This year’s anniversaries of the 1919 and 1989 student protests in China will again highlight the Chinese authorities’ contradictory attitudes toward the two movements. As the People’s Republic looks ahead to the 70th anniversary of its founding this October, the country continues to reckon with its own history.
What is a Big-Character-Poster? It is a type of political writing, expressed on paper—in handwritten characters—and posted in a public place; a wall covered with such posters established a forum for discussion and dissemination.
China’s Palace Museum has always been a symbol of political legitimacy, its art and artifacts a kind of currency. Making imperial treasures public to the new nation, it first opened its doors in the Forbidden City in 1925. But many of its finest pieces are no longer in Beijing.
Read more at: http://evenmagazine.com/imperial-by-design/.
This year marks the fiftieth anniversary of the beginning of China’s Cultural Revolution (1966-1976), a decade-long period of political turmoil that included attacks on alleged class enemies, the toppling of Party officials high and low, and the reinstatement of political control via revolutionary committees supported by the military.
The Cultural Revolution was a period of violent passions and deep traumas. Violence was committed in the name of the noblest ideals or out of the darkest human motivations.
Last year, the twenty-fifth anniversary of the 1989 Tiananmen student movement and its brutal crackdown made major headlines. China-watchers, journalists, and academics commemorated June 4—as the event is called for short—with articles and books, and with lectures and roundtables.
May 17th in Hong Kong marked the opening of a two-week ‘Umbrella Festival,’ a pro-democracy sit-in protest that lasted from September to December 2014. The Umbrella Movement was one of the largest political demonstrations the city had ever seen.
In between memory and forgetting, there is commemoration. Twenty-five years ago this month, a protest in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square ended in tragedy. As historical event, the contours of the Tiananmen student movement have long since entered textbooks in the West.
Last Saturday, April 26, marked the official opening of Hong Kong’s June 4th Museum, the world’s first permanent exhibition on the 1989 Tiananmen student movement. On the eve of the twenty-fifth anniversary of the pro-democracy protests and Beijing’s brutal crackdown, the museum—sponsored by the Hong Kong Alliance in Support of Patriotic Democratic Movements—opened with another kind of protest on its doorstep.
As the 120th anniversary of his birth approaches this month, Mao Zedong has been reinvented. Shaoshan, the village in Hunan Province where the Chinese leader grew up, has spent over 1.9 billion yuan (about $312 million) to restore his former residence and a nearby memorial plaza, and is planning festivities such as a mass singing of the Cultural Revolution anthem, “The East is Red.”
At the base of the Oriental Pearl Tower is an exhibition of Shanghai history. The Shanghai History Exhibition Hall (Shanghai chengshi lishi fazhan chenlieguan), created in consultation with the Shanghai History Museum, recreates dioramas of everyday life in the Republican era (1912-1949).
Read more at: http://www.thechinabeat.org/?author=1&paged=17.