorial Group of the Central Literature Research Office of the Communist Party of China and the Hunan Provincial Committee of the Communist Party of China The Early Manuscripts of Mao Zedong, Hunan Publishing House, 1990, p. 474. ⑥ Li Dazhao: The Collected Works of Li Dazhao, People’s Publishing House, 1984, p. 575. ⑦ Wu Xiangxiang: Biography of Mr. Sun Yixian, Far Eastern Book Company, 1984, p. 1509. ⑧ Sun Yat-sen: The Complete Works of Sun Yat-sen, vol. 7, China Books, 1985, p. 60. ⑨ Dr. Sun Yat-sen: The Complete Works of Dr. Sun Yat-sen, vol. 9, China Books, 1986, p. 532. (10) Liu Chuan, Gao Jun et al. Selected Writings on the History of Chinese Political Thought”, Volume 1, Sichuan Renmin Chubanshe, 1983 p. 592 (11) Liu Chuan, Dai Jitao: “Outline of the Founding of the Republic of China From the Manuscripts of Sun Yat-sen”, in The Chronicle of the History of the Republic of China by Liu Chuan, Gao Jun et al. Selected Writings on the History of Chinese Political Thought”, Volume 1, Sichuan Renmin Chubanshe, 1983 p. 592 (12) The editorial committee of the “Chronicle of the History of the Republic of China”: “Chronicle of the History of the Republic of China (Preliminary Draft) (1924) January to June, 1983 edition, p. 790.
“The basic ideas of the Teacher originated entirely from the Chinese orthodoxy of the Middle Way. The Teacher is the greatest sage transmitting China’s traditional moral culture since Confucius.” (1) In the Confucian rituals held in various places, statement like “the relationship between the doctrine of Confucius and the thought of the Leader can be seen as the former illuminating the latter” were often to be heard. In this way, Sun Yat-sen became the successor of Confucianism, and the Three Principles of Democracy were interpreted according to Confucianism. The Three Principles of Confucianism were also interpreted by Confucianism and lost their original meaning. From a historical perspective, similar statements were made by the Communists, for example, in 1916, Chen Duxiu argued that “Confucianism calls for the equal distribution of property and the restriction of land ownership. This is a precedent for socialism. (2) On the eve of the war, Chen Boda, the founder of the New Enlightenment Movement, also called on the cultural community to be “the inheritors of Chinese culture and the traditions of Eastern culture. (3), and so forth. However, these statements did not become the mainstream of thought and they soon revised their statements. They did not attract much attention and did not affect their practice, so they can only be regarded as individual misinterpretations in the process of understanding “Sinicization”.
The principal early representatives of the Communist Party all personally participated in the May Fourth Movement. Some were leading figures of the movement, so it would have been difficult for them to adopt a worshipful attitude towards Confucius. According to Chen Duxiu, Marx himself attached great importance to the study of practical matters. As a follower of Marxism, he should also “study learning in the spirit of Marx’s practical research” and “study his own work in the spirit of Marx’s practical research”. If they study only his doctrine, then the spirit of Marx’s practical research is completely lost, and they are no more than Marxist scholars. ④
The theory of “national conditions” was more explicitly put forward by Li Dazhao, who argued that “national conditions must be about conditions in our own country,” and that “to seek to understand our national conditions from outsiders is something that would end with great regrets.” The state of the nation cannot be confined to history, and “I think that the national conditions of the present are more important than those of the past” (5); national conditions are not fixed and unchanging. The national situation is not fixed, but “depends on the situation of each place and time, and we should seek the one that is suitable for it.
The slogan of “A Practical Movement That Applies Theory to Actual Conditions” [“本着主义作实际的运动”] was also proposed. By combining Marxism with the realities of the country, Marxism finally transcended the entanglements of Confucianism and embarked on the journey of true sinicization.
II. The Divergent Paths of the Confucianization of The Three People’s Principles and the Sinicization of Marxism
Differences in their understandings of “China” inevitably brought differences at the operational level. Specifically, the divergent paths of the two are mainly manifested in the following aspects:
1. “Knowing” and “doing”
Initially, foreign doctrines were introduced into China as a kind of truth that could be employed to serve national salvation. The problem of convergence of ways of going back and forth between “knowledge” and “action” was inevitable. As early as the Spring and Autumn Period, Confucianism put forward the idea that “it is not difficult to know, but difficult to do” (Shang Shu, chapter “Lunming Zhong) 《尚书·说命中》 The simple concept that action is more important than knowledge was proposed. During the Song and Ming dynasties, thinking around the concepts of knowledge and action put an exaggerated stress one’s temperament and good conscience: Wang Yangming, setting out from the position of mind-only thinking that “there is nothing outside the mind and there is no reason outside the mind,” proposed the concept of “knowledge and action proposed that “where the knowledge is true and solid then this is action” and “where a thought becomes active, this is action.” (Chuanlu, xia)《传习录·下》
Chiang Kai-shek claimed to have “benefited from Wang Yangming’s philosophy of ‘the unity of knowledge and action’ (7) and regarded moral and spiritual cultivation as the logical starting point for realizing the Three People’s Principles. In his view, “the Three People’s Principles emerged from the traditional values of benevolence, righteousness, and morality. (8) “This is the path of revolution, the path of benevolence and the path of kindness. Therefore, in order to realize the Three Principles of the People, we must “restore our own traditional ethics and to develop them further. Most important of all is to promote our people’s traditional virtues of stress on propriety and love of righteousness, honesty, and sense of shame. These are the manifestation of the four social bonds and the eight virtues. “(9)
The New Life Movement, which was launched in the 1930s, was also clearly positioned by Chiang Kai-shek as “a movement to restore national virtues in order to bring about national rejuvenation. Its main purpose was to change people’s minds and restore the moral dogma that had been the foundation of China since ancient times: the four social bonds of propriety, righteousness and sense of shame. In action these are manifested by loyalty, filial piety, benevolence and love.” (10) In this way, the Three People’s Principles were given a clear ethical coloring. Putting this doctrine into practice depended mainly on inner saintly efforts to cultivate personal virtue characterized by “I must examine my conscience three times a day”.
[Footnotes to page 200]
① Dai Jitao: The Philosophical Foundations of Sun Wunism, Minzhi Shuppan 1927, p. 65 ② Chen Duxiu: “New Youth”, in New Youth, vol. 2, no. 1, September 1, 1916. September 1, 1916. ③ Chen Boda: On the Cultural Front: A Sequel to The Quest for Truth, Life Books, 1939, p. 90. 1939, p. 90. ④ Chen Duxiu: “The Two Great Spirits of Marx”, in Guang Dong Qun Bao, May 23, 1922. Li Dazhao ⑤ Li Dazhao: The Collected Works of Li Dazhao, vol. 1, p. 113. ⑥ Li Dazhao: The Collected Works of Li Dazhao, second volume, People’s Publishing House, 1984, pp. 376, 35. ⑦ The Complete Works of the Former President Chiang Kai-shek, edited by Zhang Qiyun, China Culture University Press, 1984, p. 1535. ⑧ The Former President Chiang Kai-shek’s Thoughts and Speeches, vol. 10, (Taipei) Central Cultural Heritage Supply Company, 1984, p. 449. ⑨ The Complete Works of the Former President Chiang Kai-shek, edited by Zhang Qi Yun, pp. 4169, 161. (10) Chiang Kai-shek, “The Fourth Anniversary of the New Life Movement,” in Revolutionary Literature, 68th series (I), p. 62.
On this topic, Liu Shaoqi [Note in “How to Be a Good Communist”. 1939] pointed out that it was impossible for an abstract good heart to change reality. He wrote, “Communists have the historically unprecedented ‘critical task’ of transforming the world. Therefore personal cultivation is necessary, but it must be “training and cultivation in the revolutionary struggle”. [“共产党员是要担负历史上空前未有的改造世界的“大任”的，所以更必须注意在革命斗争中的锻炼和修养.”] In the revolutionary struggle of the masses, in all kinds of situations, amidst hardships and difficulties, we must train ourselves, sum up what we have learned, work harder at cultivating ourselves, improve our thinking, and not to lose our ability to recognize novel elements in our situation.“(1) After the theoretical attempts of the May Fourth Movement, Chen Duxiu and Li Dazhao also regained their materialist position and put forward the idea that “only objective material causes can affect the transformation of society, explain history, and determine our outlook on the world.”(2) and “we do not seek the cause of it in the power of minds and hearts, but in the power of material things” (3). [Trl note see ref
On this basis, in 1937, Mao Zedong proposed in his essay “On Practice” that “All genuine knowledge originates in direct experience.”(4), [ sic — from “On New Democracy”:] “Only the revolutionary practice of tens of millions of people can be the measure for testing the truth ” (5) and [from the last paragraph of “On Practice”: ] In the dialectical materialist view “Practice, knowledge, again practice, and again knowledge. This form repeats itself in endless cycles…” (6), concludes that knowing and practice constitute “a concrete and historical unity” [Translator’s Note: full quote from last sentence of third to last paragraph of “On Practice” “Our conclusion is the concrete, historical unity of the subjective and the objective, of theory and practice, of knowing and doing, and we are opposed to all erroneous ideologies, whether “Left” or Right, which depart from concrete history.“] .
This is both an innovative answer to the long-standing debate between knowledge and practice in Confucianism, as well as a scientific answer to Marxism’s road to sinicization. The Chinese Communists, through the trials and tribulations of long-term struggle found the revolutionary road of encircling the city, constantly testing and promoting the new developments of Marxism.
2. The Concerns of a Political Party Concern and its Vision for the Nation
In modern times, along with the rise of party politics, political parties have become an important factor in Chinese society. The relationship between ideology and political party has also played a key role in the sinicization process. In the case of the Three People’s Principles itself, it was “one ideology” but it was in fact a system of three “ideologies”. Although it pandered to many of the ideologies of the era, it led to a situation in political circles in which people couldn’t decide which ideology was the correct one. The inevitable result of that were multiple ideological tendencies within the party. This increased the risk of pluralism and division within the Nationalist party. Initially, the KMT’s ideological “grand unification” of the KMT relied mainly on Sun’s personal authority. Nearly all statements and directives came from Sun alone. This went so far that during the decade prior to 1923 no KMT party congresses were held. The Party’s doctrine was basically interpreted by Sun Yat-sen alone.
After Sun’s death, in response to the ideological crisis, Chiang Kai-shek and others brought up Confucius in an attempt to use the status of the Confucianism orthodoxy of ancient China to exclude dissenters and to establish its exclusive authority over the KMT and the Three People’s Principles ideology. The re-establishment of Confucianism and the high-profile activities of Confucian rituals and scripture readings have actually elevated Confucianism to the level of a political faith which invariably exacerbated the confusion of doctrinal beliefs. The ensuing confusion caused some KMT Party members to abandon the Three People’s Principles to seek other paths. (7) The result was that forming new political parties became a popular trend during the Republic of China era. At the founding of the Kuomintang Sun Yat-sen had already pointed out that “most Chinese people do not understand the true meaning of the word party, [they] …… thought that once they joined a political party, they must protect their own party, attack other parties, and disregard the the country’s overall situation” and went on to say that “The chief purpose of a political party is to create happiness for the country and promote the well-being of the people.” (8) The KMT, which had already come to power, was still confined to a narrow view owing to the party’s own selfishness. This made it difficult to realize the paradigm shift of the Three People’s Principles from being merely the program of a political party to imposing a model for the transformation of China.
Compared to the KMT, the Communist Party of China, which had been in the opposition during the revolutionary period, manifested a more ambitious vision. The Communists attached great importance to both the class struggle and the national contradictions in modern China. The Communists stressed both importance of ideology to the integration and unity of the Communist Party, believing that the Party was founded on ideological unity and so through rectification campaigns, training courses at Communist Party schools and other methods strengthened the education education to make members proper communists and strengthen the faith of Communist Party members in Communism. At the same time, communists, taking a big picture view of what was important for the state and the nation, adopted a relatively tolerant attitude toward different political parties and their ideologies: “When social classes exist in a society, there are as many ideologies as there are classes.” Under those conditions, we can’t put a stop to it; we should adopt “competition” as the way to establish our authority.
Given differences in the beliefs of the political parties, the communists “made a distinction between propaganda for the communist ideological system and social system and the implementation of the action program for implementing New Democracy.” (9) The Communist ideals were made into specific action programs and goals for each stage of struggle according to the different themes of each period, reflecting to the greatest extent the common aspirations of all progressive groups. For example, during the Revolutionary period, the idea of “overthrowing the warlords” was deeply rooted in people’s minds, and even the “Three Great Policies”[Sun Yat-sen’s policies of alliance with the Soviet Union, alliance with the Communist Party and helping the peasants.] of the Kuomintang were widely accepted. Therefore the Communists spoke in favor of these things and even supported the “Three Great Principles” of the KMT. This led Hu Hanmin to lament that “The most popular sayings circulating these days are familiar: most of them were coined by the Communists”. “社会上耳熟口顺恬不为怪者———多半为共产党所制造” During the War of Resistance, views such as “Stop the Civil War, let’s all join together to fight the foreigners” tingzhi neizhan, yizhi duiwai 停止内战，一致对外 embodied the historical mission of national salvation and became an important basis for maintaining the cooperation between the Communist Party and the State. (10)
During the war of national liberation, the ideas of “Down with Chiang Kai-shek, liberate all of China” reflected the theme of the times of democratic nation-building. The democratic parties eventually answered the appeal under the call of the Communist Party of China’s “May Day” slogan and embarked on the political path of multi-party cooperation. Thus It can be seen that the CCP had a national vision even before it came to power. Through its adaptation of Marxism to the needs of a governing party and the needs of the state, the Communist Party found rich resources for the sinicization of Marxism.
[Footnotes for Page 201]
① Selected Works of Liu Shaoqi (volume 1), p. 101. ② Ren Jianshu, ed. Li Dazhao: The Collected Works of Li Dazhao, vol. 2, p. 554, Shanghai People’s Publishing House, 1993 ③ Li Dazhao: The Collected Works of Li Dazhao, vol. 2, p. 362. ④ Selected Works of Mao Zedong, vol. 1, p. 288. ⑤ Selected Works of Mao Zedong, vol. 2, p. 663. ⑥ Selected Works of Mao Zedong, vol. 1, p. 296 ⑦ Deng Yanda: The Collected Works of Deng Yanda (People’s Publishing House, 1981), p. 115. ⑧ Qin Xiaoyi, editor-in-chief: The Complete Works of the Founding Fathers, vol. 2, Modern China Press, 1989. p. 334. ⑨ Selected Works of Mao Zedong, vol. 2, pp. 687, 706. (10) Liu Chuan, Jiang Yongjing, The Chronology of Mr. Hu Hanmin, Historical Committee of the Central Committee of the Chinese Kuomintang, 1978, p. 395.
3. Only by Transforming the Masses and Popularizing Ideology for the Masses Can the Hearts of the Masses be Won and and Finally Become a Real Force for Change.
As early as in the early days of the Kuomintang, Sun Yat-sen proposed that every Party member had the responsibility to “convert” the people and “use this doctrine to unify the minds and hearts of the entire country. Once this Party has done that, we naturally will be able to unify the country.” 1 But Sun Yat-sen did nothing to stop the civil war and unite with the outside world, which embodied the historical mission of national salvation. Under Chiang Kai-shek, the Three People’s Principles were interpreted in Confucian terms. The result was that the Confucian traditional ideas about social hierarchy were spread far and wide: that is these differences in the social hierarchy are based on people’s level of their knowledge. Dai Jitao divided the people into “people with foresight”, “people who understood after the fact”, and “people who were unaware”. He believed that the majority of Chinese people belonged to the third category of the “unaware”. These people whose “six senses are dulled and are ignorant” so that at present all that can be done is for the “people who have understood and gained revolutionary enlightenment to make revolution on behalf of the majority who are unable to do so.” What this meant specifically was that those in the capitalist class who have become conscious will make revolution for the benefit of the working class and for the landowners to make revolution in the interests of the peasant class … those who do not make revolution are simply ignorant. If they had been enlightened, they would have found the charity to fight on behalf of the suffering peasants and workers”. (2)
Chiang Kai-shek also believed: “Our revolutionary doctrine, revolutionary strategy are all difficult things. Our farsighted Leader has explained it to us in great detail.” and “there is no need to have any doubts.” (3) In this way, the educated elites became the masters of Chinese society, and the ordinary people became blind followers incapable of initiative. In fact however, in the eyes of the people, these upper-class people were not considered to be “foresighted”. They lacked the knowledge to lead the masses and their actions contradicted the theories they were espousing.” (4) They had already lost the capability and the qualifications to convert the masses to their theories.
In this regard, the Communists clearly pointed out that “The awakening of the Chinese workers and peasants must come through class struggle. They must decide to fight now to improve their own lives and not wait for Dai Jitao to induce the capitalist landlords to become benevolent. ⑤ In order to awaken the masses, the CCP vigorously promoted the popularization of Marxism using popular forms and expressions that the people enjoyed and would easily understand. They created popularized versions of the Marxist-Leninist classic works. They published many works of popularization such as Ai Siqi’s Popular Philosophy, Hu Jiao’s The New Philosophy’s View of Life, Liu Liu’s Street Talks, Chen Weishi’s Popular Lectures on Dialectics.
Even more important, the CCP, while doing ideological popularization work, also conducted important experiments on how to bring Communist Party members themselves closer to the masses. Going back perhaps to the founding of the Chinese Communist Party itself, the Communists, as representatives of the working class, had already made significant efforts to bring themselves closer to the masses. The Communists, as representatives of the working class, realized that “We are all intellectuals and are distant from the working class, so we should first strengthen our ties with them” and “we must rid intellectuals of their desire to become scholars and enter the intellectual world, urge them to join the revolutionary movement of the proletariat, so that they can become members of the working class.” (6)
During the War of Resistance, confronted by a difficult rural environment, the CCP realized that the peasants as the most reliable allies of the proletariat and included them as dynamic forces for revolution, believing that “Comparing unreformed intellectuals with the workers and peasants, we feel that the cleanest people are the workers and peasants. Even though their hands are black and their feet have cow shit on them, they are still cleaner than the bourgeoisie and petty bourgeoisie intellectuals” (7). Party cadres and intellectuals were called upon to go deep into the countryside, to learn from the peasants, and even become peasants themselves. This approach, though often seen as a good one, is not only a good one, but is the best one. This approach is often seen as populism. However, it was because Mao Zedong realized that the sinicization of Marxism could not be achieved simply by relying only on the intellectuals’ bookish theories and debates. If so, it would not be possible to solve China’s real problems. Thus he chose the alliance of the workers and peasants as the way forward. This alliance eventually became a rich source of power for the revolutionary cause and national construction. It is in just this sense that the source of the CPC’s victory lay in its complete integration with the people. 4. The Old Order and New China
The ultimate end of a consciousness and an ideology is necessarily the destruction or maintenance of a political order. Soon after Chiang Kai-shek took office, the Kuomintang replaced the North China warlord government [Beiyang zhengfu] and achieved the formal unification of China. By this time, Chiang Kai-shek had already begun to consolidate his own rule and gradually put himself at the forefront. This fostered in him an ever-clearer tendency to be satisfied with actual rule of only a portion of the country and to seek to maintain the status quo.
[Footnotes for page 202]
① Sun Yat-sen: The Complete Works of Sun Yat-sen, China Bookstore, 1985, p. 284. ② The Department of Party History of the Communist Party of China and the Department of History of Modern Chinese Political Thought, Renmin University of China, ed: Selected Materials on Dai Jitaoism, People’s University of China Press, 1983, pp. 35-36. pp. 35-36. ③ Qin Xiaoyi, ed., Collection of the Thoughts and Sayings of Former President Chiang Kai-shek, Volume 20 (Taipei), The Central Cultural Relics Supply House, 1984, p. 369. ④ He Yuesheng: “On the Reasons for the Failure of the Reform Movement”, in Independent Review, 1936, No. 9. ⑤ Before the Sixth Congress of the Chinese Communist Party, edited by the Secretariat of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, People’s Publishing House, 1980, p. 344. ⑥ “The Report of the Communist Organization in Beijing”, in Selected Documents of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, vol. 1, 1989, pp. 13-15. ⑦ Selected Works of Mao Zedong, vol. 3, p. 851.
In 1929, Chiang Kai-shek in his essay “Revolutionary and Not Revolutionary” 《革命与不革命》 clearly stated “What we seek is political stability and economic and social order under Kuomintang rule. Within a certain period, we will eliminate all the theories and methods of the Communist Party. Chinese society will have been stabilized, and the Party’s foundation will have been firmly established. Once that has been accomplished, we will move on to put into practice the “The Three People’s Principles” to fully complete the national revolution.” (1) In that case, Confucianism, which had always been known for maintaining ritual and order, became a natural tool for the Chiang Kai-shek clique to maintain stability. In response to the accusations of backsliding, Chiang Kai-shek also argued that “there is nothing in the world that does not come from the past. Therefore, fundamentally speaking, there is no such thing as old or new. The older things are, the more new they are” (2) and “After World War I, Germany and Italy quickly jumped to the top of the list of powerful countries, while China slowed and could not accomplish its national renaissance…. The most fundamental reason for this lies in the question of whether or not the general public knows the rites. …… In Germany and Italy, all of the general public respected the social order”. (3)
In this way, the Three Principles of the People which were fundamentally revolutionary, but now constrained by the rites and order, were frustrated by the barriers erected by China’s old social order and so lost they drive to carry China forward. Hou Weilu pointed out: “The transformation into a legal order and the vulgarization of traditional thought will result in ‘heresies” arising to rebel against orthodox thought.” ④ The infatuation of Chiang Kai-shek’s government’s obsession with the old order strengthened the determination of the Communists to revolt. Mao Zedong believed that Confucian ritual was a product of feudal society and that it was”something that has already entered the museum of history. We must not refuse to inherit and learn from the ancients and foreigners or even from the feudal class and the bourgeoisie. But inheritance and borrowing must not become a substitute for one’s own creative thought. Nothing can replace that. After the defeat of the Revolution, the Communists attached great importance to the construction of the base areas and experimented in various fields, such as politics, economy, and culture. “Here there is democratic politics, here the people live and work in peace and contentment, here the army and the people are always enthusiastic in developing production, here there are labor heroes. Here people come together with other people, the government employees come together with the people, and the army comes together with the people. They all live with each other like a family. Here in just a few years, the desolation and poverty of the past under the rule of the warlord bureaucrats and party agents were swept away. Everyone was adequately clothed and had enough to eat.” (7)
The successful construction of the base areas actually represented the future direction of China’s development and became the foundation for all the undertakings of the new China. On this basis, Mao Zedong pointed out that since the founding of the Communist Party, Chinese society had advanced considerably. He said, “We often treat many of the immediate progresses as a matter of routine. In fact, compared with the past, it has been a great transformation. This became a constituent part of China’s overall national condition, “China is moving forward, not backward and it is the revolutionary base that leads China forward.” (8)
III. Doubts About the Confucianization of Marxism
Calls for the Confucianization of the Three People’s Principles ended hastily with the defeat of the Nationalist government on the mainland. However, it seems that the lessons of history always have to be repeated many times before people at large can be finally awakened. In recent years, another wave of Confucianization, with the target this time being Marxism, has emerged in China. This has been actively promoted through publications, schools, websites and conferences. It has had a considerable impact. This trend holds that China has always followed the path of Westernization — “using the techniques of the barbarians to strengthen China” and that New Democracy, just like the Three People’s Principles, are not the body of Chinese culture but are instead actually the body of Western culture that was transferred to China through Russia. As for its “use”, that is naturally also the ‘use’ of Western culture so that both its ‘body’ and the ‘use’ are Western.
The reform and opening up policy that came later still followed this path that diverged from Chinese culture. “The so-called ‘reform’ is to learn from the West and carry out reform, and the so-called ‘opening up’ is to open up to the West. The result has been that China’s traditional “rites and order” were bankrupt and traditional Chinese learning is in severe decline”. (9) The only solution can be to restore Confucianism orthodoxy, to make Confucianism the “center of cultural power,” and to make China into a “Confucian state” in order to “solve the century-old ‘legitimacy crisis’ of Chinese political regimes. The Chinese renaissance is the renaissance of Chinese culture. At the core of the Chinese renaissance is reviving Confucianism. The fastest way to revive Confucianism is to establish Confucianism as the state religion”.
Compared with the Confucianization of the Three People’s Principles, Confucianization in the new era has some differences in its manifestation and its direction but in terms of its substance, the two have the same path and are in essence identical.
First of all, looking at its origin, this is basically a copy of a pre-existing trend overseas and lacks and lacks real roots. The “Confucianization” trend in the new era, like the Confucianization of the Three People’s Principles, was not primarily domestically inspired, but arose directly from trends that were causing excitement abroad. After the founding of New China, a series of ideological campaigns to break with the old thinking and establish the new thinking had largely limited the influence of Confucianism in the domestic political arena. Some prominent cultural figures who have been enthusiastic about the revival of Confucianism have also expressed their support for the New China that had arisen in the new era.
[Footnotes for page 203]
① Qin Xiaoyi, ed., The Complete Works of the Former President Chiang Kai-shek, edited by Zhang Qi Yun, p. 884. ② Chiang Kai-shek, “The Essentials of the New Life Movement,” in Revolutionary Literature, 68th series, (Taipei) Central Cultural Heritage Supply, 1984. p. 25. ③ Hou Wailu: A General History of Chinese Thought, vol. 2, People’s Publishing House, 1957, p. 160. ④ Selected Works of Mao Zedong, vol. 2, p. 686. ⑤ Selected Works of Mao Zedong, vol. 3, p. 860. ⑥ Chen Boda and others: “Review of The Fate of China”, reprinted by Xinhua Bookstore, North China, 1949, pp. 24, 61. ⑦ Selected Works of Mao Zedong, vol. 3, pp. 31, 877. ⑧ Jiang Qing, “The Utopian Practice of Contemporary Great Confucianism,” in Southern People Weekly, July 21, 2005. ⑨ Jiang Qing: “The Concept of Rebuilding Confucianism in China”, 蒋庆《关于重建中国儒教的构想》also found at http://www.xinfajia.net/1585.html
(10) Kang Xiaoguang: “Benevolent Governance: Legitimacy Theory of the Authoritarian State”, in Strategy and Management, No. 2, 2004.
In this situation, the revival of Confucianism has been mostly the obsession of foreign scholars and a few Chinese who have emigrated overseas. Setting out from some situations in some foreign countries or overseas, they put forth ideas rooted in those foreign circumstances. They formed a tendency of thought which eventually made its way back to China. This is what Jiang Qing calls the four stages, i.e., “take up traditions and transmit them to posterity”, “clearly explain orthodox positions”, “spread the tradition to repay the inheritance you have received” and”return home to take up one’s former position”. (1) Du Weiming, a long-time expatriate living in the United States, has also publicly declared: “The viability of Confucianism in the 21st century depends largely on whether it can pass through New York, Paris, and Tokyo and finally return to China.” ②
This kind of Confucianism, which has been transferred back to China, is inevitably and clearly marked by Western Learning. From this perspective, while the trend towards Confucianization in China is superifically a return to the “Chinese” element and an increase in cultural self-confidence, in its very bones it has been clearly westernized. Some domestic scholars tend to regard foreign views as a form of return to features of “Chinese” and a mark of cultural self-confidence. Some domestic Chinese scholars tend to view foreign views as an ideological authority; whenever outsiders advocate Westernism, they too promote westernization in China. When foreigners switch to advocating Confucianism, these domestic scholars follow suit and become Confucianized. Even on the question of how to address China’s own traditional culture they let foreigners lead them by the nose. Their thinking is determined by trends overseas to the point where they can’t talk about China without throwing in a comparative perspective using examples from foreign countries. “This is a paradoxical and extremely ironic phenomenon. As early as 1930, Mao Zedong said that “The victory of the Chinese revolutionary struggle depends on the Chinese comrades understanding China.” (3) This warning is still very relevant for us today.
Secondly, when one considers the thought embodying this intellectual trend, we can see that it misinterprets Chinese reality, lacks an objective, big picture dialectical perspective. Generally speaking, when foreign ideas first arrive in a new land, they necessarily meet psychological resistance from traditional national culture. When this happens, the people spreading the new ideology will usually adopt the strategy of putting “new wine in old bottles” so that it will take on national characteristics in order to reduce resistance to its spread. An example is the way Chinese intellectuals early on used the ancient idea of commonwealth to interpret the doctrine of scientific socialism.
However, as the process of dissemination progressed, the sinicization of foreign doctrines necessarily reached the practical level and became a mechanism promoting doctrinal development mainly through the combination of theory and practice. Then old traditions can only prove their guiding value by being integrated into reality through practice. Only in this way can a sinicized ideology become genuinely influential. Otherwise, it is merely glorifying the tradition. Divorced from the rational process of practice, it is merely an artificial Americanization of tradition, these people are “trying hard to pull together some nice new terms and impose them, regardless of whether they fit. They see themselves as adding glory and value to Chinese culture but never realize that what they are doing is ruining it.” (4)
No ideology in fact is omnipotent. No ideology can transcend history to solve all the real problems of social development. Ever since the mid 19th century, time and again cold facts have proved that the revival of Confucianism cannot save China. Marxism, however, has shown China the right path to prosperity, strength and democracy in a long breaking-in period of theory and practice. It continues to enrich and optimize the Chinese nation. The Chinese nation has enriched and optimized what nationhood means for everyone in the People’s Republic of China. In this sense, Marxism today is no longer a foreign ideology. Marxism in China has long left behind the “tool of national salvation” instrumental sense it bore during the first years of its introduction into China. Chinese Marxism has become a reality that integrates means and goals and has thus become the clearest distinguishing characteristic of today’s China. It cannot be denied that China as a developing country still faces many kinds of real problems. Academics can go on and on giving us their views, their words and their policies but only if these things are rooted in practice and are focused on the future can they lead to new leaps forward in knowledge and practice.
Marx, in his review of Hegel’s view that “historical events and persons can be said to have appeared twice”, pointed out that “he forgot to add this: the first time it appears as a tragedy, the second time as a comedy.” Imitation and repetition, in any form, will become a laughing stock of history. The history of the successes and failures of the Communist Party and the Kuomintang has taught us a simple but profound truth: the power of ideology can be weak or it can be infinite. The key is to see whether one has found a realistic path forward based on practice. Any attempt to create a Chinese miracle by Confucianizing Marxism is certainly just another baseless fantasy.
(Author’s work unit: Marxism Institute, Xiamen University) (Editor responsible: Li Mu)
[Footnotes for Page 204]
① Jiang Qing: “The Relevance of Reviving Confucianism in Mainland China and the Problems it Faces”, in Goose Lake, No. 8, 1989. ② Du Weiming: The Collected Works of Du Weiming, Wuhan Publishing House, 2002, p. 563. ③ Selected Works of Mao Zedong, vol. 1, p. 115. ④ Yang Mingzhai: Review of the Central Cultural Outlook, Commercial Press, 1924, p. 153. ⑤ The Selected Works of Marx and Engels, 2nd edition, vol. 1, p. 584
Chinese text in PDF 三民主义儒学化与马克思主义中国化 ———基于思想史的比较及其实现路径的反思
General Secretary Xi Jinping seems to harken back to Lenin and his ideas about forging a new type of person, the New Soviet Person [человек chelovek means person in Russian] . Xi often refers to the Nikolai Ostrovsky’s 1930s classic of Soviet literature How Steel was Tempered. See for example the words in the second paragraph of the Central Committee circular
“Opinions” pointed out that Marxism is the fundamental guiding ideology of our Party and state. The Marxist Institute is the main forum for the study, research and propaganda of Marxism. Ideological and political theory courses are the main way that the Marxist Institute promotes adherence to Xi Jinping socialist thought with Chinese characteristics in the new era in order to forge souls and educate people… It is essential for cultivating the new person of this era who will assume the great responsibility of national rejuvenation … We must guide young students to firmly establish in themselves a shared regard for the lofty ideals of communism and for socialism with Chinese characteristics, and train generations of socialist builders and successors.
Strengthening Marxism Across the Curriculum
After the protests throughout China in May – June 1989, the Chinese Communist Party sought to prevent a repetition by strengthening discipline and re-inforcing ideological control. The fall of 1989 entering university fresheman got some military training before starting classes. In 1998, a university reform strengthen Party control. Party committees or at least branches of larger party committees were established in many commerical enterprises, even (or perhaps especially) in law offices that had taken up cases to protect the rights of people protesting some Party and government policies. Perhaps it was in the last few years of General Secretary Jiang Zemin that the pace of tightening picked up, continuing under General Secretary Hu Jintao, and then greatly accelerating under General Secretary Xi Jinping. All the while many crackdowns won popular support since they apparently aimed at official corruption. In this passage in the second-to-last paragraph can be seen a determination to strengthen ideological right-thinking even further.
To firmly establish the principle of educating the whole-person throughout the entire curriculum and giving them an and all-round education, establish a collaborative education mechanism. This means that ideology and political theories are incorporated into the entire curriculum goes on in sync with the ideological and political courses. Every day we should integrate ideology and political thinking into our work and into the ideological and political courses themselves so that their arises a powerful resonance between the two.
Communist Party inspectors have told education officials and elite universities in China to step up ideological education and enforce party discipline on campus. The orders were delivered in “feedback sessions” on Thursday following a wave of inspections of some of the country’s top schools by personnel sent by the party’s Central Committee. The meetings included senior officials from the Ministry of Education and top managers from 31 universities directly under the committee’s supervision, the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, the party’s top anti-graft agency, said on Sunday. The inspectors found a number of “common and deep-seated problems”, particularly in politics and ideology, the CCDI said. “Some schools have slackened in their ideological work in the new era, [causing] hidden risks of varying degree,” it said. “Strict enforcement of the party’s control is lagging … and problems such as corruption in scientific research and infrastructure [investment] persist.” According to the state media reports, 15 teams of inspectors were assigned from May to check on party units at the ministry and the universities.
Concluding with a Warning to Slackers!
In order to promote the construction of a good and strong Marxist institute, the development of the Marxist Institute shall be included as an important element in the assessment of party building work in the unit, the assessment of the quality of schooling there will be an important item in the comprehensive assessment and evaluation of the unit leadership team, the main leaders and leaders in charge of the unit.
Conformity and Patriotic Education
Many countries inclucate their headline values into their pupils. Frances Fitzgerald wrote a series in the New Yorker and then in her 1979 book America Revised about propaganda in US high school textbooks. See the review “Why Don’t We Tell Children the Truth About America“.
We continually see these controversies in the United States as we consider and reconsider our views on the Civil War, even though it is 150 years in the rear view mirror, Recontruction, the ‘lost cause’ theory of southern history and the treatment of minority people in textbooks in society at large. The big difference is the power behind the standard stories that political leaders, some corporate leaders or some segment of society would like to impose on everyone. They just aren’t strong enough to pull it off over the long term. Always possible to go too far, but that it what debate does, things should find their own level.
Could it be that what Mao Zedong stressed, the vital importance of criticism and self-criticism is carried out more effectively in the USA than in Mao’s own homeland? (Probably that thought simply reflects my own failure to eradicate capitalist class thinking in myself! Some of my first Chinese textbooks were edited during the Cultural Revolution. They were filled with slogans, Mao’s poems and Mao’s essays with inspiring stories on people like the Canadian physician Norman Behune aka Bai Qiu’en 白求恩 and Lei Feng. Still, one must guard against a tendency to backslide.)
The Chinese Communist Party, with its formidable organization, internal cohesion and robut system of censorship (see Download He Qinglian’s Book on Media Control in China ) and repression, does seem much more capable of imposing its interpreation upon history and contemporary society than does any other state existing at present. The collapse of the Soviet Union still haunts the Chinese Communist Party.
Ideological security is a top national security issues in China. See for example 2020: PRC Scholar Yin Jiwu: Comparing US and PRC Concepts of National Security National security sensitivities on the part of the Chinese Communist Party and the PRC government make it much more allergic to foreign criticism or questioning of its core values than are many other countries. One aspect of this is that some Chinese agree with some Western criticisms of the Communist Party, accentuating the Party’s fear about subversion and its tendency to use anti-foreigner resentment to paint domestic critics, in the vivid Mao-era term, as just “running dogs” of foreigners.
The General Office of the CPC Central Committee issued the “Opinions on Strengthening the Construction of Marxist Institutes in the New Era”
September 21, 2021 18:50 | Source: Xinhua News Agency
BEIJING, Sept. 21 (Xinhua) — Recently, the General Office of the CPC Central Committee issued the “Opinions on Strengthening the Construction of Marxist Institutes in the New Era” (hereinafter referred to as “Opinions”), and issued a notice requiring all regions and departments to seriously implement in conjunction with the actual.
”Opinions” pointed out that Marxism is the fundamental guiding ideology of our Party and state. The Marxist Institute is the main forum for the study, research and propaganda of Marxism. Ideological and political theory courses are the main way that the Marxist Institute promotes adherence to Xi Jinping socialist thought with Chinese characteristics in the new era in order to forge souls and educate people. Strengthening the construction of Marxist institutes is an important initiative to deepen the research and construction of Marxist theory. It is essential for cultivating the new person of this era who will assume the great responsibility of national rejuvenation, for building philosophical and social sciences with Chinese characteristics guided by Marxism and building a socialist ideology with strong cohesion and leadership. This will further enrich and develop contemporary Chinese Marxism and 21st century Marxism. Stressing the socialist foundation of Chinese universities is essential. We must guide young students to firmly establish in themselves a shared regard for the lofty ideals of communism and for socialism with Chinese characteristics, and train generations of socialist builders and successors.
”Opinions” pointed out that since the 18th Party Congress, all relevant departments and units in all regions have been carrying out what has been asked of them by the Party Central Committee. The promotion of the development of Marxist Institutes has made great progress in all it aspects raising this work to a whole new level. At the same time, compared with what is needed in the new era, there is still a shortfall in the number of Marxist institutes that can provide the education and teaching, research and propaganda, team building, to developing cadres of talented people and work in other area. Work in the discipline of developing Marxist theory badly needs strengthening. Confronted by these urgent needs, we must adapt to the new situation and new tasks, based on the overall situation of the Party and the national cause, to strengthen the construction of the Marxist institutes as a fundamental and strategic project that will promote the achievement of high-quality development.
”Opinions” clearly calls to develop further Marxist institutes for the new era, to adhere to Marxism-Leninism, Mao Zedong Thought, Deng Xiaoping Theory, the important thinking of the “Three Represents”, the scientific outlook on development, Xi Jinping Thought on socialism with Chinese characteristics in the new era as our guide, fully implement the Party’s education policy, adhere to hold fast to the policy of building education on the basis of socialism. We must carry out the fundamental task of educating people with moral values, to make teaching and research on the latest achievements of the sinicization of Marxism a top priority. We must further clarify the responsibilities and missions of educators, promote internal development, strengthen policy guarantees, build a strong position for Marxist theory education, research and propaganda, and training, and to provide solid theoretical support for talented people. In this way, we willl provide solid theoretical support and talent training support for the comprehensive construction of a modern socialist country and the realization of the Chinese dream. The main goal is to provide solid academic support and build an excellent and numerous cadre of teachers for the comprehensive construction of a modern socialist country and the realization of the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.
”Opinions” pointed out that we need to promote the authentic development of Marxist institutes. Strengthen the development of the discipline of Marxist theory, see to it that the discipline has the correct ideological orientation, give full play to the leading role of Marxist theory discipline in the unit. Vigorously promote the ideological and political theory course reform and innovation, in political guidance, doctrinal interpretation and value shaping efforts to enhance the effectiveness of teaching. Strengthen the construction of curriculum and teaching materials system, fully integrate the Party’s theoretical innovations into each course, and effectively enhance the political, contemporary, scientific and readable nature of teaching materials. Based on the vivid practice of socialism with Chinese characteristics in the new era, find the way to make a point, focus on essential points and on the relationship between the points that are made. Strengthen the research and propaganda on Marxist theory. Make efforts to build a high-quality teacher team with firm faith, solid theoretical skills, in sufficient numbers and in an optimal environment. Enhance their sense of mission, professional identity and sense of achievement. Improve the quality of professional training, and constantly train successors to ensure the future of the discipline of Marxist theory.
The “Opinions” pointed out that the policy support mechanism for the construction of Marxist colleges should be strengthened. The effectiveness of nurturing people as the standard, improve the discipline of Marxist theory, in line with ideological and political theory course requirements in a way that is conducive to creating a system for assessment and evaluation of the professional development of teachers. With the goal of cultivating teachers who are truly studious, who truly understand, who truly believe and truly apply Marxism, improve the training system, increase support and improve the incentive mechanism to reward teachers for improving themselves. To firmly establish the principle of educating the whole-person throughout the entire curriculum and giving them an and all-round education, establish a collaborative education mechanism. This means that ideology and political theories are incorporated into the entire curriculum goes on in sync with the ideological and political courses. Every day we should integrate ideology and political thinking into our work and into the ideological and political courses themselves so that their arises a powerful resonance between the two. Strengthen the development of the Marxist theory academic camp, foster it and build a strong foundation for its development, and build a support platform for it. Build Marxist institute centers of excellence throughout the country, improve the quality of Marxist institutes, strengthen the influence of model Marxist institutes, and improve their management so that they will Marxist institutes throughout the country will take the lead, encouraging Marxist institutes to spur one another on to greater progress so that they will all improve and create a situation in which the Marxist institutes are improving across the board.
”Opinions” stressed that the party should effectively strengthen the leadership of the development of Marxist institutes. Party committees at all levels should make developing Marxist institutes a high priority, strengthen leadership and overall planning. Propaganda, education and other departments should provide strong policy guidance, organizational and financial support for the construction of Marxist institutes. Units where a Marxist institutes is located should strengthen the construction of the Marxist Institutes as a key institute, Marxist theory as a key discipline, and the ideological and political theory course as a key course, and ensure that it gets priority. To strictly supervise the assessment, in the combination of inspection inspection carried out in the ideological work responsibility system special inspection, increase the inspection of the construction of the Marxist institutes. In order to promote the construction of a good and strong Marxist institute, the development of the Marxist Institute shall be included as an important element in the assessment of party building work in the unit. The assessment of the quality of schooling there will be an important item in the comprehensive assessment and evaluation of the unit leadership team, the main leaders and leaders in charge of the unit.
Chinese teachers local eduational authorities and classroom teachers are working out how to implement the Communist Party and central government policy of reducing excessive burden on students (see for example Private Out, State Further “In” as Chinese Education Focuses on the Family) as well as developing a morality and rule by law curriculum inspired by Xi Jinping Thought.
Will Xi Thought require a bit less class time on Xi Thought? Could be.
Below are DeepL machine translations of articles I picked up from the Internet on the response of local government and the central government on curriculum and the “reducing testing and homework overburden” policy along with an article I came across that cites Mao in support of the new policy. Perhaps partly inspired by concerns about burned out young people and the “lying flat” movement.
Looks like a good thing to me! This reminds me of when I worked at the U.S. Consulate General in Chengdu ten years ago I met students and teachers from a foreign curriculum school in the Dujiangyan District. I asked them how that is possible since according to PRC law, PRC citizens in China must follow the PRC national curriculum. I was told that the students get the Chinese national curriculum in the morning and then a western english-language curriculum in the afternoon. And lots of homework. A bit too much I thought! Not to claim that I am a forerunner of Xi Thought though.
From a local government:
Notice on the convening of secondary school morality and the rule of law subject teaching and research work conference
Bureau of the junior high schools, Shouchun Middle School, Xinhua Experimental Middle School.
We are scheduled to hold a teaching and research meeting on September 9 (next Thursday) from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at the Forest City Campus of Hefei 45 Middle School, to exchange ideas on how to improve teaching quality in the context of “double reduction”, implement the “Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics in the New Era” teaching work, and further To summarize the work of teaching and research in the last semester and plan the teaching and research activities in this semester. Specific activities are arranged as follows.
September 9, 2021 9:30-11:30 am
45 Forest City Campus, second floor conference room
1. The new changes of the 9th grade textbook and the opinion of grasping the textbook in the context of “double reduction” 45th Middle School Bai Fujun
2. How to optimize homework design in the context of “double reductions” Luyang Middle School Kang Jie
3. “Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics in the New Era” Teaching Plan 45th Middle School Forest City Campus Dai Baozhen
4. School teaching and research group preparation group work plan exchange 42 middle school 45 middle school Oak Bay campus
5. Next semester teaching and research work arrangement Lu Meng
Please participate in each school morality and the rule of law subject teaching and research team leader, eight or nine grade preparation team leader.
Luyang District Education and Sports Bureau Teaching and Research Office
From People’s Daily, reposted on the PRC Central Government website
Promote the “double reduction” policy to the full implementation
This fall semester is the first semester of the full implementation of the “double reduction” (meaning to reduce the burden of homework and off-campus training burden of students in compulsory education) deployment requirements of primary and secondary schools. The majority of the country’s primary and secondary schools and kindergartens will start school normally on September 1, in addition to individual places that are on hold.
“We should make great efforts to strengthen and improve in-school education, improve the quality of school education service system, and effectively achieve that teachers should teach as much as possible, students learn enough to learn well.” On August 30, the Ministry of Education press conference, the Ministry of Education Department of Basic Education Director Lv Yugang stressed.
Significantly reduce the number of exams
The reporter learned at the conference, in order to implement the education evaluation reform and “double reduction” requirements, the Ministry of Education issued a “notice on strengthening the management of compulsory education school examinations” (hereinafter referred to as “notice”).
“At present, some areas and compulsory education schools have a large number of exams, difficult, poor quality, improper use of results and other outstanding issues, contrary to the quality of education orientation, resulting in excessive burden on students, excessive pressure to take exams, damage to the physical and mental health of students, must be corrected.” Lv Yugang talked about the examination at the compulsory education level mainly plays a diagnosis of the learning and teaching situation, improve and strengthen teaching, evaluate the quality of teaching and other functions, except for junior high school graduates to raise the examination (academic level examination), other examinations do not have a screening and selection function.
According to the notice, it is clear that the number of exams has been significantly reduced. The first and second grades of elementary school do not conduct paper-and-pencil exams, compulsory education other grades by the school to organize a final examination once a semester, junior high school grades from the actual different disciplines, can be appropriate to arrange a midterm examination. All places shall not organize regional or inter-school exams for primary grades and junior high school non-graduation grades; schools and classes shall not organize weekly exams, monthly exams, unit exams and other kinds of exams, nor shall they organize exams in various disguises such as tests, quizzes, time-limited exercises, school research, etc. It is reported that the requirement to significantly reduce the number of exams first in the central and provinces (autonomous regions and municipalities) to determine the “double reduction” pilot areas to carry out.
The notice also proposes that the reasonable use of test results, school mid-term and final exams to implement grade evaluation, generally divided into four to five levels. The results of the examination is not ranked, not published, in an appropriate manner to inform students and parents. The results of the exams should not be used to adjust the class placement, seating and “labeling” of students; the results of the midterm and final exams in each semester of junior high school and the results of the mock exams in the second semester of junior high school should not be linked to further education.
Do not set up key classes by any other name
“The implementation of the ‘double reduction’ task undertaken by the school, must strengthen the management of education and teaching, strict implementation of education and teaching work discipline.” Lv Yugang said.
The Ministry of Education requires that the new school term begins, compulsory education schools should strictly implement the provisions of balanced classing, shall not set up key classes in any name, and effectively achieve a balanced allocation of teachers. The strict implementation of the teaching plan, do not arbitrarily increase or decrease class time, change the difficulty, adjust the progress, do not use the after-school service time to speak of new lessons. Strictly enforce the regulations on homework management, strictly prohibit assigning or disguising homework to parents, strictly prohibit asking parents to check and correct homework, eliminate repetitive and punitive homework, and do not ask students to correct their own homework. Strictly implement the examination management regulations, shall not be illegal to organize examinations, etc.
In addition, Lv Yugang introduced the fall semester, all schools around the world will also effectively reduce the excessive burden of homework, promote comprehensive coverage of after-school services, improve the overall quality of classroom teaching, strengthen home-school communication and publicity guidance, etc.
The responsibility to supervise
The “double reduction” supervision is an important step to promote the “double reduction” policies to be effective. Hu Yanpin, a first-class inspector of the Education Supervision Bureau of the Ministry of Education, introduced that “double reduction” supervision is listed as the “No. 1 project” of education supervision work in 2021, to place “double reduction” supervision in the The “double reduction” supervision should be placed in the top priority position and systematically deployed.
The Office of the Education Supervision Committee of the State Council and the Bureau of Education Supervision of the Ministry of Education require local supervisory departments to incorporate the implementation and effectiveness of the “double reduction” policy into the evaluation of the government’s performance of supervisory duties to further compact the government’s responsibility; set up a special reporting platform to notify typical cases of non-compliance and strengthen social supervision; organize open inspections and unannounced visits by state supervisors and responsible school supervisors to carry out regular supervision. Carry out regular supervision; interview, inform the problematic areas and units, strict accountability in accordance with the rules.
Hu Yanpin introduced the State Council Education Supervisory Committee Office to establish a “double reduction” special supervision semi-monthly notification system, starting in September every two weeks to inform the provinces of the “double reduction” work implementation progress. In addition, will also open the “exposure desk”, the implementation of the work, can be implemented and not implemented, or by repeatedly informing the typical problems that are still not in place, directly in the relevant media and network exposure, and start the accountability process in accordance with the rules.
“In the next phase, we will cascade down the responsibility of supervision, increase supervision, notification, interviews and accountability, and promote the ‘double reduction’ policy to the full implementation.” Hu Yanpin said. (Reporter Wu Yue)
Rereading “Mao Zedong on the Revolution in Education
Thoughts on Education
Introduction: Confucius came from a decadent slave-owning noble family, and did not attend any high school or university, and started his career as a funeral director, about a drummer. Some students answered all twenty questions, memorized from the books, and answered correctly according to the teacher’s lecture, but without creativity, they could only give fifty or sixty points.
Rereading “Mao Zedong on the Educational Revolution,” which was published by the People’s Publishing House in December 1967, although it is a quotation from the Cultural Revolution, it still has a strong sense of the times for today’s education! The realm of great men is that you can’t do and think that far ahead; teachers who are interested in education might as well “learn from the past”, which is also a prelude to a series of school teaching reforms during the Cultural Revolution.
“I have long said that our education policy should enable the educated to develop in moral, intellectual and physical education, and to become educated workers with socialist consciousness. Now there are many courses that kill people and put primary and secondary school students and college students in a state of tension every day.
The curriculum could be cut in half. It is not good for students to read books all day long, they can participate in some productive and necessary social work. Nowadays, the exams are used to deal with the enemy by making surprise attacks and giving strange and off-topic questions to the students. This is a way to test the eight-legged essay, I do not agree with, to completely change. I advocate that the questions are open to the public, so that students can study and read the books to do. For example, twenty questions, students can answer ten questions, good answers, some of them are very good, there is an originality, you can play a hundred percent; twenty questions are answered, also correct, but mediocre, no originality, give fifty or sixty points.
The exam can be crossed, just do not understand themselves, ask others understand. Understand the gains, why do we need to memorize it? People do, I copy once or better. You can try points. The old teaching system destroys human talent, destroying the youth, I do not agree.
Confucius came from a decadent slave-owning aristocracy, and did not go to any high school or university, and began his career as a funeral director, about a drummer. When people died, he went to blow and play. He could play the lute, shoot arrows, set up cars, and also knew something about the masses. At first, he worked as a small official, managing grain and grass, and managing cattle and sheep. Later he became a big official in the state of Lu, and the masses were heard. He later ran a private school and opposed students to engage in labor.
In the Ming Dynasty, Li Shizhen went to the mountains to collect medicine by himself for a long time before he wrote the “Compendium of Materia Medica”. Earlier, Zu Chongzhi, who invented something, also did not go to any high school or university. Franklin of the United States was an apprentice in a printing office and bought newspapers. He was the great inventor of electricity. Watt in England was a worker and a great inventor of the steam engine.
Gorky’s learning was entirely self-taught, and it is said that he attended only two years of elementary school. Nowadays, one is too many classes, one is too many books, too much pressure. Some courses do not necessarily have to be tested. Such as secondary school to learn a little logic, grammar, do not test, know what is grammar, what is logic can be, really understand, to work slowly to experience. The course speaks too much, is tedious philosophy. Boring philosophy is always going to perish. Such as scripture, make so many commentaries, now useless. I think this approach, whether it is Chinese or other countries’, is going to its own opposite and will perish. It is not necessary to read a lot of books.
Marxist books should be read, read to digest. Read too many and you won’t be able to digest them. You might even go the opposite way, become nerdy, become dogmatic, and revisionist. Nowadays, there are too many courses in schools, which put too much pressure on students. The lectures are not very good. The examination method takes students as the enemy and holds surprise attacks. These three items are not conducive to the lively and active development of young people in moral, intellectual and physical aspects. The whole education system is like that, openly called to fight for that five points, there are so some people to see through the score, bold initiative to learn. The first thing you need to do is to take a look at the set, and learn actively.
It is said that there is a student in a university, usually do not take notes, the test scored three and a half to four points, but the thesis in the class the highest level. In school is all excellent, work is not necessarily all excellent. In Chinese history, all those who won the first prize did not have any real talent, but some people who did not even get a scholarship had some real talent. Don’t take the marks seriously, focus on developing the ability to analyze and solve problems, don’t just run behind the instructor with no initiative of your own.
Oppose the injection method, even the bourgeois educators in the May Fourth period has long been proposed, why do not we oppose? Just don’t treat students as objects of strikes. Your teaching is to infuse, every day in class, there is so much to say? The instructor should issue the lecture notes to you. What are you afraid of? Students should be allowed to study the lecture notes themselves. What about keeping the lecture notes a secret from the students? The students should be allowed to copy it only when they get to the lecture hall, which ties them to death. College students, especially the senior ones, mainly study the problems by themselves, so why talk so much? The problem of educational reform is mainly a problem of the faculty. The instructor is so capable that nothing can be done without the lecture notes. Why don’t we send you the lecture notes and study the problems with you? When senior students ask questions, the faculty can answer 50% of them, and the rest say they don’t know, and discuss with the students, which is good. Don’t put on a show to scare people. Students are overburdened, it affects their health, and it’s useless to learn.
It is recommended that one third of the total number of all activities be cut. Please invite representatives of school teachers and students, discuss a few times, and decide to implement it. Please use your discretion on how to do it. I have doubts about the current education system. From elementary school to university, there are 16 or 17 years in total, and for more than 20 years, we can’t see rice, beans, wheat, millet and cereals, how workers do their jobs, how farmers farm, how commodities are exchanged, and how our bodies are damaged. I once told my children: “Go to the countryside and tell the poor peasants that my father said that after decades of reading, the more you read, the more stupid you become. Ask your uncles, uncles, sisters and brothers to be teachers and come to you to learn.” In fact, children before they start school. 1 year old to 7 years old, exposed to many things. 2 years old learn to talk, 3 years old wah wah wah quarrel with people, and a little older to take small tools to dig the earth, imitating adult labor. This is observing the world. Children have learned some concepts. Dogs, is a big concept. Black dogs and yellow dogs are smaller concepts. The yellow dog in his house is the concrete.
Man, the concept has shed many things, shed the difference between men and women, adults and children, Chinese and foreigners, …… only the characteristics that distinguish them from other animals. Who has seen “people”? Only Zhang San and Li Si can be seen. The concept of “house” is not visible to anyone, only the specific house, the house in Tianjin, the courtyard in Beijing.
University education should be transformed, and not so much time should be spent on school. The liberal arts should not be transformed. Can philosophers come out without transformation? Can we produce literary scholars? Can you produce historians? Nowadays, philosophers can’t do philosophy, literary scholars can’t write novels, historians can’t do history, and they have to engage in emperors and generals. To transform the liberal arts universities, students should go down to engage in industry, agriculture and commerce. As for engineering, science, the situation is different, they have internship factories, laboratories, in the internship factory to do work, in the laboratory to do experiments, but also to contact with social reality.”
Chairman Mao said, “The top scholars of all generations have not been very outstanding. Li Bai and Du Fu were not scholars or Hanlin, Han Yu and Liu Zongyuan were only second-class scholars, and Wang Shifu, Guan Hanqing, Luo Guanzhong, Pu Songling and Cao Xueqin were not all scholars and Hanlin. Pu Songling is a promoted showman, to be a higher class, not yet a lifer. It is when the scholar, Hanlin are not successful. The Ming dynasty did well only Ming Taizu, Ming Chengzu two emperors, one can not read and write, one is not much literacy. Later to Jiajing, intellectuals in power, but no, the country was not managed well. Li Houzhu died after more culture. Reading more books does not make an emperor great. Liu Xiu is a great scholar, and Liu Bang is a big straw man.” (Speech at the Symposium on Education Work held in the Great Hall of the People on February 13, 1964)
Chairman Mao also said, “The present approach to examinations is a way to deal with the enemy, not with the people. I do not approve of the practice of surprise attacks, biased questions, odd questions, or the method of examining eight essays, which needs to be completely reformed. I advocate openly issuing examination questions, announced to the students, so that students can read the book themselves, their own research, read the book to make. For example, if you give twenty questions on “Dream of the Red Chamber”, some students can give one hundred percent for their outstanding and creative answers to half of the questions. In addition, some students answer all twenty questions, is memorized from the book, according to the teacher’s instructions, but no creativity, can only give fifty or sixty points.
dedicated to Zhang Zhan an independent journalist detained for investigating the “Wuhan virus”
No matter what I write it does no good.
This planet sees every single day an endless string of tragedies.
Recently at Kabul Airport in Afghanistan, people desperately climbed onto planes to escape. After take-off, one fell from the plane’s landing gear.
My God, that man’s yearning for freedom was so very great, greater than life itself, that he smashed himself into a mess of flesh and bone!
Next, an Islamic State suicide bombing at the airport killed in an instant 184 innocents along with thirteen American soldiers. But the damned Taliban, who controlled airport access, claimed this had nothing to do with them.
So many tragedies! So many tragedies! So many that people can’t see an individual tragedy, seemingly shrunken down to ant-size by comparison.
That thinking ant is Zhang Zhan.
On January 23, 2020, the eve of the Spring Festival military lock down of Wuhan, central China’s largest city, because of the uncontrolled outbreak of the “Wuhan virus”, Zhang, without authorization, entered the place where that contagion, as dangerous as the Chernobyl nuclear leak, had originated. She was one of the four citizen journalists who did so.
The first three citizen journalists were Chen Qiushi, Fang Bin, and Li Zehwa. Each was made to mysteriously vanish. It was rumored that those three were “placed under residential surveillance at a designated place of residence according to the law”. But Chinese law as in fact broken — China’s Criminal Procedure Law requires that the detainee’s family be notified within 24 hours. This was not done.
Zhang Zhan, the fourth, was detained on criminal charges. She was the most determined of them all.
Zhang Zhan first caught my attention when she went alone, without protective equipment, to investigate the alleged break-out point of the “Wuhan virus” – the P4 laboratory at the Wuhan Institute of Virology, Chinese Academy of Sciences. She couldn’t get in so she circled around the perimeter wall of the P4 laboratory, explaining as she went along that she was not sure but this building may have been the source of the “Wuhan virus”. She was arrested soon thereafter.
In her own mind, she had done nothing wrong. She believed that searching for the truth is every citizen’s responsibility and duty. Only by knowing the truth and unmasking lies can we come to a scientific understanding of the virus outbreak, review our past mistakes, and prevent the further spread of the virus around the world. Without realizing it, she became, like the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize winner Liu Xiaobo who claimed to have “no enemies”, the most dangerous enemy of the communist dictatorship. No matter what your political stance, as long as you care about the truth and actually pursue it, you are the most dangerous enemy of the communist dictatorship.
That is why Zhang Zhan was arrested. She paid a high price amidst the human catastrophe caused by the “Wuhan virus”. Refusing to confess to any crime, she was abused and tortured during the seven-and-a-half months between her arrest and her trial. Her prolonged hunger strike left her unable to stand. She was sentenced sitting in a wheelchair with her hands tied behind her back. Her mouth was gagged, just as dozens of major Chinese cities in China had been gagged. Yet she persisted — her eloquent facial expressions and body movements testified that she would never give in.
The court sentenced Zhang Zhan to four years of imprisonment. According to PRC law, she has the right to appeal her sentence. Zhang Zhan however sees her trial as a fraud from start to finish like something out of Franz Kafka’s novel-parable The Trial. Therefore, she went on a hunger strike. Two months later she was sent to a reform through labor (laogai) prison enterprise in Shanghai where she continued her hunger strike. She became emaciated and her life hangs by a thread. Many human rights organizations both inside and outside China have spoken out on her case. They fear that she will die in prison.
Threatening this cold-blooded regime with death can have no effect! Zhang Zhan herself doesn’t care if her hunger strike works. What she does care about is that she does not bow her head in submission. Now that all thoughts and actions expressing “civil disobedience” are considered criminal, she can only self-mutilate, hunger strike, and even die to express one’s natural human desire to pursue truth.
Nature — that is what people called it in ancient China. Westerners today call it “human nature”.
Zhang Zhan’s bravery and persistence arose from basic human nature. Are you, out of cowardice or fear, turning a blind eye and a deaf ear to the “human nature” of Zhang Zhan? If so, then consider this: you were born a human being. Are you no better than a dog that wails and struggles to the end?
Italy’s most famous journalist, Oriana Fallaci, ends her monumental work A Man with these words: “For me the most beautiful monument to human dignity is still the one I saw on a hill in the Peloponnesus. It was not a statue, it was not a flag, but three letters that in Greek signify No: OXI. What is the point of suffering and dying? Why? For this is the only way to survive as a man or as a woman — as a human being and not as a sheep. ”
Please stand with Zhang Zhan, this very gentle woman. She is the kind of person that Fallaci wrote about: the kind of person willing to pay with her life for her insistence that the truth about “the disaster caused by the Wuhan virus” is no less than important than the truth about the Chernobyl nuclear leak. As a poet and writer in exile for ten years, I want all my Western readers to understand that if the pursuit of truth and science is abandoned in favor of the commercial interests of globalization, then we have in our day made come true the words of the German philosopher Nietzsche : “God is dead! ”
“We have killed him!”
God is dead!!!
by Liao Yiwu, August 29 – September 3, 2021
Translated by David Cowhig
Nietzsche on ‘God is Dead’: full quote
God is dead. God remains dead. And we have killed him. How shall we comfort ourselves, the murderers of all murderers? What was holiest and mightiest of all that the world has yet owned has bled to death under our knives: who will wipe this blood off us? What water is there for us to clean ourselves? What festivals of atonement, what sacred games shall we have to invent? Is not the greatness of this deed too great for us? Must we ourselves not become gods simply to appear worthy of it?
A recent book by a Jordanian author has been translated from Arabic into Chinese. Translating the title is a bit tricky. I would understand it about perceiving one’s civilization as being backward in some respects compared with contemporary states that are richer and more powerful and trying to figure out how to catch up. A question that many Arabs and Chinese have long been discussing. Japan faced the same problem after the US gunboats appeared, the old order fell in 1868 and the aggressive modernization of Japan during the Meiji Restoration. Understooding, ‘catching up’ as a common concern of many civilizations after their often messy or bloody encounters with the superior technology and sophisticated organization of ‘The West’. Makes me think of “The Great Nations of Europe” by the famed historian Randy Newman.
This too has been a preoccupation of many Chinese since the late Qing Dynasty when it became obvious that ‘catching up’ with the West could be thought of, to borrow one of former Chinese Communist Party Secretary Jiang Zemin’s phrases, “a big systems engineering problem.”
Two reviews below of translations from Arabic into Chinese of Samir Ahmad’s books on lessons the Arab world can draw from China’s experience along with reflecting on the more recent historical experience of the Arab World’s encounter with the West over the past two centuries.
Reading Samir Ahmad’s Theory of Catching Up as a Civilization 2021-09-07
On August 15, 2021, a series of dazzling changes took place in Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan: on this day, the Taliban entered Kabul, Taliban representatives were discussing the “peaceful transfer of power” with the Afghan government, President Ghani The “exodus” to another country …… and on the other side, and the Taliban into Kabul at the same time, the U.S. military from the Afghan government forces to take over the security of Kabul airport to perform a major air evacuation. 16 morning, hundreds of Afghans rushed to the airport runway, surrounded the aircraft. They even “hung” onto the U.S. transport aircraft, expecting the U.S. transport aircraft to take them away ……
This scene reminds many people of the “Saigon moment” 46 years ago. When I saw this scene, the first thing that came to my mind was: in Afghanistan, the “model” approach to social transformation has once again gone bankrupt.
The so-called “modeling” is a term used by Samir Ahmad, the former director of the Amman
Cultural Bureau of the capital of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, chairman of the Cultural Affairs Committee of the Organization of Arab Cities, recipient of the Chinese Book Award for Special Contribution, and a renowned scholar, in his book “Catching Up on Civilization – The Future of the Arabs”. The Rise of China and the Future of the Arabs,” a concept used to describe the causes of the dilemma in the Arab-Islamic world.
According to the preface to the Chinese edition of “Catching Up on Civilization” written by Samir Ahmed, the Arabic edition of the book “”Catching Up on Civilization” was published in 2009 and was reprinted twice in 2012 and 2013. The fact that the same book was printed three times in four years shows how much it is valued among Arab readers.
The Chinese version of his new book 东方的复兴——“阿拉伯之春”的失败与中国崛起的前景 “The Revival of the East – The Failure of the Arab Spring and the Prospects for China’s Rise” has been translated by the translation team of the Arab Institute of Beijing Foreign Studies University and will be officially published by Beijing Normal University Press.
The book is another of Samir’s masterpieces, following his 2008 book “Catching Up on Civiliation”, which takes a “civilizational look” at the crisis in the Arab world and provides an in-depth analysis of the future of Sino-Arab relations.
Like Catching Up on Civilization, the original Arabic edition of The Revival of the East, published in Jordan in August 2018, has received widespread attention from Arab readers, has been reprinted three times in the past year, and has been included in the Jordanian Ministry of Culture’s National Reading Program.
The content of these two books has a strong continuity, since “”Catching Up on Civilization” is the author’s reflection on the plight of the Arab world before the dramatic changes in the Middle East in 2011 and his outlook on foreign relations, while “Revival in the East” is an interpretation and reflection on the evolution of the situation in the Arab world after the dramatic changes in the Middle East in 2011, as well as his observation and understanding of the development of Sino-Afghan relations in the new situation.
In my opinion, although Afghanistan is not part of the Arab world, it is part of the Islamic world with the Arab world and has similarities in many aspects. Therefore, these two books can serve as a perspective on Afghanistan from within the Islamic world and provide us with useful references.
The “Modeling” and “Non-Modeling” of the Middle East
Let’s start with “”Catching Up on Civilization”. At the heart of this book are two key words: “modeling” and “non-modeling.
Samir defines “schematization” by contrasting it with “non-schematization. The word “non-modal” is very important throughout the book, and it is a central concept throughout the book. Understanding this word is the main point of the book.
According to Samir’s explanation in the book, “China’s development model is actually ‘non-patterned,’ i.e., it does not use a fixed, sanctified model to measure various initiatives and plans in the development process.” (“Catching Up on Civilization – The Rise of China and the Future of the Arabs, Chinese Edition P. 68, Beijing Normal University Press, 1st edition, September 2014, same below) If we use the Chinese term, it means the basic principles of non-adherence to dogma, specific analysis of specific problems, independence and seeking truth from facts.
According to Samir’s view expressed in this book, the modern history of the Arab world should be counted from 1798, the landmark event of which was Napoleon’s expedition to Egypt that took place in that year. Although various European expeditions and invasions to the Middle East had occurred many times before, Napoleon’s expedition to Egypt had a special significance in Samir’s view.
Napoleon and Generals in Egypt, by Jean Leon Gerome
Because Napoleon’s expeditionary forces did not appear in Egypt as “conquerors” but as “liberators” who freed the Egyptian people from the rule of the Mamluk dynasty. Therefore, “Napoleon’s soldiers and counsellors did not treat the Egyptians harshly and cruelly either.” (P.13) Thus, the Arabs did not see the Napoleonic expeditionary forces as enemies; rather, the direct and close observation of the French who came to Egypt made the Arabs realize that Europe had changed significantly, that Europe had risen, and that the Arabs had fallen behind.
This concern of the Arabs for Europe soon materialized in action. In 1805 A.D., shortly after France withdrew from Egypt, the Muhammad Ali dynasty was founded in Egypt. Committed to implementing social reforms and reforming state institutions through learning from European countries, Muhammad Ali began sending foreign students to European countries, especially France, in 1809 in order to train relevant professionals. This move produced a community of thinkers and educators for Egypt, and thus the history of modern Arab thought began.
Among the thinkers who emerged at the beginning of the 19th century, Samir most highly regarded Rifa’a Rafi’a Taqtawi as “the most important enlightened thinker of the Arab revival”. This man was a religious scholar at the Al-Azhar Mosque, which was of great importance in the Islamic world, and in 1826 he became the imam of the Egyptian mission to France.
During his five-year stay in Paris from 1826 to 1831, he made a comprehensive observation of France in all fields of science, technology, thought, and society, and compared them with the teachings of Islam, and concluded that the French Enlightenment, represented by Rousseau, and the French social and political institutions established under his guidance, were the main reasons for the revival of France. These factors were not at all contrary to Islam and could be applied to the Egyptians, as well as to all Muslims who wanted to recreate their glory.
Upon his return to his country in 1831, Tahtawi compiled what he had seen and thought in Paris into a book: A Paris Profile, which was published in 1834. Muhammad Ali praised the book and directed that its original Arabic text and Turkish translation be issued to schools and administrative institutions at all levels. The book soon gained fame and became one of the most influential books in the cause of the Arab revival.
According to Samir, two points in particular are worthy of attention concerning the thought of Tahtawi.
First, Tahtawi’s ideas arose in the early 19th century, before the massive colonization of the Arab world by European states had begun, and before the Arabs saw Europe as a dangerous object that they had to guard against, but rather as a mere object of observation and learning. In other words, Tahtawi’s thought reflects the original face of modern Arab revival thought.
Second, the importance that Taqtawi attached to the ideas of the French Enlightenment was not because he believed that these ideas were a priori (as opposed to Islamic doctrine) correct in themselves, but rather that they could help Muslims pursue their own interests and achieve social progress. The only prerequisite he set for the use of French thought was that it should not be contrary to the Shari’a. On this basis, he argued that “truth does not matter where it comes from. As long as it is beneficial to Muslims and to the revival and progress of Arab societies, it should be taken and used. In Samir’s view, this approach of “not being superior, not being bookish, but only being practical” is “non-modular”.
This led Samir to conclude that before the European colonial invasion that changed the image of Europe in the Arab world, the “original” Arab revival movement was “non-modular,” that is, free from ideological constraints and adapting the experience of others to fit the Arab context and culture. This means that it is not bound by ideology, but takes the experience of others and adapts it to the Arab context and culture – especially the moral code – and then uses it for its own purposes, with national revival as the highest goal. According to Samir, this is the only correct path for the revival of the Arab and Islamic world.
Can the Arab world revive and regain its glory if it follows the “non-modular” path advocated by Taqtawi? Samir’s answer to this question is that we will never know the answer.
From the mid-19th century onward, “European states, starting from the edge of the Ottoman Empire, gradually encroached upon the Arab states, eventually turning the entire Arab world into a European colony. ” (P.9) According to Samir, this reality led to a fundamental change in the problems facing the Arabs: “For the Arabs, the most pressing issue was no longer how to achieve revival, but how to resist European invasion and colonial expansion.” (P.13)
Editorial Revival in the East: The Failure of the Arab Spring and the Prospects for China’s Rise
Jiandao [Seeing the Way] December 17, 2020
The two books focus on the history of China’s revival and the reasons for the long Arab decline, which limited the recovery of Arab state power due to its ideology and development model
On December 15, 2020, the Chinese version of the book “The Revival of the East – The Failure of the Arab Spring and the Prospects of China’s Rise” (later referred to as “The Revival of the East”) was published. This book written by Samir Khayr Ahmed, a renowned Jordanian scholar, chairman of the Cultural Affairs Committee of the Arab Cities Organization and recipient of the Chinese Book Award for Special Contribution. The Chinese version of the book “The Revival of the East – The Failure of the Arab Spring and the Prospects of China’s Rise” (later referred to as “The Revival of the East”) was translated by the translation team of the Arab Institute of Beijing Foreign Studies University and will be officially published and distributed by Beijing Normal University Press for domestic readers. In the context of the current changes in the Middle East and the growing importance of Sino-Arab relations, it is necessary and useful to understand and study the positions and views of Arab scholars through this book.
A Historical Analysis of the Crisis of Arab Civilization
The Arab nation has created a glorious civilization throughout history and made indelible contributions to the progress of human society. The constant colonization, invasion, occupation, intervention, and contention by the West interrupted the reforms and innovations carried out by the learned men represented by Muhammad Ali and Taqtawi. Instead of blaming God, Samir believes that the main reason why the Arab nation has not been able to overcome the crisis and solve the “hundred-year Middle East problem” is that it has not built a development model that fits its own characteristics. “The colonizers exploited the Arabs and tried to influence them with their culture and ideology. But this is not the fundamental reason why the Arab nation has not been able to revive itself; it is the choice of the Arabs themselves that has dominated the course of their history.
Many Arabs, desperate to get out of their predicament as soon as possible, tend to want to do everything in one go and to solve all their problems in one “package” in order to achieve their national renaissance. In this mindset, what was once historically pursued as “positive borrowing” is increasingly being transformed into “blind imitation. More seriously, “imitation” – imitation of the past or imitation of the West – has gradually become a way of thinking that has formed the national psyche and character of the contemporary Arab nation, and has become a distinctive feature of the development process of each Arab country today. For the Arabs, there is no difference between slavishly imitating the West and admiring the past. What this comes down to is worship of “the other” to the exclusion of groping towards one’s own path ahead and finding mehtods that suit one self.
Modernization is not a single-choice question. The diversity of historical conditions determines the diversity of development paths chosen by countries. The Arab proverb says: ‘You know where it itches only by your own nails.’ [Note: perhaps
‘ God help him who has no nails to scratch himself with.’ Said of the weak person who has no helper. H.
In the exploration of development paths, there is no way out of copying, imitation is easy to get lost, and only practice makes true knowledge. The development path of a country can only be decided by the people of that country, based on their own historical heritage, cultural traditions, and level of economic and social development.” The secret of China’s success lies in finding a development path that is in line with its own characteristics. Meanwhile the greatest crisis facing Arab civilization is how to get rid of dependence in development and “blind imitation”, how to actively learn from the advanced achievements of human civilization and its own outstanding cultural heritage, and how to find a solution to the “hundred-year question” on the basis of frankly facing its own problems and objective analysis. To find the “Arab model” is a matter of solving that “hundred-year question”.
A profound reflection on the Arab Spring
Since 2011, the turmoil in the Arab world has continued to intensify, and the Arab “spring” that the Arab people had hoped for has not come, but the Arab “winter” has lingered. “The Arab Spring has not solved the existing problems of the Arab World. It has become the catalyst for the simultaneous eruption of its pre-existing problems. Samir made a profound critique of the problems behind the Arab Spring and believed that the governments and ruling parties of Arab countries should reflect deeply on their own development philosophy and choice of path. In his conversations with Samir, he repeatedly emphasized that the reason why the Chinese Communist Party has won the heartfelt support of the Chinese people is that the Chinese Communist Party, as the ruling party, has always “never forgotten its original intention and kept its mission in mind” and always set the people’s aspiration for a better life as its goal, and has set effective principles, programs and agendas.
The rulers of many Arab countries, on the other hand, have devoted themselves to building their own authoritarianism and have only served the interests of their own families, tribes, sects, and parties, reducing “improving the welfare of all people” to a slogan. Samir differs from many Arab scholars who analyze dramatic changes in the Arab countries from the perspective of military seizure of power, strongman politics, hereditary power, and the lack of the rule of law. Samir believes that these are only the symptoms. Cultural factors are at the root of the problem. The rulers of the Arab countries have not been able to transform or integrate tradition and modernity. They get exhausted from incessant confrontations with internal and external pressures. They have been unable to integrate society and so must constantly resort to tribalism or religious factionalism to protect the position are ruler and the legitimacy of their regimes.
During recent decades the gap between the Arab nation and the rest of the world has widened. The Arab nation has become increasingly backward and marginalized in the modernization process which is necessarily based on national independence, freedom, justice, solidarity, and progress. According to Samir, the outbreak of the Arab Spring was the inevitable result of the absence of a common agenda based on shared beliefs and common interests in many Arab countries.
An enthusiastic vision of Sino-Arab relations
In 2007, when Samir and his Arab friends were invited to China for the first time and strolled through the streets of Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen, he could not help but ponder how China and the Arab world faced the same crises more than a hundred years ago, but why there was such a wide gap more than a hundred years later. In the foreword to “Catching Up on Civilization,” Samir writes, “The reader may find this book to be very enthusiastic about China. The book “The Revival of the East” once again shows the author’s enthusiasm for China and further explains the prospects of Sino-Arab relations in the eyes of Arab scholars. And this time, in The Renaissance of the East, Samir clearly enriches and deepens his knowledge and understanding, and takes a higher strategic perspective on the development of Sino-Arab relations.
In his view, this means not only greater trade, investment, and human mobility between China and the Arab countries, but also better access to China’s increasingly sophisticated production capacity and technological achievements. In addition, Samir advocated that Arab countries should strengthen their strategic partnership with China in a comprehensive manner, and believed that the so-called “strategic” relationship should not only focus on the material and technical aspects, but also strengthen the high level of mutual appreciation of civilization from the ideological and civilizational perspectives.
Samir repeatedly stressed that “fundamentally, I am against all material and spiritual dependencies, but learning from China’s successful experience is of great benefit to the Arab countries. He believes that one of the important factors in the great achievements of New China in the past 70 years since its establishment, especially in the past 40 years of reform and opening up, is that China has always pursued “active learning,” “creative learning” and “timely adjustment. “timely adjustment” and “practice as the only criterion to test the truth”. He summarizes sixteen Chinese experiences that can be used by Arab countries arguing that there is a more important, more fundamental principle beyond these sixteen. That is the “non-modularity [or non-model model]”, i.e. “China, while adhering to certain basic principles, avoids going into some kind of ideological confinement that does not correspond to the actual situation. One could even say that the process of China’s development and rejuvenation is itself a process of dealing with various trends of thought and avoiding their adverse effects in order to achieve its core goals. China has transcended the stereotypical model of one or more ideologies to achieve integration and innovation.”
According to Samir, the so-called learning from China should focus on the “art” of Chinese development, but more importantly, it should learn from the “way” of China’s success, and the question of “way” is an urgent one for Arabs to address. The question of “the way” is what the Arabs need to solve urgently.
Finally, the author of the book expresses his confidence that the two civilizations will move forward together, because the Arabs have never been more concerned about China, and the “Belt and Road” initiative shows that China is ready for “China’s dream – shared by the world”.
A discussion of the new workers’ literature movement in China exemplified by the journal New Workers’ Literature edited by Fan Yusu. Fan’s autobiographical account “I am Fan Yusu” (translated this blog) got wide attention when it was published in 2017.
Here I have smoothed out a DeepL machine translation though it remains rough in spots.
Source：Chuàngzuò píng tán [Criticism of Literary Creations]《创作评谭》
by Xu Gang 2021年03月30日
The concept of “new workers” can be roughly traced back to Lü Tu’s book China’s New Workers: Lost and Rising. The book intentionally avoided the term “migrant workers”, which was popular at that time but highly discriminatory, but could not simply replace them with the working class of the socialist era, so they had to be named “new workers” or “new workers group. New Workers” or “New Workers’ Group”. Therefore, the so-called “new workers’ literature” is not a completely new thing. Whether it is the “migrant workers’ literature” that emerged at the beginning of the new century or the spectacular “new workers’ literature” of today, the issue of endorsement or self-representation of “writing from the bottom” has always been a topic of concern in the academic world. The issue of the representation or self-representation of “underclass writing” has always been a topic of concern to the academic community. In this regard, Marx’s words in his article “The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte” : “They cannot speak with their own voice, their stories must be written by others.”
This has long been a problem that must be faced when discussing this topic. Indeed, when we look back at the “underclass writing” boom of over ten years ago, we can easily find that the buzz at that time was more of a trend within “pure literature” and was not a real “voice” for the “underclass”. The “bottom of society” does not really have a “voice”. Although we are glad to read Wang Anyi‘s “Planting Red Water Chestnuts Above and Lotus Roots Below“, Liu Zhenyun‘s “My Name is Liu Yuejin” and Jia Pingwa‘s “Gladness” and we now find that the “migrant workers” have finally become the main characters of the long-lost stories. Still, we have to admit immediately that such literary “endorsement” is actually far from the real voice of the underclass. However, we have to admit immediately that such literary “endorsement” is actually far from the real bottom. It is worth pointing out that there was no lack of adequate theoretical discussions on the “underclass”, ranging from Gramsci in Italy to Chatterjee in India. But the contradiction between life experience and literary talent eventually led “underclass writing” to a kind of wishful thinking fantasy. People apparently prefer to believe in the self-representation of the “underclass” and are suspicious of all forms of “endorsement”, so that for a long time the identity of the author becomes an important reference for writing. In this sense, among those who have the talent to write, we always expect more from those who have special experiences.
For this reason, many writers have aroused widespread interest in “pure literature”. For example, Liaoning writer Gui Jin, a crane operator [Note: See article on Gui Jin via Google Translate] who writes novels, once attracted the attention of researchers of “underclass writing. This is because, given his identity and the content of his writing, his works should contain common material for underclass narratives. In fact, Gui Jin’s novels often revolve around daily life at a steel mill. The humble protagonists are mostly workers and their sons and younger brothers. This the main framework of workers’ literature with which we are all familiar. Yet this is not always the case; as Gui Jin says, he does not speak for the workers. He only embodies the hardships of life and the difficulties of making a living from the perspective of individual survival. Some researchers would like to see the young writers as expressing the historical consciousness of these sons and brothers of the working class through their histories. This is too heavy a burden for these young writers to bear. They in fact avoid telling tales of frequent deaths in industrial accidents as material in telling the stories of the pains and of the various harms the underclass has suffered.
In other words, although the novel is addresses a hard social reality, the author intends to transcend the monotonous social dimension of the underclass novel and instead pursue its broader and more profound spiritual connotations. As Gui Jin says, he wants to find freedom of heart and mind in the poetry of words. Thus, he is not grounded in solving the problem of reality, but addressese the problem of the soul. He strives to integrate the dimension of the self within the framework of a grand narrative. As a result, he can sometimes have an illusory and ethereal “literary accent”. This makes understanding the novel more complicated. Thus, despite his status as a crane operator, Gui Jin’s is clearly inadquate as an example of “writing from the bottom”. Similarly, the three “post-80s” writers who have recently gained popularity, the “Three Swordsmen of Tiexi”, the northeastern “backwaters”, also suffer from almost the same misundertanding on the part of their readers. Similar to people’s expectations of Gui Jin, researchers have always tried to link the three writers’ creations to such grand terms and historical backgrounds as the restructuring of state-owned enterprises, the “decline” of the Northeast China rustbelt, and the historical consciousness of the sons of the working class, not realizing that for these young writers, all that is too heavy a burden for them to bear. They themselves flee from those labels and interpretations.
Occasionally, there are individuals in the field of “pure literature” who, with their particular writing experience, bring a sense of freshness. But soon, this “novelty” will gradually disappear as the author’s experience is exhausted. What can be discussed here is the creation of Zhou Zixiang, a young writer from Shaanxi Province. The first thing of interest is, of course, the author’s experience. She has worked in several factories in Singapore and Hong Kong, and once wrote novels secretly in the workshop of an electronics factory as a female worker. These are stories about her wanderings in foreign countries and the hardships of labor, so of course she can be regarded as a practitioner of “workers’ literature”.
Experiences like hers are not common among the younger generation of writers. It is just this experience that has forged her valuable uniqueness. It is undeniable that Zhou Zixiang’s representative novels, such as “Wang Ran Ji”, “The End of the World Kitchen King”, and “Slow Boat to Hong Kong“, all show her personal experience to a greater or lesser extent. This special experience has become a symbolic capital in a sense, especially in such an era when the author’s experience and literary education are highly homogenized and the breakthrough of “pure literature” has become extremely difficult. In this sense, although Zhou Zixiang’s writing is a bit coarse and clichéd, it still shows an indelible uniqueness.
This uniqueness here lies in the author’s very careful observation of the underclass, and even a feeling of being right there with them, natural and genuine, without deliberately exalting them. Generally speaking, there are two different ways to imagine the underclass: on the one hand, it emphasizes the vitality of the people and idealizes the morality of the civil world. On the one hand, it emphasizes the vitality of the people, and idealizes the morality of the world of the common people. As the saying goes, “The righteous are always the ones who butcher dogs, and the negative characters are the bookish types”. The other imagination is based on the perspective of national critique, that is, the opposing perspectives of the so-called elite intellectuals and the vulgar. The vulgar are the objects of sympathy and criticism of the elite intellectuals, as the saying goes, “mourning their misfortune along with anger at their servility”, which emphasizes the vulgar and abject character of the common people.
Zhou Zixiang’s novel actually effectively fuses the two. In The Sky’s End Kitchen King 野水：周子湘《天涯厨王》 [Note: see article on this book via Google Translate], there are positive and optimistic characters like Li Xiuniang, who is a very infectious and bright personality, and there are also ungrateful people like Duan Yimeng, who embodies the degradation of the lower class. More importantly, when discussing the degradation of the underclass, Zhou Zixiang is able to analyze the society from the social reality. We notice that almost all the tragedies of the “underclass” in the novel come from the characters’ obsession – they all want to be decent people. In “The Slow Boat to Hong Kong”, Jasmine, who is not satisfied with her job as a waitress in a restaurant, wants to put on a professional dress and become a secretary, and is willing to sell her body to achieve this goal. This unrealistic self-positioning leads to a tragic personal fate. In “Wang Ran”, Achang is not satisfied with opening a small supermarket, but wants to learn from successful people and attend classes at the Chamber of Commerce, and even fantasizes about becoming a member of the district-level Chinese People’s Consulatative Congress. And Li Mengyao and her sister cheat Achang out of his money, but only for the pursuit of pleasure and a trip to Bali. In the past, we have often seen this kind of bridge, that behind the “evil” there are often good motives such as stealing money to pay for their parents’ medical treatment. In Zhou Zixiang’s case, she ruthlessly shatters this illusion, reflecting an extremely cold side.
As we can see above, Zhou’s novels certainly reflect an exciting uniqueness, but as the author’s life changes, the power of this distinctiveness slowly begins to dissipate. Yes, “pure literature” will always be confronted with many such writers, and the specificity of their identities often fades away as they exhaust in their writings the sum of their experiences. It is no wonder that the special experience will gradually become known, and the excitement about their writing will fade. This is probably a kind of institutionalized “culling” power inherent in “pure literature”. In this way, the issue of self-representation of the so-called “new workers’ literature” becomes more urgent. People have been expecting the real “new workers” to tell the stories of the underclass without having to speak for themselves. However, this can only be achieved through the intervention of the media and the opportunity of certain events. It is obvious here that poetry, a simple and intuitive form, is often more effective than fiction, which is a more complex art form.
Therefore, it is important to talk about the significance of “My Verses” here. Qin Xiaoyu‘s “My Psalms” project includes a series of activities such as book publishing, film creation, workers’
poetry meetings, and workers’ poetry awards. All of these activities are highly dependent on the packaging and operation of information media, which inevitably reduces them to the landscape of the consumer era in a certain sense. However, even so, there is still a certain pure and beautiful desire left here, that is, as Qin Xiaoyu said, he hopes to pass on the touching and enlightening poetry of workers to more people, “bringing the poetry of the bottom from the margins to the spotlight” . The six authors included in Qin Xiaoyu’s “My Poems” series have since become familiar to the audience: Laojing, a coal miner working deep in the earth; Chen Nianxi, an alleyway blaster; Tiebone, a construction worker; Wu Xia, a female garment factory worker; Jike Ayu, a Yi duck-filling worker; and the deceased After 90″ workers Xu Lizhi. They are all extremely ordinary workers and excellent poets at the same time. Writing in simple Chinese, they write about their labor and express their sorrow and joy in different ways, reintroducing the long-absent “workers’ poetry” in contemporary literature.
Throughout the works in “My Verses”, it is clear that they contain thoughts on the fate of the “new workers”, and numerous wandering poems are filled with the hardships of living, the imprisonment of the mind, loneliness, bewilderment, and the entanglement of life and death. The depth of their experience, the thickness of their emotions, and the power of their directness to the hearts of people will eventually make those silent workers gradually get rid of their “anonymity” and become “individuals with souls”. Let’s take a look at Chen Nianxi’s song “Fracture”: “My head hurts like a fracture when I wake up in the morning / It’s an extra gift from the big machine / It’s not the fault of steel / It’s because my nerves are old and fragile / I don’t dare to look at my life / It’s hard and black / It has the sharp corners of a wind pick / When a stone touches it, it bleeds / I spend my middle age at a depth of 5,000 meters / I fracture the rock layer again and again / By doing so, I put my life back together / My tiny relatives are far away My tiny relatives are far away at the foot of Shang Shan / They are sick and covered with dust / How much of my middle age I cut down / How much of their old age I can prolong / I have three tons of explosives in my body / They are the fuse part / Just last night / I blew up like a rock.” It can be seen that the author tries to pursue equality and dignity by means of poetry, thus giving birth to a new sense of subjectivity and political consciousness. This is undoubtedly conducive to breaking the monopoly of the cultural elite on literature and linking the “voice” of the underclass with social justice and historical truth.
In this regard, Chen Nianxi‘s identity and his creative works are already shocking enough. However, it is the deceased “post-90s” worker Xu Lizhi who inscribes the “new workers’ poetry” on the scene of contemporary literary history in a more melancholic way. After the Foxconn “11 consecutive suicide jumps” shocked people in both China and abroad, this young factory poet used his leap to “eventize” the self-representation of “new workers” again. Compared to the poetry writers who have relied on extreme personalized experiences or even death to gain the attention of the media age, more new workers have actually achieved self-representation in a relatively moderate way.
For example, nonfiction literature, which has been in full swing in recent years, has played a crucial role in the emergence of women workers from the “working girls” to Fan Yusu and other groups. As early as 2011, in order to gain a deeper understanding of the life of factory girls in Dongguan, poet Ding Yan worked in several factories, and after more than 200 days of living and interviewing, she recorded the day-to-day mechanical labor of ordinary female workers who went from the countryside to the city, the flourishing and destruction of their youth, love and dreams, and the questioning of the tender souls on the assembly line about the modern industrial flood. These real and profound factory lives are the source of the non-fiction work Factory Girls by the American writer Leslie Chang. However, Chinese are more familiar with is “The Story of a Working Girl” by Zheng Xiaoqiong, a “working poet”. The uniqueness of “The Story of Women Workers” is that it is both a large group poem about women workers and a historical record after investigation and interview, which can be said to be a perfect combination of poetry and non-fiction writing. In Zheng Xiaoqiong’s poems, the names of the workers are solemnly used as the titles of the poems, which means that every nameless female worker actually has her own name and individual fate and dignity, which makes the voices of those who were originally silent become concrete and vivid.
The democratization of literature that nonfiction strives to promote gives all ordinary people the opportunity to present themselves to the public through words, and in 2017, the WeChat public article “I am Fan Yusu” made people remember Fan Yusu, a female domestic worker. As an extremely ordinary member of the tens of thousands of migrant workers drifting and working in Beijing, Fan Yusu only has a junior high school diploma, but this does not prevent her from expressing herself in a unique way. “My life is like a book that cannot bear to read. Fate has given me a very clumsy binding indeed.” This is the opening line of “I am Fan Yusu”. Although her words are not lacking in rhetorical power, and even the phrases with a flash of light are particularly gripping, her words still contain more of a calmness and gentleness, and she just plainly records her story along the way for more than ten years, conquering countless readers with its true power.
The fact that “I am Fan Yusu” has become an internet “hit” and even caused many debates in the literary circle is obviously inseparable from the fact that the media and events have once again pushed the “new worker group” to the forefront of public attention. For most people, the richness of social life embodied in the uniqueness of personal experience is a great attraction. On the other hand, just as Fan Yusu said, “I have conveyed love and dignity to every weak person I met. They are just like me”. What really moves people here is not only the suffering itself, but also the process and traces of human beings’ struggle with suffering, and the broad and deep love that emerges from the transcendence and understanding of suffering, which is what fascinates middle-class audiences immensely.
Thus, the social visibility of the “new workers’ group” brought by Fan Yusu makes us rethink the unresolved issue of self-representation. After Fan Yusu, the “New Workers’ Literature” magazine of the “Picun Literary Group” has also enabled more and more laborers to discover for themselves their own literature.
After Fan Yusu, the “New Workers’ Literature” magazine of the “Picun Literary Group” has enabled more and more workers to find their own literary expression. Although the form of their expression is still a bit rudimentary and crude, it does not seem to prevent the writers from expressing their sincere feelings. In any case, this kind of difficult self-expression is worth waiting for.
 Qin Xiaoyu, “Taking Poetry as Evidence,” Frittering Zhi – Preface, Tai Bai Wen Yi Press, 2019, p. 2.
Thanks to the magic of Google Translate even the scandoilliterates among you may find interesting Linus Fredriksson’s article on historical nihilism and the Chinese film industry. Now on the Swedish website Kinamedia.
For more on historical nihilism in China see also:
“The land of a people is destroyed by the destruction of their history” (灭 人 之 国 ， 必先 去 其 史). The spirit of this statement is like a recurring mantra for Chinese leader Xi Jinping.
President Xi has many times before placed great emphasis on avoiding the mistakes that led to the collapse of the Soviet Union. One of the reasons for the fall of the Soviet Union, in Xi Jinping’s view , is the failure to control the flow of information and narratives about its own history.
The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) seeks to counteract this by branding the abomination of opposing the party’s interpretation of history as “historical nihilism.”
This would be done, among other things, by the Cyberspace Administration of China, the Chinese authority for Internet control, began to use a reporting system to report incorrect theories about Chinese history or interpretations that somehow blacken the time under the rule of the Chinese Communist Party.
About a month later, over 2 million posts on Chinese social media claiming to be history-naive had been deleted.
The posts were deleted, among other things, on the following premises as a basis:
1) The content distorts party history, the history of the new China, the history of China’s opening up and reforms and about China’s socialist development.
2) The content attacks China’ss leaders, the CCP’s political thinking (指导 思想) and general party principles.
3) The content blackens the names of heroes and martyrs.
4) The content denies the grandeur of Chinese culture, revolutionary culture and progressive socialist culture.
“He who controls the past controls the future.” It is not without reason that George Orwell’s words echo in the ears when one first hears of historical nihilism.
And it becomes more Orwellian, when Xie Maosong from the National Strategy Institute at Qinghua University says that historical nihilism is, among other things, an attempt by countries in the West (read: USA) to “bully” (骂) China.
One way of committing historical nihilism is said to be to use one’s own country’s values to interpret the situation in Hong Kong, Tibet and Xinjiang, among others.
Xie Maosong goes on to tell how this is part of an ongoing cultural and spiritual war against China, which is due to the fact that China is now threatening American world hegemony. One way to strengthen historical nihilism is through culture, and especially film.
One example is how the distribution of Lu Chuan’s film The Last Supper (王 的 盛宴, 2012) was withdrawn, after which the content was completely revised. The film was completely redone, and the original can in principle not be found anywhere today.
The original version is said to have been censored mainly because the power struggle between the incoming emperor of the Han dynasty, Liu Bang, and those who helped him overthrow the Qin dynasty, would be an allegory for the power struggle that took place in 2012 between Xi Jinping and his political rival Bo Xilai.
Now, almost ten years later, another part of the film has told the truth about Xi Jinping’s rule.
In one scene, the supreme minister of the court – an office with the title 丞相 – talks about how the story of Liu Bang’s path to power should be written, after which the Empress interrupts him to say that the story has already been written – even the parts that have not yet taken place .
A deliberate distortion of the truth is a must to secure Liu Bang’s legacy for the future. But how close to the truth do you get in a movie?
As previously mentioned here on Kinamedia, it is difficult to interpret how censorship will be exercised under Xi Jinping’s rule. Director Feng Xiaogang seems to have come too close: when his film Youth (芳华, 2017) was to premiere, it was suddenly withdrawn and then reappeared. Some claimed that the problem was the depiction of the war between China and Vietnam in the late 1970s.
The same was true of Guan Hu’s The Eight Hundred (八佰, 2020), which depicts part of the Battle of Shanghai during World War II, in which only soldiers from the Nationalist Party’s army participated in the battles against the Japanese.
The film premiered later than originally planned, and with suspiciously much less screen time of the nationalist flag, which today is better known as the Taiwan flag.
The so-called truth is thus not primarily about avoiding brutality or politically sensitive topics. To understand what “truth” means in this context, take another look at the four points above about historical nihilism.
So what kind of historical film can we expect from the Chinese in the future? If you look at the last two major film productions in the historical film genre and one of the TV series – which is made a whole bunch of every year – these are stories that can simply be classified as pure propaganda.
The films The Pioneer (革命者) and 1921 as well as the TV series The Age of Awakening (觉醒 年代) all share a common factor. They take place shortly before and after the founding of the CCP, and they are in principle completely free from internal conflicts among the historical figures who can be linked to the establishment and development of the Communist Party.
In The Pioneer, Li Dazhao is portrayed throughout the film as a saint, often to the tunes of the International. The Age of Awakening is like a single long cozy family reunion, which is occasionally interspersed with political slogans.
A film that deals with a more contemporary story is The Captain (中国 机长, 2019), where the premise of the story is different but the methods for storytelling are the same. In The Captain, the plane in danger becomes a symbol of that China. However, the captain – who we learn early in the film is a member of the CCP – manages to steer the passengers towards safety.
With the 100th anniversary of the CCP’s founding this year on July 7, the intensification of streamlining history writing has become apparent. And there is no indication that this escalating ambition to control Chinese history will wane.
If postmodernism gave us the tools to see history as a series of events with a variety of interpretive possibilities, historical nihilism gives the CCP a veto to put an end to all forms of interpretation of Chinese history that are not in their own favor.
This, combined with a watertight censorship system, does not bode well for the future of the Chinese film industry.
Of course, some will personally benefit from this future, but the rest of us can expect a stagnation in Chinese film in terms of new ways of expressing and exploring different genres.
With a little luck, we can at least get more hyperaction with Wu Jing, where the so-called wolf warrior mentality is given even more space.
Linus Fredriksson has a far-reaching interest in Chinese film and culture. He wrote his master’s thesis in Chinese on nationalist film in China in the 1940s, and his master’s thesis in Film Studies on Chinese sci-fi film. Linus can be contacted via email .
Reading this latest policy statement on education does make one think the Chinese Communist Party does keep on putting the total in totalitarian. For a discussion of totalitarianism in China see my previous posting Is China Totalitarian or Authoritarian?
The Chinese Communist Party and government are currently cracking down on private cram schools and private after-school tutoring students.
Many Chinese parents in China’s rapidly growing middle class see as the key for their children’s future. NPR’s Emily Feng reported on this in September 2021:
BEIJING — They schedule their children’s days in 15-minute increments. They scour online forums and swap tips on the most exclusive tutors and best sports coaches. Some even buy second homes next to the best public schools.
Forget tiger moms. These are China’s jiwa, or “chicken” parents, who are known for their attentive — some say obsessive — parenting style. The term is used to describe aggressive helicopter parenting and comes from an unproven Chinese-medicine treatment dating back to the 1950s in which a person is injected with fresh chicken blood to stimulate energy.
On the crackdown, read, for example the Financial Times August 2021 article Private school owners forced to hand institutions over to Chinese state. Consider also the anger of China’s young people at an intense and exhausting educational preparation that can often seem to lead nowhere — the so-called Lying Flat tangping people (a nascent hippy movement?) Chinese commentators have written quite a lot of interesting articles about that movement this summer. On my blog I translated:
The other half of the equation is what is going in now that the private sector is being forced out of education. The Chinese Communist Party and PRC government joint circular notice below discusses “Parent School” jiazhang xuexiao 家长学校 and that after-school school services shall come to an end at the same time as local workers get off work.
I took this as a key paragraph:
By 2025 the construction rate of parents’ schools [jiazhang xuexiao] will reach 90% in urban communities and 80% in rural communities. The standardized construction level of parents’ schools in primary and secondary schools and kindergartens is greatly improved. The role of family education and family style construction in grass-roots social governance is ever more prominent, the level of culture of family members and social civilization is further enhanced, and the new socialist family civilization of love for the country and family, love for one other, upward mobility and sharing is promoted.
Concerns About Growing Inequality in Chinese Society
Not to say that there aren’t good things about these efforts to strengthen public education and the primary and secondary levels. Perhaps like the Head Start program in the US, this will improve pre-school educations, especially for the many parents who can’t afford private schools. Higher education in China is tilted towards the children of the wealthy, as it is in the United States where wealthier parents who can afford to send their children to expensive private schools or afford the expensive houses in the wealthier districts that can afford to finance excellent public schools. The relative chances of rural Chinese to get into higher education have been decreasing in recent decades even as the absolute numbers of rural kids in higher education has been increasing. Perhaps this might end up rebalancing the rural/urban balance which has long been the axis of inequality in China. Inequalities in educational and employment opportunitiesand income and the frustrations and resentments arising therefrom are a Chinese problem too. Perhaps the Party decided to put Communist back in its name, to fight creeping capitalism, and to stop being merely totalitarian.
What are the parent schools? I found a Baidu Encyclopedia (China’s analog to the Wikipedia) article about them. It seems particularly interesting since it seems to have prepared the ground for the current shift away from private school and private cram school education in order to strengthen the Communist Party’s monoploy on education. In China both the educational system as well as the state-controlled (well, by post publication censorship — that is intimidated into submission) media are integral parts of the Party’s propaganda bath. Here is a DeepL machine translation of that article.
Parent school refers to a form of amateur education that mainly targets parents of infants, toddlers, primary and secondary school students, with the main content of imparting scientific knowledge and methods of home education. The mission is to promote the renewal of family education concepts; to cooperate with the implementation of school education; to help parents master modern scientific knowledge and methods of family education; and to create a suitable family education environment for the growth of their children. It is usually mostly run by primary and secondary schools, women’s federations, maternal and child health institutions (institutes), family education research associations and other departments.  Family education is an important part of modern national education, the basis of school education and social education, and has a special and important role in the ideological and moral construction of minors. Parent school is an important place to publicize and popularize the knowledge of family education and improve the quality of parents, and is the main position and main channel to guide the promotion of family education.  Chinese name Parent School Foreign name Jia Zhang Xue Xiao
On Further Strengthening the Implementing the Policy on Strengthening Family Oriented Education 2021-08-28
Propaganda Department of the Chinese Communist Party
Central Civilization Office
Communist Party Central Commission for Discipline Inspection organs
Chinese Communist Party (CPC) Organization Department
Ministry of Education
National Women’s Federation
jointly print and issue “On implementing the Opinion on further strengthening the families, family education and the moral climate of families education family style construction of the implementation of the views” sent to the provinces, autonomous regions, municipalities directly under the Central Government and Provinces, autonomous regions, municipalities directly under the Central Government and Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps Party Committee Propaganda Department, Civilization Office, Discipline Inspection Commission organs, Party Committee Organization Department, Supervision Committee, Education Department (Education Commission), Women’s Federation∶
Today we print and issue to you “On the further strengthening of family education family style construction of the implementation of the views”. Please take into account the actual local conditions as you implement this Opinion.
Central Propaganda Department of the Communist Party of China
Central Civilization Office
Central Commission for Discipline Inspection organs
Organization Department of the CPC Central Committee
State Supervision Commission Ministry of Education
All-China Women’s Federation
June 30, 2021
Opinions on the Implementation of Further Strengthening the Construction of Family Education and Family Style
In order to thoroughly implement General Secretary Xi Jinping’s important remarks on focusing on the construction of family education and family style, implement the national “14th Five-Year Program” objectives and tasks, promote the core socialist values in the family to take root, give full play to the construction of family education and family style in the training of the new generation, promote the good family style, strengthen the important role of grassroots social governance, gather the strength of hundreds of millions of families to strive for a new era, to advance a new journey, now put forward The following comments.
The general requirements of the new era of family education and family ethics construction
Guided by Xi Jinping thought on socialism with Chinese characteristics in the new era, the comprehensive implementation of the 19th CPC National Congress and the second, third, fourth and fifth plenary sessions of the 19th CPC Central Committee we are implementing new development concepts for the new era based on the stage of development at which we have now arrived. In building a new pattern of development, we take as our bottom line the cultivation and practice of the core values of socialism. We will build cultured families, implement scientific education, and make passing down wholesome family styles as our main focus. We will strengthen the family style of party members and leading cadres. We will strengthen the construction of party members and leading cadres, highlight the keys to children’s moral education, strengthen education and guidance, practice and cultivation, as well as institutional safeguards.
Adhere to the overall leadership of the Party, improve the leadership system and working mechanism of unified leadership of the Party Committee, the Party and the government. All departments shall perform their duties and responsibilities, and all sectors of society shall participate in the construction of the correct direction of family education and family ethics.
Adhere to the leading role of socialist core values as the basis of requirements for national, social and personal values through the whole process of family teaching and family style construction, guide family members to form the ideology, spirituality, cultured style, behavior norms to meet the requirements of the new era.
Adhere to righteousness and innovation, establish a new style of righteousness and eliminate the old rules and bad habits, inherit the excellent Chinese traditional culture, continue promoting the red family style, promote the new era of civilization, and constantly promote the content, means, carriers and grassroots work innovation, perpetuate the family teaching and family style construction vitality and vigor.
The government will insist on problem orientation, address the outstanding problems of family education and family style construction, implement precise, targeted measures and make long-term efforts, and to actively respond to the people’s new expectations for a better life.
Adhere to the common construction and sharing, have the masses play the main role, absorb the participation of social forces, strengthen the effective coordination of departments, the formation of family education and family culture construction synergy, so that hundreds of millions of families shall share the fruits of development.
After sustained and unremitting efforts, over the next five years as we support the development of the family policies and regulations continue to improve, the whole society focus on family education and family culture construction atmosphere has become ever more intense. The influence and appeal of family civilization construction activities shall be enhanced, the number of typical families cultivated shall be doubled, the exemplary role of Party members and leading cadres in the construction of family style shall be given full play, and the family concept of the new era shall be vigorously promoted. The concept of family education is deeply rooted in people’s hearts. The family education guidance service system covering urban and rural areas shall be constantly improved, the mechanism of coordinated parenting between families, schools and communities is ever more sound.
By 2025 the construction rate of parents’ schools [jiazhang xuexiao] will reach 90% in urban communities and 80% in rural communities. The standardized construction level of parents’ schools in primary and secondary schools and kindergartens is greatly improved. The role of family education and family style construction in grass-roots social governance is ever more prominent, the level of culture of family members and social civilization is further enhanced, and the new socialist family civilization of love for the country and family, love for one other, upward mobility and sharing is promoted.
Strengthen the study and propaganda of General Secretary Xi Jinping’s important discourse onfocusing on family education and family style construction
Strengthen theoretical armament and research and interpretation
General Secretary Xi Jinping’s important thesis on the construction of family and family ethics is an important part of the study and education of Party members and leading cadres at all levels. It shall be included in the study plan of the theoretical study center group of Party committees (Party groups) at all levels, incorporated into the teaching arrangements of Party schools (administrative colleges) and cadre colleges at all levels. General Secretary Xi’s theses shall be incorporated into the study and education of Party history, integrated into political theory education, education on Party rules and discipline, and education on the purposes of the Party, to guide Party members and leading cadres. This shall be done in order to further enhance their ideological and operational consciousness of family education and family style construction.
Promote the construction of a new type of think tank in the field of the family, the family family education family style construction selected topics into the philosophical and social science research projects. Launch a number of theoretical research which will bring doctrinal depth and academic rigor to this process. Support qualified universities and research institutes to set up relevant professional courses, train specialists and improve the theoretical system of family construction. Strengthen the transformation and application of theoretical results to better guide the practice of family education and family style construction.
Strengthen social propaganda and mass communication
Combined with the history of the Party, the history of the new China, the history of reform and opening up, the history of socialist development propaganda and education, the organization of the preparation of General Secretary Xi Jinping on the focus on the construction of the family, family education and family ethics important discussion study book, the launch of a series of interpretation articles, authoritative reports. Party newspapers and periodicals at all levels, radio and television stations, news websites and other regular set up columns on the construction of family education and family ethics, to create fresh content, innovative forms of integrated media products. Innovative micro-promotion, websites that often educational lectures online, mass education for women, lectures to promote honesty and fight corruption and other mass publicity and education activities.
In both urban and rural communities set up Family Concepts for the New Era bulletin boards, promote the spirit of General Secretary Xi Jinping’s important speeches in schools, in the community, int the family, at the patriotic education bases, at the New Era Civilization Study Centers. In May-June every year, multiple departments focus on the theme of family style and family education to tell good family stories, spread the concept of family education and create a strong atmosphere. Grasp the overall planning and production of family-themed literary and artistic works and publications, and through government purchases, launch more high-quality masterpieces that are unified in ideology, artistry and ornamentation. Produce and broadcast public service announcements, widely disseminated in various media at all levels, city screens, building TVs, buses and subways, parks and communities, so that the new era of family values shall be internalized in people’s hearts, externalized in their actions, and become the moral norms and codes of conduct that hundreds of millions of families use every day and do not realize.
Lead the construction of family education and family style with socialist core values
Enrich the connotation of family education and family style construction in the new era
Using true-to-life anecdotes, daily activities and representational art, carry out education on patriotism, collectivism and socialism, guide family members to firmly establish a new-age family concept, pass down to the next generation traditional Chinese virtues such as respect for the elderly, love for the young, equality between men and women, harmony between husband and wife, diligence and thrift, and neighborhood solidarity. Carry forward the great spirit forged by the Party in its long-term struggle, inherit the red family style, practice loyalty and love, family companionship, all one’s lifelong. The family shall promote the modern family concepts of loyalty and love, family companionship, lifelong learning, green ecology, cultivating and integrating love of family with love of country. Build family relationships of mutual love, promote the family virtues of upward mobility and goodness, embody the family pursuit of common building and sharing, and promote the core socialist values so that they take root in the family.
Deepen the construction of family culture
Refine the criteria and content of the creation of cultured families, improve our criteria for recognizing the best and promote the influence of the brand of creating cultured families. Depending response to the actual local situation and needs of different regions, groups of people and families, conduct regular search for “the most beautiful family” activities, carry out star-level cultured households, honest families, green families, five good families and other special innovations, promote the extension of activities from urban and rural communities to schools and institutions, enterprises and institutions, non-public economic organizations and social organizations, and expand the reservoir and reserve team of cultured families. Improve the typical family incentive help mechanism, set up online and offline honor rolls, promote good family style credit, supermarket point system and other incentive measures, to create a good environment in which virtuous people finish first. Makes these things the standard to emulate so that the value of the civilized family guidance will be a more obvious benchmark. Promote culture.
We will continue to carry out “Our Festival” activities, seize opportunities at Spring Festival, Lantern Festival, Qingming Dragon Boat Festival, HerdBoy/Weaver Girl qi-xi Festival, Mid-Autumn Festival, Double Ninth and other festivals. Organize family art activities, cultural lectures, family style story telling, new marriage culture propaganda, the new style of the times propaganda, etc., to attract urban and rural people to participate in passing down holiday customs, feel the spirit of China, enhance people’s pride in their own national culture. Vigorously carry out publicity activities to optimize fertility policy, promote the long-term balanced development of the population, strengthen education and guidance on the concept of marriage and family. Resolutely resist bad social habits such as bad marriage practices, excessively high dowry requirements grooms pay for their brides, neglecting one’s parent’s in life but giving them a fancy funeral, and guide the public to create a cultured countryside, with a family style. Encourage a simple and honest popular style, changing bad habits and creating good new ones, promote changes in prevailing habits and customes cultivating a civilized and healthy lifestyle.
Implement the fundamental task of moral education to carry out family education
Popularize the scientific concept of family education, provide personalized and diversified guidance services through thematic lectures, online classes, consultation and counseling, guide parents to strengthen the main responsibility, focus on character education and mental health education, strengthen the construction of family culture, educate appropriately according to the growth of the child, educate children with the right actions, the right ideas and the right methods to develop good ideas so they will develop good conduct and good habits. Foster the man of the new era who will take up the responsibility of national rejuvenation. Increase family education job slots and teams. Build and use schools, communities, online parenting schools and family education guidance service centers. Museums, memorials, children’s palaces, children’s activity centers also have a role to play.
Combine the strength of teachers, experts, “Five Olds“, good parents and other teams, and promote the construction of urban and rural family education guidance service system. Create a sound family-school-society collaborative parenting mechanism, smooth communication channels between home, school and society, encourage cooperation between schools and families. Terminate after-school services at the same time as the work day ends for local workers. Cooperate to solve the problems of children’s homework, sleep, cell phones, reading materials, physical management, as well as out-of-school training, mental health. Help parents to reduce their children’s education expenses and alleviate educational anxiety. Support those authorities, enterprises and institutions, social organizations and individuals that have adquate resources to provide public welfare services. Support institutions, enterprises and institutions, social organizations and individuals to provide public welfare family education guidance services, and gradually build a whole chain of education pattern with consistent goals, clear boundaries and shared resources.
Grasp the family style construction of party members and leading cadres
Take the construction of family style as an important part of the construction of the style of party members and leading cadres. Guide party members and leading cadres to raise their political awaremess. Deliberately make the construction of a good family style a top priority. Incorporate loyalty to the Party into the construction of family teaching and family style. Strictly abide by Party rules and regulations. Take the lead in governing the family with integrity, distinguish between the public and the private, separate the interests of their relatives from the duty of honesty they own to their position. Strictly teach the properly family lifestyle. Strictly control their family members and children. Frequently supervise, remind, warn, educate and urge them to comply with the law. Work with dedication and responsibility. The use of cases of abuses to strengthen the education through warning. Resolutely investigate and deal with the improper family style of party members and cadres and other issues. Create strong deterrents.
Deepen the use of cases of abuses as lessons for others. Promote reform, through the organization of warning education conference, by listening to the court trial of job-related crimes, organize visits to oppose corruption in government education exhibition, family education family style exhibition. Makes use of in-depth family education, guide party members and leading cadres to correctly deal with the relationship between self-discipline and other types of discipline, trust and supervision, authority and privilege, principles and feelings, build a firm anti-corruption and integrity of the family line of defense, with a pure family style to nurture a clean party style, government style and social style. Ensure that the family style is pure. Make good use of red resources such as patriotic education bases, cultivate red propaganda teams, excavate and organize and tell the stories of revolutionary predecessors’ family style, guide cadres and masses to draw the spiritual nutrients of virtue, integrity, diligence and thrift from the century-old history of the Party’s struggle, inherit revolutionary traditions and pass on red genes.
Focus on the important role of family education and family style construction in grass-roots social governance
Combine the construction of family education and family style with the creation of civilized cities and civilized villages and towns, and organize a variety of cultural and recreational activities such as health and public welfare, parent-child reading, neighborhood mutual assistance and cooking demonstrations in order to attract people to come out of their “small” homes and integrate into their “big” homes. Actively participate in the construction of harmonious communities, harmonious neighborhoods, beautiful villages and safe communities. Combine the construction of family education and family style with the practical activities of “I do practical things for the masses”. Focus on the needs of families such as “an old man and a small child” to implement practical projects for people’s livelihood, encourage kindergartens to carry out integrated services of child care, use existing positions to provide various forms of child care services, and help families solve the difficulties of caring for infants and toddlers under age 3.
Organize and carry out volunteer service activities, play the role of the new era civilization practice center (institute, station). Coordinate the residents (village) people’s committee, owners’ committee, property units and other forces to provide for widows and orphans, empty nesters, disabled elderly, bereaved parents who lost their only child. Provide additional services such as life care, spiritual and cultural comfort, health testing, fraud prevention, the use of intelligent technology. Increase the protection of special groups of children in difficulty. Carry out winter and summer care activities for children left behind in rural areas; carry out marriage and family counseling, conflict and dispute mediation, psychological counseling, after-school student care services, etc., to form a good culture of upward mobility and mutual help.
Strengthen solid guarantees for the construction of family education and family style
Strengthen institutional protection
Accelerate the process of promoting family education legislation, and constantly improve the legal system for safeguarding the legitimate rights and interests of family members and promoting the function of the family. Vigorously promote the Civil Code, the Law against Domestic Violence, the Law on the Protection of Minors and other laws and regulations to guide family members to enhance their awareness of the rule of law and adhere to the moral bottom line. The value orientation of public policies will be manifested, and the requirements of the new-age family concept will be reflected in various economic development and social management policies and in various institutional norms and codes of conduct, so as to effectively play the role of laws and regulations, public policies and social norms in guiding and restraining family members.
Strengthen organizational leadership
All relevant departments at all levels should fully understand the importance of family education and family style construction, and effectively take political responsibility and leadership.
The propaganda departments of party committees and civilization offices at all levels shall focus on strengthening the family, family education, good family lifestyle construction into the overall layout of spiritual civilization construction. They shall strengthen the coordination, organization and implementation, selection and recognition, publicity and guidance and supervision of implementation.
Discipline inspection and supervision organs, organizational departments shall take effective measures to strengthen party members and leading cadres family style.
The education department takes the lead to improve the family-school-society collaborative education mechanism and implement the fundamental task of building moral character.
Women’s Federation organizations to implement the “family happiness and well-being project” as a means to play a unique role of women in promoting the Chinese family virtues, establish a good family style.
All relevant departments should make building family and family ethics a top priority, and incorporate it into the overall planning of economic and social development, in improving policies and initiatives, improve the working mechanism, focus on assessment and evaluation, and increase the protection efforts to promote the institutionalization of family and family ethics, standardization and normalization of the work.
In many organizations, becoming a staff assistant to the leaders in your organization is a fast track to promotion. The staff assistant learns how the organization works, gets to know the personalities, learns by observation leadership skills, and gets the chance to shine in front of people who play a large role in promotions. One colleague who did a year as a staff assistant at the U.S. State Department early on in his career told me “For the first six months it was a wonderful learning experience. For the second six months, it felt like being somebody’s slave.” I imagine some of the stories in this book will resonate with the experience of staff assistants in many countries. Some other stories will have their own special Chinese characteristics.
This 1994 book The Art of the Staff Assistant: the Art of Serving the Boss [参谋助手论——为首长服务的艺术] impresses me with its rare inside view of the work of a key player in the Chinese leadership system — the secretary mishu. A self-effacing worker bee, yet the top leaders of the Chinese Communist Party are also called secretaries and at the top the General Secretary zongmishuunder a system inherited from the Communist Party of the Soviet Union where supreme power was nominally vested in the Party Congress but in fact it has lain with the General Secretary from the time of Josef Stalin.
While Chinese leadership is a much discussed topic, I haven’t read much about the process of becoming a Chinese leader. Perhaps this is just my own ignorance. However when I hear people confidently spinning views on this or that Chinese leader and what is going behind the scenes, I wonder. How much, how little do we really know. Hu Shih, a throughgoing agnostic, liked the saying “Have doubts where others are confident; be confident where others have doubts.” 对人事可疑处不疑，对原则不疑处存疑 Nice if you can pull it off!
Interlude: Chinese Leadership Studies
Literature is one way to approach to the study of leadership and officialdom. There are many Chinese novels and television shows about leaders and their staff and their various deeds and misdeeds although some of these are sometimes said to be overly dramatized, exaggerated and polticized. The literary genre of officialdom novels guanchang xiaoshuo 官场小说 is rich. Somewhat less fictional are memoirs of officials from former premier and later unperson Zhao Ziyang’s memoir Prisoner of the State (where in several places Zhao rails against Deng Xiaoping’s deplorable violations of the Charter of the Chinese Communist Party). There are also and historical works based partly on those memoirs like Yang Jisheng’s 楊繼繩 massive book (a mere 2000 pages in two volumes — I read the first 300 pages last fall) Tiāndì fānfù——zhōngguó wénhuà dàgémìng shǐ 天地翻覆——中國文化大革命史 [The World Turned Upside Down — the History of China’s Cultural Revolution] Yang Jisheng does an extraordinary job weaving together memoirs, personal experience and other publicly available materials. Yang didn’t have access to government archive for the Cultural Revolution book. He did on his famine book. The Chinese Communist Party hated the result — his similarly comprehensive book on China’s bad-policy induced famine of 1959 – 61 that killed tens of millions of Chiinese people.
Literature as well as insider books like The Art of the Staff Assistant can help us see the human side of Chinese people and officialdom in these more difficult days of China’s relationship to some foreign countries when views on both sides, things are hardening even more than before into a rigid us/them dualism. No, what Chinese says to foreigners isn’t always so much about the foreigner as about China’s own internal struggles. And versa vica. Mistakes are myriad in all areas of human endeavor. So what we imagine as hostility could be just confusion and mistakes. Reading things like this could encourage us all to have slower-burning fuses and think about the old Chinese saying “When a trend reaches and extreme, it must then reverse its course”. wujibifan 物极必反 A pendulum-swinging tautology yes, but reminds us of the importance of keeping the present, be it ever so exciting, in context and resisting the temptation of simply extrapolating from current trends.
On YouTube 人民的名义 EP01 (1080P) in the Name of People – English Subtitles corruption fighter drama. One of my Chinese literature teachers commented that this series is highly stylized: the tall guys are the good guys and the short guys are the bad guys. Like white hats and black hats in the old Wild West movies.
Prosopography is a technique historians and social scientists use to understand the characteristics of a group by looking at a great number of biographies. This technique is often useful where there is not a great deal known about many key individuals.
Looking at Chinese official biographies one can get a sense of where leaders came from, who they have worked with, and the variety of their experiences. Reading though many of them one can see patterns of associations and career paths. Chinese leaders often have a varied range of experiences throughout the country. Former Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao was a mining engineer famous for his encyclopedic knowledge of the mineral riches of Ningxia. Much later, Wen Jiabao was the secretary to Chinese premier Zhao Ziayang. The post-revolutioanry generation of top Politburo leaders were mostly engineers by training reflecting the practical orientation of higher education in New China during the 1950s. This is now changing as leaders with more diverse educational backgrounds rise in the system.
The mayor of Chengdu when I served at the US Consulate General had previously been the director of a large steel plant near Shanghai. The websites of local governments and the People’s Daily website has many capsule biographies of local leaders. Here is a machine-translated capsule bio of Beijing Muncipality Party Secretary Cai Qi
Intriguingly, there is a message button on the leader’s name. The Chengdu mayor told me once that he had a mayor’s mailbox. I sent him a message on it to test it — it came back “mailbox full”. To be fair, I did get angry one time at the city for leaving a big hole in a sidewalk around the corner from the U.S. Consulate after doing some construction work. A friend of mine fell into it but fortunately was not seriously injured. I wrote an angry message to the mailbox of Chengdu city department. After two weeks they did take care of it — in fact on the street I ran into an official on the way to see me to answer the message. Parenthetically, a Chinese friend told me his local street committee (the lowest level of local administration — the equivalent in the city of the ‘administrative village’ that might encompass several villages) has become much more effective in helping people get business done since the Communist Party and government began promoting government online around 2010 or so.
China Vitae, supported by the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, is a good source of short biographies of Chinese leaders.
During my ten years working as a U.S. diplomat in China I met Chinese officials who had staff assistants called secretaries mishu in the Chinese system although office managers are also called secretaries. In English too, secretaries, office managers, executive secretaries and staff assistants (in the military staff officers) are on a continuum I imagine. The secretary would arrange a time and sit in on the meeting taking notes while I sat in the official’s office. Sometimes I would take an official out to lunch where we could speak more freely than in the office.
Back to the Book
This 1994 book The Art of the Staff Assistant: the Art of Serving the Boss [参谋助手论——为首长服务的艺术] has gone through many editions and is widely available on many Chinese websites and in bookstore. Here I have relied on the DeepL machine translation program to do a rough translation. I smoothed out some machine miscues in the first few pages. The rest will be more difficult going, but read it for the gist. The authors’ experience was working as a staff officer in the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) although they are writing a more general book about the art of the staff assistant reflecting the experience, hope, humiliations, glories and disappointments of people working as staff assistants in Chinese government and Party organizations. [
Machine translation using DeepL. I smoothed the first few pages. After that it gets a bit rough but can still repay you with its insights and inside view.
Book Excerpt Begins:
The Art of the Staff Assistant: the Art of Serving the Boss
The Bitter, Hot, Sour and Sweet of Following the Boss
As mentioned in the introduction of this book, for the sake of convenience, we refer to the staff officers, officers and assistants who serve the chief as secretaries.
The secretary, as the dictionary explains, is a person who is in charge of paperwork and assists the head of an organ or department in his or her daily work. From here, we can see that the secretary is the leader’s assistant and staff, the main task is in charge of the paperwork, to assist the head of the day-to-day work, and to undertake other tasks assigned.
For the secretary, there are more than a hundred images in the eyes of a thousand people, and more than a thousand comments in the mouth of a thousand people: either honor or shame, or disaster or blessing. In addition, the usual image of the secretary in the mass media and literature is someone who is a flatterer and false. No wonder people so often criticize but rarely praise them.
As a secretary, whether it is a long term of two or three decades, or a short term of two years or three years, are inevitably a few bumps and bruises, a few storms, and even a few degrees of shock and awe. There are bitter and sweet, there are worries and joys, there are comfort and sorrow. Secretary of the staff of the bitter, spicy, sweet and sour, the general outsiders are rare to know. From what I describe there, I think you can come to understand something about their work.
I. The Work of the Secretary
About the characteristics of the work of the secretary, there has long been a sophisticated and authoritative theoretical exposition. Starting from my work experience in the PLA, at the division and corps level and from examining the perspective of close the personal experience of Party and government cadres, I would say that the basic characteristics of secretarial work are as follows.
(A) Secretarial work is hard work
The secretary’s career is a profession that breaks the bones and exhausts the heart. Hard work and endurance is the basic spirit of the secretary should have.
First of all, it is a busy job. A wife said this about her husband who is a secretary: always busy all day long, so busy that there is no dinner time, no time to sleep, no concept of holidays. This is not an exaggeration. According to the statistics of a command office, the secretary in charge of writing work, the annual work 3781.4 hours, calculated on 365 days, the average daily work in more than 10.36 hours, equivalent to 472 days, more than the normal workload of 166 days. The statistical results of an agency in the troop site show that other staff members work an average of 206 days a year, a difference of 266 days.
The second is exhaustion. Secretary’s feet are non-stop running, the heart is always alert. During the day there are endless affairs, and at night there is an endless climbing grid. The work is complicated and specific, and one thing is more demanding than another. Sometimes when you are eating, suddenly something comes up, you have to put down the bowl and run, and when you come back, the food is cold and the time for work has come, so you have to walk into the office half-starved. Writing materials have a long and short, a tighter than a rush, a head than a head to be urgent. When you go to work to write, after work to drive the night to write. Hot days you sweat as you write, cold days you stomp your feet with a runny nose as you write, and even when you are asleep you have this urge to jump up and write. Some people say: the text debt in the body, the food is not tasty, sleep restless.
If you do not believe this, here are are examples in evidence: A
A secretary for 5 years, how many nights for writing articles have not yet been statistics. Once to the head of the rush to write a speech, from the morning to write late at night, hungry, hit the road back to the house, pull out the key but how can not open the lock, sweating, the door suddenly opened, rushed out two people, each holding a stick. It turns out that he was thinking about the manuscript on the way, on the wrong floor, the homeowner saw someone in the middle of the night to get the door lock, thought it was a burglar, want to hit ……
Once again, it is bitter. Although the secretary is not sweat, labor its muscles and bones, nor is it a coarse food and thin clothing, the cost of food and clothing, but the secretary’s hard work is really something else. It is not an exaggeration to say that the secretary sometimes have to spend more effort than the leader, sweat more, eat more suffering. A secretary once went with the the head of a PLA military region to a meeting, when returning to the peak of New Year’s travel rush, the train stunk and cold and crowded. Secretary D squeezed and squeezed, dry mouth, exhausted, finally the head of the arrangement to sit, but he had to stand to get off. When he returned home, his face was not washed, the head of the instructions, quickly put together the meeting materials, tomorrow morning to open the Standing Committee to use. He had to make a cup of hot, strong tea, a cold towel, to lift up his spirits so he could fight on doing the work of the evening. He has a warm nest but can may not rest there; there is a delicious meal but may not eat it. This is not the same as being out in the hunger and the cold, but come down to that in the end.
Secretary work is really “endless, not hungry but never eating you full, day and night have no meaning to you”. It goes on day after day, year after year. You rarely have the opportunity to breathe. A day down, exhausted, a little leisure, you feel sleepy immediately. A Ministry B officer well known as the “pencil” for his writing skills, has broken seven rice bowls during his naps and so got the additional nickname of “rice-bowl smasher”. Such situations are numerous.
(B) the secretary’s work is lonely
Secretarial work is a kind of occupation without flowers and applause. It is often accompanied by indescribable loneliness.
First of all, making clothes for others is always the most distinctive feature of the secretary’s work. Busy offstage, no nameless on stage. In the work of the troops on the stage, the head of the rightful role of the famous and tangible protagonists, and the secretary can not shirk the responsibility is to make the boss look good and to play his part by working desperately hard behind the scenes. People’s eyes tend to focus only on the leadership at all levels, large and small, to hear the impassioned leadership report, see the leadership to make a variety of decisive decisions, to see the the leadership to direct the activities with style. They rarely notice the secretary working beside the leaders, do not think much of the leader’s report, decision-making and style, as the crystallization of untold hours of hard work by the secretary. This just as how delicate flowers are much more likely to make people ignore the green leaves below.
A director, in the military division regiment three-level organs to write more than twenty years of material, to the “official” key moment, but can not find an article signed their names. A head of the speech caused a large reaction, until the people into the restaurant are still talking about: the head of the speech! It was wonderful! As there were more people accompanying the meal, there was no room for the secretary. A staff member said with resentment: “What are these stupid staff officers doing.” It was really irritating and sad. The labor of a secretary and its value are not easily understood and recognized. As long as you as a secretary, we must always be prepared: no one to get ahead of the day, there are silent and unheard of reality.
Secondly, there is “suffering” difficult to say is always the heavy weight of the secretary’s psychological burden. As a secretary, in front of the boss and the crowd, often wears a smile on his face and radiates calm. And it is precisely at this time, they may be suffering fallout from some devious scheme, be wrongly blamed, and even be made to suffer in the place of others. This pain must be openly suffered. This makes it more painful that it would be otherwise. First of all, writing articles, is the the most important psychological burden the secretary cannot escape from. Much indescribable suffering arises from that. Some leaders are too simple, they do not provide a detailed explanation, do not give detailed guidance for the secretary’s work, leaving everything to the secretary. Other leaders are too casual, they’ll change everything in a flash and the secretary’s efforts have all gone to waste. Others are too harsh, the show no mercy when they review a manuscript, keeping the secretary on pins and needles; some leaders hold views that are self-contradictory so that the secretary is in at a loss at what to do; some leaders are too stubborn, the views are not quite right, but the secretary has to be hard-headed and write just as he is told. And so on. The secretary in writing articles, inevitably encounter the above-mentioned situations, but in any case, when the article is not written to meet the requirements, the secretary should not and can not have a plea, no need for a detailed table of hardship. Zhang × × is a well-known “pencil” of a government office, but he is increasingly afraid to write important materials. Once the head of the B called him to say: “Zhang officer, the party committee wants you to write the report on its study and rectification session. They want something special this time.”
“Boss, what will be the main points? What is the most important experience the committee learned from? Give me a hint.”
“You write a draft, and then the party committee will discuss it.”
“Now hurry up and do it!”
Officer Zhang collected materials. From concept to first draft took a whole week. He did two all-nighters. Finally, when the party committee discussed the draft, the senior official B said that it lacks a high-level perspective and sent it back to do over. After writing it out again, the senior official A said it was not realistic enough and so it had to be rewritten once again. It went through seven drafts, until the next day to report it was accepted. When Zhang compared the first draft with the seventh draft it was the same – from the point of view to the examples used. No only were a weeks worth of brain cells completely gone to waste, he also got the “reputation” of being a secretary who has “a hard time understanding the intentions of his boss”.
Once again, bear the humiliation, which is another secretary can not get rid of the psychological burden, sometimes unbearable. Some leaders are unhappy and have no where to vent their feelings. And so they blame their secretary. The secretary becomes a punching bag. Some leaders are dissatisfied with other leaders but are unable to say it so they will criticize the secretary who becomes a scapegoat. When some leaders wrongly entrusted with the work and the relevant superiors examine who is responsible, shift the blame to the secretary and so the secretary has become a scapegoat. A troop had several vehicle accidents one after another, it is ordered that they all take a day in the field to work on their driving. No one is allowed out of the car. This day boss D had a relative visiting, they instructed the secretary to send a car to pick up the relative at the station, and said: “It’s okay, I’m responsible for the accident.” The secretary had to do as he was told. The car had not yet left the courtyard, when he was stopped by administrative head C: “orders today are they we are not allowed to go out in a car. Are you deliberately defying orders?” The secretary knew that the boss C was critical of boss D. When talking with boss C, he hurriedly said, “I made up my own mind, you criticize it!” Some people say that a secretary keeps all is feelings to himself. There is some truth to that. No matter what the complaint, blame or suffer on behalf of others, can only swallow down. It can be said that, for the sake of the overall situation and the commission, can tolerate the good, is the secretary of the unique spirit of loyalty to duty. This generosity of mind is undoubtedly a valuable asset. Tolerate humiliation is probably the secretary’s “life” it!
Caution, caution always on behalf of the leader a code of conduct that secretaries must abide by. The secretariat of an organization, which serves many leaders, while providing good service to the leadership must also to try to maintain the prestige of the leadership and the unity of the leadership collective. Both to often pretend to be deaf and dumb, but also to have hearts beating as one with the leadership. If you have something to say, you can’t always be blunt; nor can you lay it all out at once. As a secretary, the work is governed by people, must be done as the boss intends. One’s time is governed by others; arrangement must be done as the boss requires. It can be said that the secretary studies the expressions on the face of the boss and the boss’s temperament to decide what to do.
G had been a soldier for 30 years, has been a division major, so far, every matter entrusted by the superiors, have done piece by piece to check the implementation; to carry out each work, have shown a desperate spirit; to each visitor is given a warm reception. Also unconsciously reveal a certain sense of inferiority. Why is this so? In his own words, it was because he was used to being a secretary, and the shadow of being a secretary remained everywhere. He once remembered that once with the head of the outing, the first night to rush to write a speech to 3:00 a.m., the head of the dawn to leave, and did not bother to eat, after a few hours, get off to rest, as required by the head of the meal to doze off again. The chief has a characteristic, eat fast, sleep fast, wake up fast, the chief fell asleep, G a person has not finished eating. The chief got up, G just fell asleep. The chief left, G has not yet woken up. The chief is far away, G found that he was abandoned. G had to take the train instead, and it took two days and two nights to catch up with the chief, who was severely criticized. From then on he was cautious up, dreaming when also calculating the work arrangements.
Treat people very cautiously, observe discipline very strictly, consider the problem very carefully, carry out the work very seriously, this is the natural characteristics of the secretary profession, but also the inevitable requirements of the secretary profession.
(C) The secretary Puts on Airs
The role of the secretary is mysterious and unique. In the midst of labor and loneliness and not infrequently can put on airs.
The secretary can often not only represent the head, and even under certain conditions can replace the head. In some occasions, in a particular condition, others respect and fear you. Secretary is the head of the close staff, where the head to go, the secretary to follow to where, the head of what to eat, the secretary can eat what, the head of what to enjoy, the secretary can also enjoy what. Like riding in a car, others in a big car, the secretary can ride with the chief in a small car. The chief to attend a banquet, the secretary of the entourage naturally to participate, not only because of the responsibility to take care of the chief, but also the reception units do not dare to offend the secretary. Because the need for the head to approve things, there are many things that must first go through the secretary. If you offend the secretary, of course, future work will be difficult. For example, a unit to the head of a very nice souvenir, but did not give the secretary a copy, the secretary is not very happy. This is also understandable. The undignified secretary not only has ideas, but also practices. When the unit wants to let the head through the secretary to do something, the secretary thought to himself, when sending something did not expect me, the head of the door when you give the door, I have not gone in, you let go; now something, want me to be a bridge when the boat, to give you a message to think of me, not so cheap. Of course, the mouth does not say, promise when also quite quick: “No problem, can talk about it.” But in the heart said: “You wait.” The result is like a clay ox plunging into the sea — dissolving, never to be heard from again.
Some people say that the secretary is the “second head”. This is not unreasonable. Some times, the head does not directly appear, let the secretary to deal with, then the secretary on behalf of the head. His speech, his opinion, his attitude, is the head of the speech, the head of the opinion, the head of the attitude. Some times the head is not in, entrusted to the secretary is responsible for solving some problems, then the secretary instead of the head, according to the head of the principle of entrusted to the specific undertaking some things. Therefore, in the eyes of the general public secretary is very powerful, the secretary himself will also feel this kind of power. However, here we remind the secretary, must pay attention to modesty and prudence.
(D) The secretary is fortunate
The secretary is indeed quite lucky. “Those on the water tower see moonrise first”, because of working beside the head, the head of the secretary know very well. To the secretary’s level, ability and work achievements, in the eyes, in mind. It is often said that “know people good appointment”, the reason why “good appointment”, the premise is “know people”, the secretary was the head as “know people “can be called on the unique advantage. Because the head understand the secretary, and trust the secretary, it is easier to appoint the secretary, promote the secretary. For the secretary, working under the watchful eye of the head, more opportunities to exercise, work ability to improve quickly, the opportunity to be reused a lot, the possibility of promotion is great. When the need for some people entrusted with important tasks, the head of the first thought may be the secretary. According to a unit of cadres department statistics, in a high-level cadres of the same level, the secretary or as a secretary of the average of about 5 years younger, and 2.5 times more than other professional origins. Under normal circumstances, secretaries almost everyone can go up one level. In today’s important leadership positions in China, people who have been secretaries of all kinds make up a significant proportion. This is the actual situation.
Second, the requirements of the work of the secretary
The basic requirements for secretarial work have been clearly stated in numerous published treatises. The secretarial staff of the army includes both staff officers, officers and assistants, as well as the heads of operational departments. According to this specific object, we believe that the secretary to handle the matters entrusted by the head, there are three requirements as follows.
The first is to remember everything accurately. Secretary to the head of each matter, there can not be the slightest error. In particular, the time, place, personnel, requirements, causes and consequences, specific figures, percentages, and even the head of the attitude, tone of voice, must be clear. Should do: pocket notepad, the table has a notepad, there are notepad helpers around (family members, children at any time to remind), so as not to forget and miss things, while doing ding is ding, dao is dao, there must not be the slightest error. If there is a slight omission, there will be a problem. One Saturday, the army commander said to Secretary D: “Tomorrow I am on duty, 10:00 am. The higher-ups came to inspect the work of the direct team, when you give me a call, I accompanied the comrades of the working group to go together.” Secretary D wrote it down on the notepad as he was accustomed to do, and gave some instructions to his family. The company’s first-ever “The Best of the Best” is the first of its kind. It took this secretary a moment of clarity. If not for the help at home, D How should the secretary answer to the military commander?
For the chief’s outings, it is even more important to make careful arrangements not to make the slightest mistake. Please see a head of the troops to visit the half-day
activities arrangements (see attached).
Secondly, everything has to be done. The chief of every thing, whether it is a major national event, or family matters, and whether it is easy to do things or difficult things, there must be results. You can’t talk about the price, can’t complain, can’t pose difficulties, not to mention the excuse not to do. The chief in handing over the task to the difficult aspects have been taken into account, there is generally some leeway. Of course there are difficulties, or you can not see the secretary’s skills.
Third, the second time to hear back. The chief of the matter, regardless of the outcome, should be reported in a timely manner, and the sooner the better. For example, buy a ticket, is a matter of urgency. The secretary bought a good in the pocket not to report to the head, so that the head of the anxious: buy no? Which train? What time does it leave? The chief may be anxious to go around, you are quite frank. Can you not be criticized? Such things have been three times, the secretary can not do.
These three requirements are not esoteric and do not have any theoretical depth, but is very important, is the minimum conditions for good secretarial work.
Third, the secretary should have these qualities
Secretary to follow the head of the bitter, spicy, sweet and sour, not everyone can adapt, endure. As a qualified secretary, to have some special qualities, in the mind, moral, psychological, clerical ability, writing level and other aspects have very high requirements.
(A) politically strong
Secretary work position is important and has great responsibility. Secretaries are often involved in the core of the Party
The secretary is often involved in the Party’s core secrets, involved in some major issues of decision-making and processing. This requires.
First of all, have a firm political position, always adhere to the belief of communism, in ideology, politics, action and the party to maintain a high degree of consistency. In particular, it must be able to withstand the storm and not make mistakes on major issues of principle. The kind of people who kill back at the first sign of trouble can not be the secretary.
Secondly, there should be a deep theoretical foundation of Marxism-Leninism, Mao Zedong Thought and a high level of policy. Will use the Marxist-Leninist position, views and methods of observation, understanding and solving practical problems, understanding and mastering the party’s line, guidelines, policies, and good at implementing in the practical work.
Again, have a strong sense of enterprise and responsibility. Always put the interests of the Party and the people in the first place; from the high and strict requirements of their own, love their jobs, dedicated to their duties, not afraid of hardship and fatigue, regardless of gains and losses, not for fame and fortune.
(B) business to fine
Secretary directly for the head of the service, not only the important matters, and complicated affairs, high standards and strict requirements. Up to assist the leadership in decision-making, down to food, clothing, housing and transport are to manage. Secretary staff must be both civilian and military, a combination of coarse and fine, doing a good job of big things, small things to do smart.
First of all, to have the ability to work shrewdly and competently. Quick-witted, sharp, efficient handling of documents and telegrams; timely arrangement of relevant activities; initiative to collect, analyze and synthesize the situation; good at representing the leadership, convey the views, arrange work, handle matters. Properly send and receive, call, receive visits and other matters in an orderly manner, even to the leadership’s life issues should also be meticulous and thoughtful arrangements.
Second, to have excellent writing skills. Familiar with the basic knowledge of the application of the authorities, comfortable with the use of various types of documents, clear thinking, reasonable structure, simple and concise style, fluent and vivid language, accurate and appropriate expression.
Again, have a wealth of scientific and cultural knowledge and certain skills. Understand the latest research results in social sciences, natural sciences, know the general state of politics, economics, astronomy, geography, history and culture and art, etc., familiar with the unit’s expertise and business work of various departments, as soon as possible to master the use of microcomputers, fax and other modern office equipment, if necessary, should also learn photography, video, driving and even self-defense skills.
(C) the style should be hard
The style of secretarial staff, related to the quality of service for the head of the issue, but also the overall image of the unit is part of. Secretary staff style is multifaceted, summarized in the following points.
First, diligent efforts, thunder and lightning. Not lazy willingness to make efforts, do not wait and do not rely on, said to do, pay attention to time and efficiency.
Second, in-depth practical, contact the masses. Effective investigation and research, grasp the real situation, do not pose, do not take the form, treat people with generosity, solidarity with comrades.
Three is thoughtful and meticulous, rigorous and steady. The paperwork is perfect, meticulous, modest and cautious in dealing with people and arrangements are well thought out. Not impatient, not paranoid, not self-assertive, calm and collected, coping with a clear sense of urgency, lift the weight as lightly as possible, not panic, not fumbling.
(D) cultivation to be good
The ideological and moral cultivation of secretarial staff is extremely important, it is one of the basic qualities of qualified secretaries. A person’s cultivation is the performance of its psychological quality. Therefore, the secretary must have the following good psychological qualities.
First, indifference and not lose the clear will. No desire for power, being in the power staggering, in the calm, not moved by it, no desire for power will use the power not offside. No profit desire, in the vital sector, the self-poor, not for the temptation, no profit desire will be beneficial not to seek private. No name desire, in the off-stage behind the scenes, in a place of honor and prominence, willing to be a cow, not to be confused, no name desire will become famous not to enjoy the reputation. Although indifferent but should have the will to show an independent personality, with real talent, to show their own ideas, to support the leadership decision. Aloof will directly expressed as not afraid of hardship, not to enjoy; heavy career, light gain and loss, more dedication, less demanding.
Second, calm and not lose decisiveness. Deep and good thinking, patient and steady, never act rashly, emotional, with strong self-control. Firm and decisive, dare to do, never indecisive, fearful, have greater courage and boldness.
Third, self-confidence without losing modesty. Self-respect and self-love, self-confidence, indomitable spirit, review the situation, honor and disgrace. Forbidden to grovel, obsequious, is the strong man of life. He is kind, full of enthusiasm, speaks kindly and is willing to help others. Never arrogant, overbearing, is a friend of all people.
Fourth, dignified and humorless. Demeanor dignified, generous, civilized and elegant, calm demeanor. No dirty words, no complacency and forgetfulness. The expression is rich and subtle, the words imply philosophy, can trigger people’s thoughts and fun, can eliminate tension and dull emotions.
Secretary good ideological and moral cultivation and stable psychological quality is multi-level, multi-faceted. In actual life people from personal experience, there are many very accurate and vivid expressions of this. From the style point of view, the secretary should have the style of willingness to be a ladder, the style of taking the credit, the style of tolerance and generosity, the style of democracy and equality, the style of treating people with sincerity and the style of being a pioneer. From the perspective of character, the secretary should be decisive, self-improvement, composure and generosity. From the point of view of manners, the secretary should be smart, quick, modest, dignified, enthusiastic, confident, simple and humorous temperament. From the point of view of character, the secretary should do: the power does not trespass on power, control of people not whole, no selfishness since the peace of mind; can bear the humiliation, the commission, the overall situation; to comrades warm, caring, sincere, to see the problem accurately, clear, dare to take responsibility; do not believe in gossip, not to set right and wrong, not to “bully others”.
Engels said: “The character of a person is not only in what he does, but also in how he does it.” The ideal quality of secretarial staff is the clever combination of reason and emotion, introversion and extroversion, independence and obedience and other psychological factors. As a secretary, to potter and hone themselves in long-term practice, so that they become qualified secretarial talent.
In the leader’s mind how the secretary is considered qualified, many experts and scholars at home and abroad have proposed many assessment topics and methods, now a little collated for reference. (In the text, “you” refers to the leader)
1 Secretary know the scope of your duties and all activities? Do you understand your goals and intentions?
2. If you leave the organization for 3-4 weeks, are you convinced that your secretary can still handle your business and personal affairs in a serious and responsible manner?
3. Does he help you to arrange the schedule of activities, coordinate appointments, so that you can go to the appointment as scheduled, all without your urging and bothering? Is he a person
who is very good at organizing his own time?
4. if you do not remind him, he can take the initiative to perform and firmly complete the work you give him?
5. Is he polite to your colleagues and visitors? Can he be respectful, helpful and take others’ matters to heart?
6. Is he an imaginative and creative person? Can he come up with new ideas and suggestions for you to consider? Does he often adopt new ways to improve your work and his own work? Is he able to develop new work systems or work procedures? Is he organized in his work?
7. Is he a resourceful person? Can he take the initiative to solve some problems without bothering you? Is he afraid of difficulties?
8. can he improve the efficiency of the paperwork? Can he find in time the documents on your desk that have been sitting there for a long time while other leaders are waiting to read them? Can he pick up the documents you need from other leaders in a timely manner?
9. Does he possess basic secretarial skills (such as filing, shorthand and telephone manner) that are beyond reproach?
10. Is he calm in critical situations? Is he calm in an emergency? When you are under pressure and sulk or lose your temper, he can still calmly continue to work as usual?
11. Is he loyal to you and worthy of your trust? Can you entrust him with some confidential information, both public and private?
12. Does he have a wide reading and knowledge base? Can he often draw your attention to publications that are relevant to the unit and to your personal affairs?
13. does he become a valuable source of information for the unit? Is he a valuable source of information that is difficult, inconvenient, or impossible for you to obtain on your own?
14. Does he have a personal education program? Does he ask to learn more about your unit, your work, your colleagues, or your industry?
15. Does he speak clearly? Can he briefly brief you in writing or verbally? Can he communicate your instructions clearly and correctly? Can he understand your ideas about a policy or action and tell others about it as accurately as you do?
16. Does he get his daily work done regardless of time? Does he volunteer to work overtime at night or on weekends as needed?
17．Can he delegate his unfinished work to others when necessary and supervise others to complete it responsibly, just like a manager?
18. can he take care of the daily routine for you without your intervention?
19．Can he remember some important dates (such as anniversaries, someone’s birthday, traditional holidays, vacations, etc.) and arrange celebrations for your superiors, family or colleagues on your behalf?
20．Is he competent in research work? For example, can he collect information, investigate what happened in a certain matter and write an investigation report with facts, analysis and recommendations, etc.?
May all our secretaries, through their efforts, be able to meet these 20 standards.
The art of familiarizing yourself with the personality of the chief
The secretary-general period and the chief together, get along and work together, need to establish a good relationship of trust and dependence. And the establishment of a harmonious relationship depends mainly on the secretary’s understanding of the head’s personality characteristics and compliance. On the basis of a full understanding of the personality characteristics of the head, the secretary to adjust themselves to the needs of the head. Secretary to the head of the lack of understanding of personality traits can not comply, can not comply with the difficulty of establishing a good relationship. Do a head like the secretary, likewise, also like a head of the secretary, you must do to understand and comply with the head of the personality characteristics.
A, understand the head of the habits of life
The secretary working beside the chief, should be the chief very satisfied with the person. Generally speaking, the size should be moderate, look dignified and clean, the body should be healthy and strong. When which the head of the secretary, should be for which the head of the dedicated service. This requires the secretary to have a clear understanding of the habits of the head of life.
(A) on the head of the “eating” habits
People are food for the day. The chief is also a member of the people, but also to eat. Eating is the most important part of the chief’s habits.
On the leading cadres “eat”, that is, what to eat, how to eat, where to eat, is a current hot issue, is the most discussed by the masses, but also one of the most disgusting issues. Once you hear that the head to eat, it is creepy, in the clean government, with public money to eat and drink is one of the most serious problems. A large sum of the hard-earned money of the workers is eaten up, which is distressing.
In the head of the problem of eating, but also can not be generalized, there should be a comprehensive and specific analysis of understanding. There are three situations: First, some chiefs do love to eat and drink, love to eat good love to eat strange. Second, some of the chiefs do hate eating and drinking, especially resent the endless eating and drinking. Third, some chiefs do not seek to eat and drink, only “Coca-Cola”, that is, to eat smoothly and casually as the standard. According to our analysis of 100 division leaders and above, only 7 people love to eat and drink. The 56 people who hate eating and drinking. “Coca-Cola” of 37 people.
The first kind of head only accounted for a minority, but the impact is greater. Although the secretary can not stop, but to be aware of.
The second kind of chief accounts for the majority, is the hope and strength of the party style improvement. Some of them come from a poor background, home in the countryside, grew up eating hardships, quite averse to big food and drink. There are those who come up from the lower level of the head, know the grassroots of the bitterness, to spend a day of eating and drinking is very uncomfortable. There are also some from the hardship of remote areas out of the head, the squandering of public funds to eat public drinking public also deeply distressed.
The third kind of head accounted for a considerable number, is the secretary should seriously understand the important object to master. There is a chief in the issue of eating especially “picky”, he likes to eat boiled dumplings. See the broken skin of the dumplings will say: “Today’s food is good!” Next to a sumptuous banquet table seems to have little appeal to him. The secretary had to make it clear to the cooks that the dumplings should be made more often, and that there should be some openings. Another head likes to eat thin rice, four plates of pickles, a glass of wine, he is quasi-happy to see: “The food is good, really good.” And the stomach can also eat quite large. Another chief is from Shanxi, nothing else matters, but every meal must have two potatoes, see the skin open flesh of the potatoes, eyes shine, while eating and say: “nutritious ah, where does the starch come from? Mainly from here.” And so on, they are the standard of “Coca-Cola”.
Each head in the issue of eating, habits are very different, the secretary can not be treated equally. Whether at home or abroad, are on the head of the sea and delicacies are not necessarily happy.
(B) on the head of the “drink” habits
Drink, more complicated than in the past. Tea, drinks, wine, fancy, to charm the eye. Wine imports, “Remy Martin”, “XO” a cup with a little, 70 to 80 yuan is considered cheap. Domestic is also very expensive, “Maotai”, “Wuliangye”, “Jiannanchun” one or two hundred yuan a bottle, may also be fake. Plus beer, blue belt, drink a few tubes of half a month’s salary. The variety of drinks is even more, the juice, the pulp, countless. A mouthful of sour water, three or five yuan or even one or two dozen yuan, after drinking the stomach ache. It can really be said that the grade is getting higher and higher, appetite is getting worse and worse.
For the head of the drink, the secretary should also be analyzed to master. Or according to our examination of more than 100 division chiefs as an example, there are roughly four kinds of cases: one is like a big drink, drink high-grade 7 people. 25 people who have to drink a little every day. 40 people who can drink or not. 25 people who hate drinking.
The first kind of head accounted for a very small number of, “no wine is not a seat”, the banquet must be a drunkenness, their own drink, persuade people to drink, “Wuliangye” more than two or three bottles, half are poured on the ground. To these chiefs love to “drink” bad habits, the secretary should try to dissuade.
The second type of head is not a small number, which is a manifestation of their habits. They have to drink two mouthfuls at each meal, or look at the meal can not eat, take a little wine to, without high-grade, eat the meal down, talk more. In general occasions, the secretary can give care, let the cook prepare some wine, the head is very happy, and will not miss work.
The third kind of head of the majority, there is no wine does not affect the meal, on the wine, do not feel cheerful, not on the wine is not feeling spoiled. But in any case can not drink more, and do not want to drink more. To their secretaries do not have to force, and do not need to take special care.
The fourth kind of head of the number of people. They see wine fret, especially for a meal to drink a few hours annoyed to death. If they are forced to go to the mountain, the middle also have to go out a few times to hide, or halfway out of the scene. To them, the secretary should step in to bail out, and greet the accompanying food staff in advance. Don’t be a deadbeat to the head of the wine.
(C) on the head of the “receipt” of the habit
Receive is a gift from someone to receive down. The problem of receiving is more common than the problem of eating and drinking. There is not like to eat, there is not like to drink, but do not want to receive, refuse to receive but not many. There is a receipt, there is a gift, someone in a sedan chair and someone willing to carry the sedan.
There is a story: During the Warring States period, Zou Ji, a great official of the State of Qi, dressed up one day and asked his wife, “Who do you think is beautiful between me and Xu Gong in the north of the city?” The wife said, “Of course you are beautiful!” Zou Ji did not believe it, because Xu Gong was known as a beautiful man. The company’s main business is to provide a wide range of products and services to the public. The company is still not convinced. The company’s main goal is to provide the best possible service to its customers. Later, when Duke Xu came to Zou Ji’s house, Zou Ji was convinced that he was not prettier than Duke Xu in any way. The next day he met King Wei of Qi and recounted the incident. King Wei of Qi asked him, “Look for yourself, who is beautiful?” “Of course Duke Xu is beautiful.” “Then why do they say you are beautiful?” “My wife says I am beautiful because she favors me; my concubine says I am beautiful because she is afraid of me; my guest says I am beautiful because he begs me.”
From this we can know that those who give gifts to the head are mostly trying to achieve some purpose of their own from the recipient. Generally speaking, between sending and receiving, the giver often shows an active behavior.
Nowadays, there are many different ways to give gifts to leading cadres, and they are changing day by day. Call people feel wonderful, and sometimes feel helpless.
First, on the method of sending.
There are direct delivery, face to face to the head. There are indirectly sent to the head of the family, children, or through the secretary and other relevant personnel forwarding.
There are openly sent, mentioned in front of the head is the gift.
There are secretly sent, quietly put there without saying anything, or the surface does not look like a gift, but in fact in the intentional gift. According to the newspaper, a provincial organ a director often pulled by the unit to play mahjong, his tile skills are not really smart, but always he won. A few times even waist back home. But he also had to pay the price, in some documents, instructions or some what to sign his name on the note. As a result, mistakes were made.
Second, about the timing of the delivery.
The birthday of the chief or a family member is a good time to give a gift, especially the best time for the birthday of a junior that the chief likes very much.
When the chief is hospitalized, gifts are often inundated with people in the ward, in front of the couch, condolences piled up into a mountain. One chief likes to smoke, a hospital can receive dozens of red Tashan, Ashima.
When the chief went to the grassroots,
many people also sent things. Before leaving, someone said: “The head of the grassroots is quite hard, take two cigarettes to smoke.”
“Forget it, forget it, I have it with me.”
“Two cigarettes is nothing, this is not a gift!”
“Next time do not come to this set.” Still, they were accepted.
When they returned, someone said, “We have nothing good in this ravine, take a few ginseng head to take back to make wine, tonic body.”
“This is not good, right?”
“What’s wrong with that? A few ginseng is not worth much, your health is good for work. We are also contributing to the construction of the army!” He put a box of ginseng on the car seat.
The chief’s children went to school and joined the workforce, which was also an opportunity to give gifts.
“It’s worth celebrating when you go to college. Take care of yourself away from home. Take this blanket and put it on your feet.”
“Children become adults when they work. It’s time to dress up, this necklace will look good on you.”
The people who came to celebrate expressed in different languages the reasonableness of sending things, and inevitably interspersed with some kind of unreasonable demands.
Thirdly, about the variety of sending.
It can be divided into three categories. The first category is daily necessities, from chicken feed, local specialties, clothing, cigarettes, alcohol, lighters, health care products to high-grade furniture, cameras, VCRs and even video cameras and so on. The second category is the appreciation of goods, there are antiques, jade, jewelry, handicrafts, celebrity paintings, precious books, etc., ranging in value from a few dozen to tens of thousands of dollars. The third category is currency, from red envelopes and cash to credit cards. Peony card, Great Wall card, in which a few digits are stored, it is convenient to give to the head with.
Sometimes the receiving party also shows an active behavior, that is, to take. There are two ways, one is openly take, one is secretly so. The chief to a troop inspection, a banquet to eat a speciality of Xinjiang camel feet, very good taste, so said: “Zhang ah, your camel feet here is very good.” Before leaving, the unit leader prepared a considerable amount of camel’s feet to give to the chief, which is Mingna. The chief went to a unit to understand the situation, saw a good book, loved it, so he said to the secretary: “really a good book, I still see for the first time, we can buy there?” The secretary said, “This is a rare ancient book, I’m afraid it’s not for sale.” The troop leader understood the intention and said, “Take it if the chief likes it, we can only use it as a decoration, why not give the chief a good study.” This is the secret sauce.
The chief in the “collection” of the problem, the performance is more common, only the lightness of different.
(D) on the head of the “live” habits
The head of the problem of living is relatively simple. As the head of the equivalent level, generally speaking, live in a relatively high grade. Regiment-level live in a single room, the division above the suite, the room is not in the size, the key is to live comfortably, thoughtful service. Secretary in consideration of the head to live, to consider the habits of the head. For example, some chiefs like quiet, as long as the quiet is good, not necessarily high class.
(E) on the head of the “play” habits
The chief loves to play what has also developed. From the past walk, play ball, play poker development to watch video, dance, listen to music, sing karaoke and so on. The secretary should make arrangements according to the hobbies of the chief. Love to play chess, go out to bring chess, love to read books to prepare several books, and some only like to brag, after dinner and tea, the sky and the north blow a pass, finished sleeping. For those who love high-grade play the head, but also pay attention to remind him.
(F) on the head of the “line” habits
The chief likes to go out by train, plane or car? Like to drive a fast car or a slow car? The seat of the car should also be careful. The chief likes to sit in the front row or back row? These, the secretary should have a number in mind, do not compete with the head of the seat, making jokes, in foreign countries, leaders are sitting in the back row, while China, in addition to senior leaders, generally sit in the front row. This is because.
First, the leaders go out more without guards, the front row position is empty, so that the leaders have the possibility of choice; leaders sit in the front row with a wide line of sight, conducive to observing the situation on the way.
Second, the quality of China’s roads is poor, bumpy, the leaders sit in the front row than the back row of the smooth some, encounter potholes can also be found early a thought to prepare.
Third, the leader went out with more people, the back row sitting 3 people more crowded, sitting in the front row more comfortable. In addition, there is a traditional cultural psychological factors, many people think that the front row of people sitting than the back row of people to sit noble. So always guests, leaders to the front row please, over time on the convention. It is said that Cixi once imported a small car, she asked the driver to either drive behind her, or kneel to drive. Because of the inability to meet her requirements, and even indignant not to sit in a small car.
(G) the secretary of the head of the various habits should be held attitude
Secretary to understand the head of the habits of life, in order to comply with the needs of the head, in order to achieve the purpose of working with the head of harmony, and to achieve the best work of the head. This is not flattery. The head of the eating, drinking, sending, taking and other habits, to dialectically analyze, they have multiple: political transactions; friendship; emotional compensation; there is a balance of interests. In summary, it can be said that the exchange of power and money; human feelings; courtesy; gratitude. It cannot be regarded as corruption in general. Invitation to give gifts in China is a long history of custom, is a common feeling. During the Spring Festival, when you go to your friends’ and relatives’ homes to pay respects, you have to send boxes of snacks. You send me, I send you, after a big circle, and was sent back. If your in-laws come to visit you, it’s not right to not add two good dishes. In fact, this kind of treats and gifts is not very meaningful, but indispensable. The old head to visit, can not eat some good food? Before leaving can not send something? You have today, are people cultivated, this is emotional compensation, not to talk about corruption.
The secretary can have four attitudes towards the habits of the chief.
First, the normal habits of the head of life should follow him. For example, he goes to bed on time and gets up on time to work. The secretary should not learn from the night owl, reluctant to sleep at night, do not remember in the morning.
Second, the head of the peculiar habits of life should adapt to him. For example, he went to work late in the day and did the work at night, the secretary should also learn to work overnight.
Third, the head of the bad habits should remind him. For example, his respiratory organs are sick, but must smoke, the secretary should try to control him.
Fourth, the head of the bad habits of life to moderate him. For example, he saw the wine no life, a drink will be drunk, drunk on the nonsense, cursing, making a fool of himself. The secretary should do a good job in advance, instructing the relevant personnel not to fill the head. When drinking to grasp the fire, the drink for the drink for the drink, the cup to take away the cup. “The chief has a meeting tonight, I’ll drink this cup.” “The chief has been feeling, and then drink is not good, this glass of wine is exempt.”
Second, good knowledge of the head of the character traits
Everyone has their own character, the chief is the same. Since he is the leader, his character traits are particularly prominent. The secretary must accurately grasp the unique character of the chief.
The chief’s character traits can be broadly divided into these types.
Some chiefs are impatient, some chiefs are very steady.
some chiefs are very fast, some chiefs are very slow.
some chiefs are very bold, some chiefs are very restrained.
some chiefs are lively, some chiefs are subdued.
Some chiefs are rough, some chiefs are very delicate.
The head of the character traits for such a division, is to facilitate the secretary can accurately grasp the different characteristics of the head, in order to respond to the needs of the head, and then get along with the head of the co-workers.
The following is a brief introduction to how the secretary to adapt to the head of several major character.
(A) on the impatient character
Impatient character of the head, the biggest feature is to land on the ground, said dry immediately hands. To be a style, thunder and lightning. Many military chiefs over the years to develop such a character.
The secretary should pay special attention to this: the head of this character often lack of thoughtfulness, his decisions often do not count. One may not have the final decision, the second when he calmed down and self-denial. In particular, an angry discipline, punishment, the secretary should do some work privately to the staff concerned: “Although the head criticized you, scolded you, but that is in the fire, do not carry baggage. I as the secretary, the head of this I know very well. I don’t believe that when we meet again tomorrow morning, he will still smile at you.”
(2) About the bold character
The head of the bold character, the most important feature is generous and cheerful, people are loyal and straightforward, clear and bright, there is never any secret to keep in
mind. Just convey a provincial military-level documents, he walked when he met the directors may leak out in the conversation: “This issue you can pay attention to, the central government has the spirit of the document …… but you know on the line, do not spread. …… just now I gave you guys what to say?”
“Didn’t say anything.”
“Then it’s right.”
This secretary should pay special attention to this, this character of the head of the decision is more casual, anything is full of care. The subordinate’s request, request easily get in his promise. But his promises and often do not count, especially after the promise of alcohol, can not be trusted. “Want money well, 30,000 yuan is not much, can consider.” The secretary should promptly explain to people: the head of just drunken talk, never count, please do not have to take it seriously. Sober up and ask him again, he will forget.”
(C) on the restrained character
Restrained character of the head, the most important feature is the lack of courage and boldness, careful in everything, everywhere to be careful, fear of the word head, worry a lot. Do not dare to take responsibility, do not dare to do something, everything from the book, the spirit of the document prevails. No basis, or the need to adapt the implementation of things, they do not dare to make decisions, wait and rely on the seriousness of the idea. For example, in order to meet the needs of modern army construction, the relevant departments asked the head of B to replace the program-controlled telephone exchange between command organs and large units. He said, “It is indeed necessary, we have money ourselves, but have not seen the specific instructions from the top, this is not good.”
In this regard, the secretary should pay special attention to this character of the head of the decision hesitant, easy to miss things. Some urgent matters, major events, special circumstances of the matter, to his place to play stalemate. The secretary should take the initiative to participate in decision-making, reasoning, talk about the situation, prompting the chief to make up his mind. At the same time in the possible case, may be with other chief ventilation.
(D) on the rough character
Rough character of the head, the biggest feature is only care of the rough branches, regardless of the details. They are not confused about big things, small things are not clear, there is a shuttle angle, no lines. You do right he pretended to be confused, you do wrong he is very clear. Small things can bluff him, big things do not lie to him. He only cares about the principle, do not ask specific. Emphasis on the results, regardless of the process. A large construction task, he was only involved in the plan, as to how to implement, find a deputy or the specific leadership to do.
In this regard, the secretary should pay special attention to this character of the head of the decision is too rough, the lack of specific guidance. Many parts of the work are prone to problems, often due to small losses, resulting in losses that should not have. The secretary should do a good job to make up for the work, for the head of the well thought out, according to his basic principles to develop a specific implementation plan, the head of the neglect of all the little things in mind. For example, after the chief thought of the decision of large-scale operations of the troops, in the formation of documents, the secretary should make a detailed elaboration of the relevant organizational leadership, safety and accident prevention, confidentiality and other aspects of the work.
In addition, about the fast character, the biggest characteristic of this type of head is to do a good job before rest. On the slow character, the biggest characteristic of this type of head is to rest well before doing, and so on, and so forth. The secretary should be the relevant impact of its character traits, make the appropriate response.
Third, adapt to the head of the work style
Because the chief’s habits, characteristics and experience are different, they do their work in a different way. The chief according to their own way to do the work, the secretary should find ways to adapt.
The chief’s way of working is different as follows.
Some love to go to the grassroots, some love to squat organs.
Some love to speak long words, some love to speak short words.
Some love impromptu speeches, some love written reports.
Some love to work during the day, some love to work overtime at night.
Some love to meet to set up, some love to give individual instructions.
Some love collective discussion, some love individual dictation.
The chiefs’ different ways of working are habits they have formed over time. The reason why they take this way and do not use that way is because the chiefs think that this way can make their work effective, impactful and interesting to themselves. There is a Buddhist saying that many things in the world are neither right nor wrong in the first place; it is people themselves who decide whether they are right or wrong. This statement is not without truth. Is it right to love squatting organs? Yes. The leadership is to command the troops through the organs. Love to go to the grassroots right? Also true. How can we make decisions without understanding the grassroots? Love to speak long words right? “I can’t do it without talking. If you don’t talk about it, something will happen to him.” Yes. Is it right to talk short? “Talking too much is nonsense.” Also right. Love to work at night, right? “Too much interference during the day, can not produce results.” Yes. Is it right to love working during the day? “I fool around during the day and pretend to be a fool at night.” Also right. Each has its own reason, no need to force.
Secretary of the head of the grassroots love, you need to be able to suffer. The head of the love of squatting organs, it is necessary to report often. The head of the love to talk long, you need to write more. The head of the love of short talk, you need to refine. The head of the love of daytime work, it is necessary to keep the system. The head of the love of the night work, you need to practice the night war. The head of the love of collective discussion, need to be good synthesis. The head of the love of arbitrary, will need to be accommodated.
In short, the secretary should be able to make their own fully suitable for the head of the way of work, and the head of the cordial co-working, excellent play the role of staff assistant, to do their best for the construction of the troops.
Assist the head of the art of decision-making
Secretary as a profession, in a unit, depending on the size of its establishment, sometimes a person, sometimes several people, and sometimes it may be a team or even several teams. Their duties are not just to go in and out with the head, to help the head copy and write, to send and receive for the head.
In the senior organs of the party, government and military, there are often one or several think tanks, also similar to the secretary team, specifically for the head of the advice and counsel. Their advisory role, decision-making role, the rise and fall of all aspects of our country, playing a pivotal role.
We are talking about the secretary to assist the head of the decision, only from a certain unit, a certain side, or can be said, only on a secretary individual, to grasp the analysis.
Nevertheless, the role of the secretary in the decision can not be underestimated. So, what are some good methods that secretaries can use to assist the chief in decision-making? The following nine are provided here.
A random reminder method
The so-called random reminder method, is to seize the opportunity to advise the head at any time and anywhere.
Secretary often in the head of the side, encounter any problems, some ideas, you can speak out in passing. These suggestions, not necessarily to the entire work sets of programs, nor necessarily to the overall situation to present a complete view. Often from the work of the local, specific problems found at any time, to put forward constructive advice.
The key to the random reminder method is the word “random”. That is, I do not know when, what issue, the secretary found a problem, or the head suddenly asked the secretary’s views on a certain issue, the secretary should be, depending on the situation, to say a “son, ugly, cinderella” to. This requires the secretary to
One should pay attention to the collection of relevant information.
Random reminder is not the secretary only by their own clever mind, a bright idea, you can come up with a good plan, but mainly on the knowledge and information reserves; no rich knowledge and information reserves, all kinds of amateur, everything is a layman, even if the problem touches the nose, can not see, of course, can not find a way to solve the problem.
A unit of financial difficulties, the Ministry of complaints, that the reform tide is so rapid, why not open some companies to earn a few, so some production and management staff want to open a “chemical research company” to get a hundred thousand or eighty thousand, the head also agreed. Secretary × told the head: we are located in a busy downtown, surrounded by factories, research units, this “chemical research company” ready to launch new products in the market has been backlogged. Besides, this is not our advantage, we have to start production, the result is not only can not make money, I am afraid that even the capital will be lost. So the head of the market again sent people to investigate, the results are indeed so. The suggestion was adopted, and the idea of building a “chemical research company” was cancelled, avoiding a likely economic loss. Imagine, if the proposer does not know the market information, do not do market research, can be justified
Second, to master the timing of clever.
Secretary in the use of random reminder method, to make their own ideas, suggestions adopted by the head, we must pay special attention to the timing. For example, when the mistakes and losses in the work has been very obvious, your advice is good, but also can only be considered “hindsight”; when the mistakes and losses in the work has not been revealed, your advice is good, but also can only be considered “good worry”. Therefore, the secretary should always pay close attention to the chief’s attention to the hot issues, found the first signs of bad, you can immediately remind the chief of attention, and help the chief to analyze the potential dangers. After drawing the attention of the head, can immediately come up with a reliable improvement program.
Third, we must have the whole picture in mind.
Some secretaries are only responsible for a certain aspect of work, so they can only find problems and make suggestions from a specific part of the work. Although these recommendations are good and correct, but get the whole picture to measure, and seem too light weight, or one-sided. To the head of the overall situation, your suggestions are just a “drop in the bucket”, of course, can not be adopted. Therefore, the secretary only to understand the overall situation, in order to randomly remind, to produce a positive effect.
Second, the prediction-oriented method
The so-called prediction-oriented method is to predict the future results of a variety of visionary, valuable advice to guide the head of the correct direction to make up their minds.
Secretary’s predictive suggestions, in a sense, in the decision-making process plays a strategic guidance role, it is often the basis and starting point for decision-making. Predictions, such as mistakes, based on the decision, the cause will suffer significant losses. And the higher the level of forecasting advice, the higher the level of scientific decision-making, and can bring prosperity to the cause. This is, of course, with regard to high-level staff agencies.
Secretaries should be especially cautious in their forecast-oriented activities. Don’t speak wildly without 80% certainty. Before predicting the future, pay attention to collecting information, materials and data from all relevant parties, analyze the historical and realistic state and development trend as exhaustively as possible, make a more reliable description of possible future changes, and propose corresponding countermeasures for the future situation. At the same time, in the forecast thinking, but also thoughtfully consider the relationship between macro and micro, overall and local, long-term and near-term, so that the forecast can be comprehensive and thoughtful, to reduce errors to a minimum.
Third, the advice method
The so-called consulting suggestion method, is the head of the decision to be put into practice, through research and study, with sufficient facts, to put forward the feasibility and complementary views.
In the consultation process, the secretary should pay special attention to such points.
First, to prevent the map.
Think the head wants to set the subject is well thought out, it is best not to shake and deny it. So to the lower side of the haphazardly find a few one-sided examples to cite, the head of the determination to lead astray.
Second, focus on objective and comprehensive.
In the collection of data and information, to visit the site, to understand the actual situation and various reflections, timely identification of problems, comprehensive analysis, study of the relationship and changes in relevant aspects, design a variety of solutions and models to solve the problem, a variety of calculations and comparisons, from which to choose the best solution.
Third, write a consulting report.
Secretary to conduct a period of investigation and research, the first preliminary report, exchange views with the head, to obtain the support of the head, and after listening to the views of all parties, and then write a formal advisory report, asking the head to consider the adoption. As long as the facts are reliable, strong arguments, the head of the general can be adopted.
Fourth, provide information method
The so-called provide information method, is about the history of the reality, domestic and foreign, military and foreign, as well as the same industry information, provided to the head of reading, so that the head of the inspiration.
This method is a wordless voice, the wise secretary does not have to buzz around the head’s ears day and night, so that the head distracted.
Provide information method, there are active and passive provision, that is, the head of the request for a certain information, the secretary can quickly meet; the head did not take the initiative to request, but the secretary has guessed the head of the mind, can provide along with the trend.
Intentional and unintentional provision, that is, the secretary to provide the head of a certain information, is specifically for the head of a decision service; secretary to provide the head of certain information, is only for the head of reference, for a decision later spare.
There are provided in the direction and the reverse, that is, some information is the chief is happy to see; some information is the chief is not happy to see, but must see the inevitable.
V. Comparative selection method
The so-called comparative selection method, refers to the head of the decision to put forward a variety of options for the head to choose the best kind.
The best program in the decision is not obvious, a glance through, it is often hidden in the chaos of things. This requires a comparison to identify, from the identification of the best to find the best.
There are many methods of comparison, vertical comparison method, horizontal comparison method, vertical and horizontal comparison method, local link comparison method, and so on.
In the application of comparative selection method secretary should pay attention to.
First, the head should be clear.
That is to say, the secretary is not just passive to a variety of programs of a large pile of information or a few packets of files dumped on the head of the desk, so that the head of buried reading. Should be the secretary in the clutter of information, first sort out a few clear head, for the head of reference. The purpose of doing this is mainly to reduce the mental load and thinking load of the head, so that the head to focus on the choice of decision-making options and thinking about major issues. This is the modern management science advocates the “separation of discussion and decision”. That is, first let the secretary, the staff to collect a wide range of materials, full argumentation, develop a viable program, and then handed to the head of thinking, selection, make a decision.
Second, the analysis should be thorough.
The secretary should be as thorough as possible on all the things involved in the comparison, not only to analyze the overall situation of the relevant parties involved in the comparison, but also to analyze the internal structure of each party; not only to analyze the favorable factors and unfavorable conditions of each link, but also from the overall analysis of their pros and cons, so that in the comparison, a more reliable conclusion.
Third, the comparison should be comprehensive.
In the comparison, to participate in the comparison of the things from the cause, the passage to the end of a comprehensive than, objective than. When comparing, secretaries should especially prevent the mixing of personal feelings. For example, in the units involved in the comparison, some of your old unit, you say good; some of your old head, you say good; some units gave you what benefits, you say good. This is difficult to complete and objective, the comparison will lose its meaning.
Sixth, the rambling chat method
The so-called rambling chat method, refers to the time and place, no fixed procedures, no clear purpose of casual conversation, the exchange of certain ideas and feelings, talk about personal insights. This is the most frequent method for the secretary to make suggestions and assist the head of the decision.
Because of the unrestrained, so the speaker dare to speak, listeners and easy; the speaker’s feelings are true, listeners mean; heart-to-heart, not guard each other, in a relaxed and happy exchange of ideas. In the rambling chat secretary should pay attention to.
First, there is a purpose in the borderless.
That is, the surface is chatting with the head, but in fact (and certainly not all the time) is to do admonition work to the head. A ministry has been repeatedly rated by the higher levels of strict implementation of regulations advanced units, individual leaders have complacency, relaxed to grasp this aspect of the work, so that some of the first signs of accidents. One day, the chief and the secretary chatted while walking after dinner, the secretary introduced the chief to some sentries on duty during the walk and saw individual sentries violating discipline. The chief found the problem, the secretary and the other side of the “idle blow”, and finally make the problem was solved.
The second is to be cautious in small talk.
The secretary should always remember that although it is chatting, but not to erase the boundaries of the relationship between superiors and subordinates. Chat up to be measured, not limitless, no organization and discipline to talk nonsense. Once a chief and the secretary in the office chatting, talking about how to use people.
The secretary suddenly thought of Liu × × is a many years old standard soldier, but the standard soldier to the standard soldier, just do not use him. The secretary wanted to take the opportunity to chat
with the chief for him to voice his grievances. So the chief said: Liu × × is the old standard, but in this post for seven years, there is an opportunity to move a move.” The chief said: this person’s concept of fame and fortune is relatively strong, to suppress him.” The secretary said: “The concept of fame and fortune, who also have. Like you such a big head, but also have not?” Hearing these words, the chief suddenly changed his face: “How do you talk to me like this?” The chief came to such a sentence, the secretary listened to half a day after not back to the mind.
Seven, the complementary method
The so-called complementary improvement method, refers to the program has been determined, but there are local defects; or the implementation of the program is underway, due to changes in a variety of factors have produced certain defects, and the revision and adjustment.
Any level of leadership, even the most brilliant leadership, the determination he has made, the program he wants to set, can not be the best and most beautiful. There is a problem of revision, supplementation and improvement.
Supplementary improvement method can be applied to the initial program, the formal implementation of the program, the original program has been used, etc.. Secretary in the use of complementary method to pay special attention to.
First, we must be careful with dissenting words.
When the head of their own determination and determine the program to the secretary for advice, the head is generally very proud, very sure. The secretary should first confirm the reasonableness and feasibility of the program, on the basis of the overall affirmation of this program, point out the shortcomings and the need to modify the part. Especially those who are trusted by the head of the Secretary, do not rely on their own cleverness, as long as the head of the solicitation of your opinion, you skimmed or do not think on a set, causing the head of the determination to waver, confusion in thinking, and ultimately a basically reasonable program to change the non-donkey non-horse. So secretarial staff in order to prevent backtracking, when the head of the advice, first to correctly analyze and understand the original program, in order to play a complementary and perfect role.
The second is to look at the color.
That is, in the head of a certain determination and program to make suggestions, while saying that the head of the observation of the eyes and face. He is happy you will say more, he is not happy you will say less. This is not to throw in the towel, nor is it a mistake not to correct. This is determined by the identity of the secretary. Secretary is only the head of the assistant and staff, as a last resort, can not force the advice.
Third, to seize the focus.
Some of the chief’s determination and has set the program, in the Secretary’s view, there may be a lot of problems, and even need to push back and start over. But the head is only for you to add changes, rather than let you start another stove. This requires the secretary in the process of proposals, not to be exhaustive to explain the many articles, but after this and other, from the table to the analysis, the determination and the main problems in the program accurately and sharply pointed out, the weight, but also to the point that is sufficient to complement the perfect.
Eight, the same first and then different method
The so-called first with the method of dissent, is to put forward proposals before, it is best not to talk about the differences in understanding with the head, but to focus on the same issues, and then put forward different views.
Experienced secretaries, this first with the law as a “winning technique” to convince the head. The specific method is: first along with the head of the thinking of the board down to say, with the law of psychological inertia, to promote the head of the agreement, to get the head of the good feeling. This way the chief’s thinking will be inertia along the direction of certainty, when this sense of certainty is strengthened up, and then from small to large, from easy to difficult to put forward your different suggestions, the chief in the affirmation of your major premise will also be sure of those different views you. This simple technique, which is often used in real life, is also very effective. If you start out by seeking differences with the head and forming a confrontation, the effect will of course not be good. When using this method secretary should pay attention to.
First, boast the right amount.
That is, the words of praise and affirmation should be appropriate. Not full of praise “far-sighted”, “unique”, “wise and far-sighted”, so that people can hear the name of the affirmative, but actually flattering. The correct approach is to use irrefutable facts to affirm, so that people listen, your words of praise is factual, is from the heart.
Secondly, it varies from person to person.
Some chiefs are straightforward in nature, although he also likes people’s praise, but he hates the secretary’s praise, think that let the secretary praise has lost their identity, is not worth it. For such chiefs’ determination and ideas, once advice is sought, the secretary should be straightforward in his euphemism and exhort in his deliberation. A common opening phrase is: “Here’s how I see this issue.” “I have some thoughts on this matter as follows”. “This matter to let me speak, should be done this way, see if it works”.
Nine, to learn from the law
Cited as a lesson method, refers to the problem has occurred, resulting in adverse consequences, or after a major accident, to help the head to identify the causes, lessons learned, as a warning for future work and proposed.
In real life, the correct decision-making is difficult, the implementation of the decision process errors are often occurring. And the mistakes, especially in the face of major mistakes, the head is quite distressed. Repeatedly pursued by superiors, and even give certain people punishment; the same level of mutual complaints, and even cynicism; subordinate complaints, and even abuse a leader incompetence. These are likely to make those with the creative spirit of the head of the work in the future to become fearful, lose the sense of responsibility and enterprise, and even from then on a stumble, can no longer raise the energy, would rather make the work “soft” loss, but also no longer go “hard” to create. They will feel that this society is really “dry than standing, standing than watching”. To the head of the mistakes, the secretary can not stand on the sidelines, but to actively advise the head, in addition to find ways to reduce and recover losses as soon as possible, we must help the head of the “learn from” method to summarize the lessons learned, and then create a new situation in the work.
First, a clear hazard.
Secretary in front of the accident or setback, to help the head of the clear harm, and the damage caused by accurate statistics and evaluation, but also to the possible future impact, the necessary assessment, so that the head of the ideological understanding: the treatment of the superiors is reasonable, the public opinion is also understandable.
The second is to find the right cause.
Secretary to assist the chief from the accident or setback occurred, the development, the results of the whole process of thorough investigation, to propose ways to avoid the recurrence of similar accidents, and in the prevention program to seek a breakthrough in the positive direction of transformation.
Third, blow the wind to encourage.
Often to the head of a word of relief, so that the head of the gradual relief from the “crisis”, feel that mistakes or setbacks are normal. Who is in this position, who is in this context, who is in this event, there may be mistakes, this time let yourself happen, also count to others to pave the way. Thus, the head to a good state of mind, face reality, look to the future, to do a better job in this job.
Fourth, to help the chief improve reputation.
Generally speaking, when the head of some “grand” determination after the determination, always improve their reputation. Once the “grand” decision falls short, the masses of discontent will rise accordingly. Sometimes the head of some unrealistic wishes, but also to make a part of the people happy. Once these wishes fall short, the masses of complaints will follow. These are the things that leaders need to learn from. The problem is that some decisions are clearly achievable according to the normal operation, but due to the situation, there is an irreversible situation, which is related to the personal quality and ability of the decision maker. At this time, the secretary should use a variety of opportunities to explain to the masses, so that the masses understand the internal situation, so as to understand the difficulties of the chief, improve the trust of the masses in the chief, and make concerted efforts to create a new situation.
From the above nine points of discussion, we can learn the truth that
Smart chief, not in his own can come up with how many good ideas, but in his ability to adopt the number of good ideas proposed by the ministry.
Smart secretary, not because he can be the head of the adoption of how many good ideas, but because he can give the head of how many good ideas.
The art of understanding the head of the intention
Intention that the head of the basic ideas of decision-making, including the main views, opinions, approaches and requirements. The so-called understanding of the intention, in short, is to understand the basic ideas and requirements of the head of a decision.
We know that a very important feature of the work of the secretary is to “act with respect”, is to accept the instructions of the head before carrying out the main
work. Is “to me to do” rather than “I want to do”. Secretarial work of this “ordered” characteristics, we must seriously grasp and understand the head of the idea, accurately understand the head of the intention.
Therefore, understanding the intention is actually the beginning of the secretary’s work. The process of understanding the intention, in fact, is the secretary of the head of a certain will, vision and ideas, after understanding and digestion, into their own ideas, and finally into concrete action.
A, the essence of understanding the intention
What is the importance of understanding the intention in the work of the secretary? How should secretaries treat the head of the intention?
(A) understanding the intention is the basic professional ethics of secretaries
Professional ethics is a code of ethics and norms with professional characteristics. The cornerstone of the professional ethics of secretarial staff is the high degree of consistency between responsibility to the top and to the bottom, to the leader and to the people. Responsible to the top, responsible to the leadership of the specific embodiment of the secretarial staff to be able to accurately understand and implement the intentions of the head.
The essential meaning of secretarial work is to obey the leadership’s decisions, faithful to the established intentions and translate them into concrete and effective actions. Therefore, secretarial staff should respect the views of the leadership, carefully understand the basic ideas, not rash, not out of line, accurately grasp, strictly follow the vein of its ideas, reasonable arrangements, precise planning, the practical realization of the head of the intention. Never allow detachment from the premise, reversing the position; never think that the political level is high, grasp the situation fine, read more materials, strong writing skills, and the head than climbing high and low, secretly “slightly better than a chip” of superiority; never obey the yin and yang, or even make up their own ideas, another set, completely aside from the head of the intention, the immature views of individuals imposed on the The chief.
Of course, the secretary’s obedience to the chief’s intentions, not blind obedience, subservience. When the head of the delivery is ambiguous, the words do not mean, should be faithful to the premise of its meaning, appropriate integration, refinement, processing, perfect; when the head of the delivery of general, slipshod, misleading omissions, to properly supplement and amend, so that it is specific, strict, correct. And should not follow the gourd to draw a diagram, will be wrong on the wrong. If you find that individual chiefs to claim credit for passing the buck, distorting the facts in the account, creating something out of nothing, fabricating achievements, covering up mistakes, will seriously damage the prestige of the authorities and the interests of the people, the secretary should be public, remind, admonish, boldly “advise”, righteousness. Should not be a matter of selfishness, and protect themselves, silent; not to bend over backwards to please, take the principle of trading to win the hearts of the head.
(B) understand the intention is one of the ways to play the role of staff assistant secretary
Secretarial staff to carry out the work, in fact, is to play a staff assistant role in the leadership decision. The more important the work, the more important this role is.
In the actual management activities of the organization, the secretary’s work, in general, there are the following.
1, no delivery procedures and specific intentions, can be carried out by secretarial staff depending on the actual situation. This type of work generally involves only the specific daily affairs of the organs, more simple, they are more by the staff in accordance with the usual management ideas of the leaders of the organs, follow the general management procedures, according to the actual situation at any time to deal with their own.
2. There are procedures and intentions, requiring secretarial staff to be faithful to the leadership’s intentions. This type of work generally involves the organ important affairs, more complex.
3, there are procedures but no specific intentions, by the secretarial staff first according to the head of the rough instructions to develop a program, and then handed to the leadership group or leaders agreed or validated. This type of work are more important, but the leading group or leaders of specific intentions are not yet mature thinking, to be first by the secretaries instead of their own specific intentions and provide a preliminary program to consider or validate.
In the above three ways of working, secretarial staff to use their own political, ideological, policy and other aspects of basic literacy, mobilize their knowledge of a variety of situations and related to the synthesis of rigorous logical thinking. To the intention, or pick up the pieces, the head of the intention of some less than thorough, less appropriate places, to make up, amend, perfect; or for further analysis, synthesis, adjustment, trade-offs, and then, through their own actions will be the head of the intention to reflect a more systematic, thorough, accurate.
(C) understand the good intention, can improve the quality of secretarial work
This is determined by the characteristics of the head. As the head although they are different from each other temperament character, the way to deal with the problem is different, but they also have something in common.
First, the head of a certain issue repeatedly brewing, thinking about mature, before the subordinates or secretarial staff to confide in the intention, if the issue he has not been well thought out, is not let you go for.
Second, the head of the work of a longer period of time, experienced more storms, the general understanding of the lower situation is also more comprehensive. They are able to do a broad view, the overall situation, a high level. Therefore, they generally have a better grasp of the guiding ideology of a certain work, the work should pay attention to what issues, but also more thoughtful.
Third, the head of the ideas and intentions, often a collection of their leadership within the various aspects of the views, sometimes the party committee or the collective leadership of the views. As a result, his requirements for the work, is very authoritative.
These points above determine that if the secretary fully comprehends the head’s intention before acting, and always follows this intention in action, then the result, in fact, is the cohesion of the leaders’ experience, concentrating everyone’s wisdom, the quality is naturally higher.
(D) understand the good intention, can reduce the secretary work of ineffective labor
There is often such a phenomenon: the secretary staff worked hard to finish a job, but in the leadership was denied, and even several times rework, still pass. Here, the secretary staff is to do ineffective labor, take a detour, ha a white hard work.
How to reduce this ineffective labor? A very important aspect is to accurately understand the head of the intention. Comprehend the head of the intention, the work can be less detours, less suffering, reduce ineffective labor. On the contrary, if you do not understand the head of the intention, along with their own to play, the results of the work is likely to be far from the views of the head, the number of rework, and even labor without success.
There are many secretaries can not say that the ability to work is not strong, their requirements can not be said to be not strict, the work attitude can not be said to be not correct, but the results of their work is often in the head of the pass. Another situation corresponding to this is that some people are not very strong, but every work can pass, mainly in how to understand the head of the problem of intention.
Secretary only to their ability to work with the head of the intention of the combination, in order to do things to the satisfaction of the head.
Second, the head of the way to explain the intention
(A) the head of the intention to produce
From the source, the head may be inspired by a certain motive to produce the intention. It can be both the crystallization of the head of long-term work experience, but also the accumulation of the usual research; both the spirit of the policy and the specific circumstances of the unit of the superior convergence of understanding, but also the collective study of the entire leadership decision. It may also be inspired by something and a sudden outbreak of thought sparks.
From the degree of perfection, the head of the initial intention, some more mature, systematic, comprehensive; some are less clear, more simple, is to be processed “thought rough”. There are also the chief although standing high, a new perspective, grasp the key and the essence, with inspiration, insight, broad extension, but not yet set, need to further sharpen, optimize, to make it perfect.
(B) the chief’s intention to account
After the chief has produced the intention, it is necessary to explain to the secretary staff. Account is the starting point for processing, but also a prelude to the work of the secretary. Where the full-time, part-time secretarial staff to handle the important work arranged in the name of the head, should be after the account. If not perfect this procedure, the secretary is difficult to understand the head of the intention and the specific requirements of various aspects, will certainly be closed, thinking hard, although reluctantly work, but contrary to the views of the head, is bound to repeat several times, time-consuming and laborious. Or not combined with the region, the unit’s work practices, flow for the scene of the work. Even against the actual
needs, hindering the development of work activities.
As the head of the temperament, character, ability and leadership methods are different, the way to explain the intention is also different. This requires secretarial staff have the ability to understand the different types of head of the intention, from the author’s many years of experience in the work of the authorities, the head of the intention, there are several ways.
1, from the degree of confession.
Some chiefs are concise, that is, only a few words on the crisp and clear to his ideas, the inner meaning, by the secretary to taste in detail, or even sometimes just say: × × time there will be, I hope you write a material. ××The company’s main goal is to provide the best possible service to its customers. As for what to write the content he did not mention a word. Some heads are detailed, that is, what should be written, how should be written, and even each layer should express what content, are given a clear explanation.
2. from the content of the confession.
Some of the head is the viewpoint type, that is, only a few points, as for the specific content inside the viewpoint by the secretary staff to think separately. Some of the head is the material type, that is, only to many of his understanding of the detailed materials, as to what these materials illustrate the problem, should be summarized how the view, the secretary to summarize, to summarize, the head is not ready.
3. from the means of delivery.
Some chiefs are direct, that is, like to call the clerk, face to face personally, until the clerk understand remembered so far. This chief believes that a pole should be inserted in the end, their intentions should be directly, clearly, face to face to reach the clerk. Some heads use indirect methods. Prefer to give his intentions to his direct subordinates, and then let these subordinates and then one level down to the next, after several transfers to the clerk. The head of this approach believes that all parties should be mobilized, and should make their direct subordinates also understand their intentions, so that there is no misunderstanding in the leadership relationship.
4. From the quality of delivery.
Some of the head is a high level, that is, when the intention of the delivery, language condensed, clear method, specific requirements, as long as the secretary according to the head of the delivery to seriously implement it. Some are low-level delivery, that is, the head of the idea may be very good, but in the delivery, it is unclear, said the rational not strong. Sometimes the secretary listened to half a day, not even understand the meaning, the main idea is not clear.
5. from the frequency of delivery.
Some of the head is a one-time delivery, that is, only one conversation, will be their intentions expressed, ironclad, only this time, and then not change. Some of the chiefs are a number of sexual confessions, that is, by talking with the secretary many times, sometimes repeatedly stressed, sometimes overturned, sometimes abandoned and used, so that their intentions continue to clear, deepen, and focus. Especially for some of the more complex work only once is not possible to explain clearly.
Third, the key to understanding the intention
Above, we talked about the head of the way to explain the intention, which is only one aspect. In practice, more important is another aspect – how to understand the intent.
(A) the process of understanding intentions
The chief of the intention, only the secretary to do the underlying, and not exactly the same as the main idea. Secretary staff must further understand, deepen, and perfect this intention.
Understanding to be clear. The chief is busy, the head of more, attention often shift. Secretary in receiving the task must follow the thoughts of the leading comrades, listen in detail and take notes on the main points. The unclear issues on the spot for instructions, the words do not mean to ask carefully to understand the original meaning, and strive to grasp the spirit and details of all aspects. On the contrary, if you nod, the head of the Secretary has been fully comprehended, the delivery will be omitted some specific details, the Secretary later to ask for instructions, it is possible that the time has changed and do not understand.
Comprehension should be comprehensive. Figure out the purpose, time frame for completion, according to determine the steps, methods, requirements and action plans, to facilitate integrated planning within the limits of time allowed. If “to its faint, so that people are obvious”, the result is bound to work without success or even cause adverse consequences.
The comprehension should be profound. According to the current basic tendencies and the head of the work schedule, analysis and perception of the background and process of the head of the intention. If necessary, you can follow up supplementary investigation, in order to master the head of the thought process, a more profound understanding of the intention, so as not to scratch the itch, specious.
The main idea of the work consists of a variety of elements, the connotation is very rich. Under the premise of not contradicting the original intention of the head, the secretary should repeatedly, lateral diffusion of thinking, to name a few, the actual work, professional knowledge, policy provisions, mass requirements, convergence, enrichment into the head of the intention. For example, “× × party committee work guidance outline” is centered on “reform, pragmatic, innovative, first”. Secretary of the proposed, not only the leadership of the collective discussion of the ideological perspective, focus, goals, measures are centered around this center, but also with the instructions from above, the local situation, etc., to extend this central idea to the chief did not consider or not more detailed, more specific consideration of the views, work, the situation, so that the whole work of the guiding ideological basis more solid, based on a more adequate, more specific reasons, and The measures are more circumspect and strict.
Secretary must follow the head of the intention to work, this is a basic principle. However, from the head of the initial intention to the final stereotype before, the secretary can mobilize their own learning, knowledge, talent, ability, to try to discover, so that it deepens; cite one to make a comprehensive. And then extended to the head of the initial intention failed to take care of the aspects.
Secretary in the planning, when found that the initial intention of the head of the handover there is bias, omissions, mistakes, contradictions, to dare to speak frankly based on reason, should not listen to it. In order to improve the main idea, a wide range of sources, the head is often discussed with the secretary or other relevant personnel, encourage them to speak freely, without frame, from different angles to find problems, put forward ideas, and even deny the initial intention. Of course, the secretaries of the head of the initial intention of the play and amendment, the head of the approval needed to establish.
Through the understanding, integration and play, so that the head of the intention to deepen, improve, stereotypes. Once the head of the determination has been made, the main purpose has been set, there should be no further objections, but need to happily and faithfully around the final determination of the intention to act.
(B) the way to understand the intention
Secretary to accurately grasp the head of the intention, what specific ways should be taken?
1, good at grasping the work of the head of the hot spot, tracking pursuit.
The chief’s work hotspots is the most concentrated performance of the chief’s intention in a certain period of time. Seize this point. It is the same as grabbing the core of the head’s intention, you can work with the head of the synchronization, the same goal. However, the head of the intention is formed around the central work of the party in each period, with stages and continuity. For this reason must also be the head of the thought, system mastery, focus on tracking.
2, good grasp of the head of the way of thinking, collaborative action.
Each head has his thinking characteristics and thinking methods. Secretary to be a good chief of staff, must be good at understanding, grasp and strive to do: when the head of a certain work, a certain thing has a certain thinking bud and thinking orientation, we should be able to think together; when the head of a certain work, a certain thing brewing, we should be able to coincide; when the head of a decision, the deployment of a certain work, we should be able to understand; when the head of tracking a certain goal, looking forward to When the head of a certain effect, we have to be able to cite a reaction, not only know what it is, but also know what it is; when the head of the need for a certain material and information, we have to be able to think in advance, do in advance, to improve the service ahead of time.
3, good at grasping the head of the flash point of thought, to deepen.
Generally speaking, the head of the views put forward, most of them are more complete and profound, but a new job or temporary treatment of a problem, often with feeling, the views put forward is often fragmented, fragmented. The head of these scattered, fragmented views, the secretary should be carefully understood, do not be afraid of these views fettered their thinking, not to mention the contempt and rejection. To know, in the scattered among some of the insightful views. The chief in impromptu speech also has a new idea. We want to be a good chief of staff, we must be good at catching the head of the flash point of thought, through consultation with the head and in-depth
investigation, efforts to explore and deepen, in order to further improve the head of the decision to guide the work on the surface.
4, good at capturing the head’s intentions from multiple angles, comprehensive induction.
In this regard, one is to be good at grasping the point, that is, to grasp the main points of the head of the intention and the core, the head of the views expressed with the spirit of the top and the actual string up for comparison. Both consistent with the spirit of the head, and with the actual unit, to justify. Secondly, we should be good at expanding the surface, with the main leadership ideas as the main line, absorbing the views of other leaders in many ways, pooling ideas and forming an overall decision. For example, in the drafting of the leadership speech, we should not only cut with the specific speaker in detail, so that the speaker to set the outline, but also to absorb the views of other leaders in many ways, on the basis of this comprehensive analysis, scientific cutting, so that the correct views from all sides can be integrated into, so that the rework rate is relatively small.
5, good at grasping the head of the personality characteristics, different from each other.
We have contacted the head, different personalities, there are different leadership styles and ways of working. For example, some heads of the classical literature base is thicker, do reports like to quote the scriptures, for such a head to draft a speech, we should appropriately quote some allusions to achieve the purpose of using the past to explain the present, and then, for example, from the grassroots transferred up to the head, the situation below is more familiar, for such a head to draft a speech, we should give some examples of his familiar. On the contrary, we can not give the head of the lower literacy level, specifically write some remote and difficult to recognize the word, let him read up a head of sweat.
(C) to understand the intention of the variation
In the understanding of the head of the intention, no matter what way to take, there are two issues need special attention.
1, the secretary should develop a good habit, that is, should concentrate on listening, with a pencil, even if the head of the impromptu speech, should also be recorded in detail for later use. In the serious record at the same time, but also actively think, not comprehend the problem boldly asked, no need to be careful. A department has a combat staff shortly after serving, accepted the chief of staff explained a military correspondence writing task, because he did not quickly write down the main points, doubts and embarrassed to ask again, for fear of affecting the work of the leadership, writing only by imagination, the result in the troop exercises, because the writing of correspondence does not meet the requirements and rework, delaying the exercise time. The actual work shows that all the comrades who have asked the head of the intention when accepting the task, the work progresses smoothly, the leaders are mostly satisfied; all the comrades who do not clarify the intention to do the work, it is likely to rework, not only affect the work and even delay the event. Experienced secretaries, often while accepting the task, while actively thinking. The scope of thinking is: to implement the intention of a variety of possible situations, timely, so that the head can give a clear answer; to the head of the intention of possible deviations, while the head has not yet considered the maturity of the correction of the correction, the negation of the negation; to the head of the intention of the place involved but not perfect enough, not deep enough, through a discussion-type study, so that it can be perfected before the action profound up . Here the secretary should pay attention to: serious thinking must be closely around the head of the main idea of the intention; bold questions must be used to explore the tone of modesty, to prevent and the head of the intention to have the suspicion of opposition. This talent, not only by the secretary’s intelligent mind, agile thinking, but also must have a good understanding of the actual situation at the lower levels and understanding, as well as a wealth of practical work ability. It can be seen that if you want to do a good job as a secretary, as Lu You a poem chanted: “You want to learn poetry, Kung Fu outside the poem.”
2, in the process of understanding the intention, if the head of the idea is correct, the intention is also reasonable, then we do it on the line; but when the head of the intention of the sloppy, wrong omission or even error, we should do it? In such cases, of course, the secretaries can not be self-righteous, not to mention the “servant” for the “master”, but through some clever ways to their correct ideas, into the head of the intention. These methods are generally: propaganda policy law, provide the next method, the introduction of experience, to fill the gap method. Commonly used statements are: “this issue is very good, but I have this little idea”; “this issue is quite comprehensive, I will add a few points to see if it is okay”; “this issue, whether you can change the formulation ” and so on.
Good understanding of the intention is a very complex mental process. It is a very important aspect of the correct handling of the relationship between the head and the secretarial staff. It requires secretarial staff not only to have a clever mind, agile thinking, the ability to adapt, but also the need to have a correct understanding of the Party’s guidelines and policies of awareness, as well as a true understanding of the actual situation below. In this way, not only can they make good suggestions in the process of understanding the intentions, but they can also achieve the intentions of the head in an excellent manner.
The art of maintaining the dignity of the head
Dignity, the word is very sacred, but also very common.
Dignity means dignity and solemnity. Its external expression is a person’s honorable status and prominent position; its internal requirements are a person’s self-esteem and basic personality. Dignity is a natural requirement for realizing self-worth and thus social value. Dignity is also an important element in safeguarding one’s rights and interests and thus the rights and interests of others. Therefore, dignity should be sacrosanct.
Whether a person has the dignity he should have does not depend on his subjective desire, but is determined by the following conditions: first, his social status; second, the amount of material wealth he possesses; third, the size of his contribution to society; fourth, the level of his prestige in the public. Of course, different people have different criteria for the orientation of dignity. In some people’s view he is very dignified, while in other people’s view, he is undignified. But in any case, as long as a person actually has one of the above conditions, he also has the corresponding dignity.
Dignity is important to life and society. A person’s dignity is compromised, is the person’s character is insulted and the value of the devaluation. Therefore, in real life, the power of discipline is often expressed in the dignity of some people to be sanctioned, such as administrative sanctions, party discipline, demotion, and so on. Subject to disciplinary sanctions, he will also lose the corresponding dignity, and will be looked down upon. If you can’t stand it, he may lose the courage to live or lose his mind, become cruel and aimlessly retaliate. On the other hand, discipline often manifests itself in the form of encouragement for some people in terms of dignity. Merit, awards, honorary titles, etc. When a person receives an honor, he gains the corresponding dignity and is respected by people. A person with dignity becomes greater and more noble in life.
Although dignity has an objective nature, it must be permeated with great artificial power and shows many wonderful features. For example, there are people who are dignified on the surface, but are quite empty inside; there are people who are respected to the face, but are despised behind the back; there are people whose dignity is naturally formed in practice, and there are people who are endowed by their positions.
The dignity of the chief in the army is particularly important. Because he has to command thousands of troops, to fight the war, and to order. Whoever becomes a chief must have a certain dignity and inviolability, the larger the officer, the more sacred. In this regard, the “internal affairs regulations”, “disciplinary regulations” a considerable part of the content is to maintain the dignity of the chief and developed. The simplest example is that the regulations stipulate that any soldier, when he sees a superior leader, must salute. This is a concrete manifestation of maintaining the dignity of the chief. At the same time, we will also find that once a person has assumed a certain position of head, he has a special treasure and love for his dignity. If compromised, it is not tolerated.
As a secretary, working every day at the head, in the maintenance of the dignity of the head of the issue has a special significance and requirements. In addition to those generally follow the principles, should also pay attention to the following such small issues.
A, not in the symbol of the chief position status of carelessness on the small things
Some small things, seemingly insignificant, and actually meaningless, but people are used to judging a chief’s position, identity and status through these small things, to confirm the degree of dignity he has in this leadership group. Although many times these small things are just a formality, no utility in itself, but if the secretary can not properly handle, the head of the mouth does not say, but in
the heart of muttering. For example, the convening of the General Assembly, the issue of seating on the podium, who is on who is not, who is in the center, who is on the left and who is on the right, it is very delicate. Whether necessary or not, each General Assembly corresponding level of leadership are seated on the podium, although he did not say a word, sitting on the stage in full view of the public is not comfortable, but if you miss a leader who should be seated on the stage, or sitting at the head of the people who should be under him, he will feel that his dignity is compromised, the staff may have trouble.
Then again, the podium placed microphone, and do not underestimate. Two deputies, only to a seat in front of the microphone, the other would not speak, but the heart is not comfortable, but also must say a few words, let the secretary staff to take a microphone to.
Another example, photo, camera, the lens to whom, how long, to grasp the right proportion. Only the main office shots, no deputy shots, not appropriate; deputy for the report, too many shots, the main office as a companion, too few shots, also not; two deputies, a lens more, a lens less, more not.
For example, the speech of several heads, whether they are reported and issued? Is the full text published or summary published? Is it made into a document or issue a newsletter? This should also be handled properly. The full text of the commander’s speech issued, the political commissar’s speech summary issued, can it work?
For example, the order of departure of the head of the trolley can not be arbitrarily arranged, the senior head in front of the lower head in the back; the military chief in front, the political chief in the back. Arranged wrong, there are also problems. A troop military exercises, the head of the convoy departure, E head of the car did not fire, W staff officers will let E head of the subordinate a leader of the car first step. Originally, the head of E is less senior, a leader is very unconvinced, there is a gap; this time, the head of E’s car followed by eating all the way to the ash, very annoyed. When he arrived at the destination, the head of E let the driver go to rest, but ordered the staff officer to wash the car, W staff officer is still in the dark, do not know what kind of staff officer business the head wants him to master.
For such trivial matters, secretarial staff should be thoughtful and properly handled so as not to inadvertently damage the dignity of the chief. It should be noted that the head is also an ordinary person, with the character of ordinary people, but he is in a high position, but also have a different character from ordinary people. Some of the head of the command of thousands of troops, very confident, and failure may be very inferior; some of the head of the burden, strong-willed, but with shortcomings and may not be able to withstand criticism, seemingly very fragile; some of the head of the position, is the head of the crowd, leading by example, leading by example, once out of office, individualism and seem particularly serious. The psychology and behavior of individual leading cadres often make it incomprehensible: yesterday morning was so majestic, the afternoon announced the order to leave retirement, this morning how even the clothes are wide open? There is a general, great verve, never speak with his hands behind his back, and after the removal from office, most of the year embarrassed to go out. The position is raised, awareness does not necessarily improve with, for this, the secretary staff should understand. This is also one of the reasons to avoid damaging the dignity of the head in some minor matters.
Second, do not easily call the head of the last name or name
Name, but a symbol, is to facilitate the interaction of people and produced. It does not have a noble or low level in itself, but it can be distinguished with the person’s illustrious and illustrious, with the person’s humble and humble. The name of Yue Fei, people will be the national hero oil respect; mentioned Qin Hui, people will be the traitorous thieves hate to the bone. The chief’s childhood maiden name may not be elegant, what “Tie Dan”, “bolts” may have, but with the chief’s status of prominence and power to increase, the name will also become honored. Under normal circumstances, the general people call the head of the name, it may offend the dignity of the head. It is the custom of our military to call comrades within the party and positions outside the party. As a secretary, the head of the ministry and service personnel, should try to avoid calling the head by name, which should also become the practice of the secretary.
An officer just transferred to the organ work, one day to the head of the matter, salute said: “Fu Commander”, the words did not finish, the commander turned him a look: “You know my surname Fu?”
“You know and still call me that?”
“Well, how do you call it?”
“Go back and ask your director.”
The officer hurriedly went to the director, who said, “Just call him ‘commander’, don’t add Fu, it’s not good to add ‘Fu’.”
“Really a melon, the commander’s surname is you call? We have a commander in this unit, not to call his surname can be wrong? Besides, the commander’s surname is ‘Fu’, and everyone adds a surname in front of his position, the commander can never be ‘positive’.”
“The three vice commanders together, I look for one of them, how to address ah?”
“As secretary, you can eyeball the deputy military commander you are looking for. When eye-to-eye with the chief, then address ‘Vice Chief’, he will know you are calling him. Understand?”
In particular, some chiefs’ surnames themselves are a bit indecent, and calling out makes it possible to create ambiguity, which naturally undermines dignity. For example, the surname Gou, you call him Gou Division Chief, people heard it thought “dog division chief”, of course, not appropriate. There are also chiefs surnamed Diao, although he is the Chief of Staff, but with the addition of the surname, it has become “Diao Chief of Staff”. He has been the head of the decades, but always “Diao”. He is very taboo, you should not call it so.
The chief has a clear position, as the ministry, under normal circumstances, not called the position and called the name of the chief, indeed, a loss of respect, loss of dignity, secretarial staff to pay special attention.
Third, do not casually point or pat the head with a finger
First of all, an example: a professor of a college, a major in the division. When he was a correspondent, once greeted the instructor, in the instructor’s shoulder gently tapped, the instructor fire: “What are you doing? My shoulder is you patted?” The instructor’s fury sobered him up for most of his life: the chief, no matter how big or small, as a subordinate is not to be patted. From then on he never patted anyone who was higher in rank than him. But he didn’t quite understand why he got angry after gently patting the instructor. After that, he also became a leader in the army, and since his subordinates never patted him either. So he didn’t quite understand how he felt after being patted by his subordinates. Later, he was transferred to an institution and rose to the rank of a full division and a major, a professor in the hall. Once he was standing in front of the courtyard when he was suddenly tapped heavily on the shoulder, and turned around to see that it was the head of the canteen cooking team. Because to eat in the canteen, offending the head of the cooking team is not easy to do. He said with great feeling, my own mentality shows that when the official was patted by the subordinate heart must be uncomfortable.
Pointing or patting, is a way of communication between people. Away from a certain distance, with a finger point, greeting; close to the side, with a hand patting the shoulder, arm. General colleagues or between people familiar with each other, is normal behavior, are acceptable. But used to point, pat the head is a disrespectful behavior. It can be said that subordinate staff either pointing or patting the head, are likely to make the head of the dignity is violated.
Therefore, the secretary should pay attention to do: First, when calling on the head, you can not use your finger point. For example, the political commissar is in a meeting, the secretary pushed open the door to call out: “political commissar”, and then a hook hand, “you come here a moment.” This is a disrespectful action, the political commissar will not be pleased. Second, when talking with the chief, you should not pat the chief. For example, when talking happily, the secretary taps the chief’s shoulder repeatedly, “Chief, you’re so right.” The chief may immediately change his face. Third, to the head of the work, you do not have to use your fingers to cross. For example, to the head of a certain work, to talk about their own determination, pointing hands and feet and say: “Chief, my determination is very big!” The chief is certainly not happy.
Fourth, not in public to correct the chief’s shortcomings and problems
Secretary is the chief of the subordinates, is to serve the chief, no authority to criticize the chief’s shortcomings and faults, or give correction in public regardless of time, occasion and place. Secretary to the head of the shortcomings of course can not take a completely irresponsible attitude, especially the Secretary to participate in the head of certain decisions, found that the head of the error should be corrected, but that is conditional.
According to general experience, the secretary of the head of the shortcomings in public, should take the following attitude.
First, not in public.
Out of sight, pretend not to know, let nature take its course, let the boss correct it on their own or wait for the appropriate time to raise again. A chief loves to curse, “shit” is his verbal language, speak for five minutes to curse on several sentences. One day a group of male and female college students to the army exercise. The secretary accompanied the head to visit. Conversation from time to time with this verbal phrase, in front of everyone the secretary can not correct, pretend not to hear, facial expression a serious, the surrounding people will not have a big reaction. On the way back, the secretary said, “Chief, the evening of the symposium, you do not speak like training soldiers. Girls cry when scolded.”
At the beginning of the symposium, the head of the speech, he just said a “mom” word, found some female students cover their faces and laugh, or lowered their heads, suddenly remembered the secretary’s reminder, busy to change their mouth: “Mom, ah, mom and dad for you to go to college is not easy.”
Second, do not underestimate the ridicule.
The chief made a mistake, and even made a fool of himself, the secretary must not follow the coaxing laughter, not to mention as a laughing stock behind the discussion. Can take the necessary methods to prevent similar situations from happening again. The director of a political department in the auditorium of thousands of people in the General Assembly to give a welcome speech, the “thousands of miles” read “thousands of miles super super”, so that the auditorium full of people laughing. The secretary did not laugh at the head of the low level, but in future writing, try to use less out-of-the-way words, or in the difficult to recognize the word next to the sound note. The chief is very satisfied with this.
Third, not head-on.
To the head of the opinion or have ideas, can not take a confrontational approach, in front of everyone to reveal the head of the old bottom. A director was transferred to a regiment political commissar, the heart can not think, the branch assembly director criticized him fame and fortune thinking serious, low awareness. He retorted at the time: “when you were transferred to the deputy director, emotions than I made a fierce, three days did not get up, what qualifications to criticize me.” The director was embarrassed in front of the crowd.
Fourth, do not just interject.
Some of the chief’s shortcomings and faults, often in the conversation with subordinates exposed, the secretary found, but also do not have to intervene to correct. Once the head of a troop B to find a subordinate to talk, ready to transfer him to another unit to serve, ask him what opinion. b chief dry mouth for two hours, the subordinate is silent. b chief began to beat the table angry. b secretary saw, kindly intervene and said: “chief, do not get angry.” And then turned to the subordinate said: “The chief talked with you for nothing so much reason, you take a stand.” The subordinate glared at him, “How old are you?” and turned away. The chief had a fire in his belly and came at the secretary: “Today is your talk or my talk, no big deal, the talk is all because of you.”
The secretary always and everywhere to maintain the dignity of the chief, which is not only the need of the chief, but also the need of the secretary. The chief will never because the secretary tolerance and generosity, can tolerate, take the initiative to take responsibility and think the secretary incompetent, but on the contrary will be very trust you, reuse you, so you have a greater use.
China has a micro-fiction prize. This must have been the inspiration for the joke below. It is circulating online in the PRC.
Imperial China had a rule of avoidance — officials were not allowed to be the top leader in their own hometown. This is observed in China today although like for any rule, “when a measure is imposed from on high, a counter-measure is devised down below”. The Chinese governance system is better understood as a loose coalition of little brothers (but locally big) under a big brother in Beijing who has great difficulty herding thousands of little brothers in line. The Communist Party strives to be the glue that holds a decentralized state together, how effective this works for the Party and the state varies from time to time and from leader to leader. See my blog post here 2002: Wired China: Many Hands on Many Switches.
When asking the question “Whose Hand is on the Switch?” about the Internet in China we need to bear in mind that there are many hands and many switches. Chinese provincial and local governments and indeed various parts of the central government have far greater coordination problems than we experience among the federal, state and local governments in the United States. China might be thought of as a decentralized de facto federal state that lacks federal institutions that facilitate central control and coordination such as the federal court system and regional offices of central government ministries. China is best understood not so much as a Big Brother state but as a loose collection of thousands of provincial and local Party and government little brothers. Many of the provincial little brothers have only nominal allegiance to Big Brother in Beijing. Local officials want to control media not just for Beijing’s purposes but also to prevent Beijing to know about their own shortcomings. Many orders and regulations from the central government are ignored from the outset or forgotten after only a few months.
The joke below reminds me of several stories my now-deceased Chengdu writer friend Yin Shuping (aka Yin Ren) told me — he is gone so now I can tell the tale.
My friend writer Yin Shuping told me ten years ago that his district of Chengdu city, Longquanyi, set up a development project in the Anhui Province hometown of the then Sichuan Province Communist Party Secretary Liu Qibao to help persuade him to support the district’s big industrial zone construction project. Another part of the scheme was to offer the son of then PRC Premier Wen Jiabao, an investment advisor for a company in northeast China, extremely favorable terms for investing in the development zone. For more background, see the 2012 New York Times report “Billions in Hidden Riches for Family of Chinese Leader“. These stories can make one sympathize as many Chinese do with General Secretary Xi’s clampdown on corruption. There is generally a political spin to corruption crackdowns though.
Local government and party officials were also forced to make ‘voluntary loans’ to the district government I heard from both Yin Shuping (himself retired from a long literary life that started as a very young Xinhua war correspondent — a Chinese ‘volunteer’ in a DPRK uniform — covering the War to Resist American and Help Korea in the early 1950s) and from another person who then worked in a local government office.
Another fund-raising tactic of the local government was to invent fake dissidents. The central organs of the Communist Party and government, always worried about maintaining ‘social stability’ paid vast amounts to local governments to support stability maintenance. Around sensitive times the local government would detain people as the guest of the Party and State, not necessarily under bad conditions, at guesthouses to keep them out of circulation. The local government realized that manufacturing fake dissidents and detaining them was a money-maker! Shakedowns of Party members for this and that are not unusual. A Chengdu Party member I knew complained of incessant requsts from the Party organization for voluntary contributions because of this or that disaster somewhere or other, saying it made him want him feel his local party organization was more about shakedowns than anything else. It made him want to leave the Party but “Joining the Party is easy but leaving it is hard. They will always ask you why do you want to leave the Party?! why?! why!”.
Such stories could happen anywhere. In China, with Party and government control of the media and manipulation of the legal system — every level of Communist Party organization has a ‘political and legal affairs’ committee that tells judges how they should rule on sensitive (involving interests of or embarassment to local or national Party leaders and their families) and another that gives guidance to local media so that it does not offend local leaders. The central pattern is reflected layer upon layer all the way down to the urban and rural township level, the lowest level of government administration in the PRC. Nothwithstanding the rapid rise in living standards China has seen with its recovery from Mao’s man-made famine and Cultural Revolution, the totalitarian configuration of the Chinese political system exposes people to more abuses than in some other places.
See some of my previous translations and postings such as:
First Prize of National Micro Fiction Awards — “Sickness”
Once again he was admitted to the hospital. He had had this illness many times before and his work unit, neighbors and friends had become accustomed to his many hospital admissions. Not many would come to see him so he would always get very lonely.
This time, he got an ominous feeling, hospitalized only a few days. People came to visit him incessantly. Work unit leaders, colleagues, neighbors, friends, and some people he hardly had anything to do with or even rarely talk to each other came as well. Everyone was carrying big bags, flowers, fruits, and all kinds of beautifully packaged nutrition products piled up in a ward. Everyone said the exact same words of comfort. Even the hospital leadership came over to ask about his condition. The medical staff has never been more warm and thoughtful. All this frightened him.
He muttered to himself, it really does seem like this is the end! The more people visited to comfort him, the colder his heart grew ……
Soon, his son who worked away from home all year in a distant place where travel was difficult rushed home. Wasn’t it obvious what was going on?
He took his son’s hand and asked desperately, “Son, be straight with me, how many days do I have left?”
The son leaned down and said gently, “Dad, what are you talking about? You’re fine! The hospital director has said that you are doing well and you can go home after a few more days.”
This made him feel even worse. He couldn’t control himself. He said, “Son, don’t lie to me again! So many people have come to see me this time, and even though you are so busy, you rushed right back, I must have come to the end of my life, I won’t survive even for a few more days!”
The son smiled and whispered in his ear, “Dad, I was transferred back to the city. I’ll be the next city party secretary.”
Damn it all, I thought I was going to die. This was so scary! ~ Chinese-style social relationships really can scare people to death!