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何以中国|《经济学人》:复兴传统文化,创造中国历史

2017-08-22 从余启 我与我们的世界 我与我们的世界

欢迎打开“我与我们的世界”,从此,让我们一起“纵览世界之风云变幻、洞察社会之脉搏律动、感受个体之生活命运、挖掘自然之点滴奥妙”。

我与我们的世界,既是一个“奋斗”的世界,也是一个“思考”的世界。奋而不思则罔,思而不奋则殆。这个世界,你大,它就大;你小,它就小。

欢迎通过上方公众号名称打开公众号“查看历史信息”来挖掘往期文章,因为,每期都能让你“走近”不一样的世界、带给你不一样的精彩


本期导读:过去几千年的历史进程中,“中国”的地理范围和文化空间一直变动不居,当然各个历史阶段中其所具有的含义,自然也就会出现相应的变化。不过,“何以中国”这个问题,却是亘古未变,一直是人们所探讨的热点话题,也是人们孜孜不倦所追寻的意义。

 


Reviving traditional culture

复兴传统文化

Making history

创造历史

The Communist Party is trying to redefine what it means to be Chinese.

何以中国?


CHILDREN sit with straight backs chanting in loud voices from the Dizi Gui, a classic Chinese text about obedience. At the end of class they bow low to an image of Confucius, hands clasped as if in prayer. A statue of the ancient sage watches over the playground, too: “Study the Dizi Gui, be a good Chinese,” reads a red banner. At the Zhengde summer camp in Jinan, in the eastern province of Shandong, children as young as five spend their day reciting verses, learning tai chi and watching cartoons with moral messages. Phones are banned “to prevent contamination of the mind”, says Yi Shugui, the headmaster, a former management consultant. At similar summer schools across China children learn calligraphy, traditional Chinese crafts and how to play ancient instruments. China is undergoing a cultural renaissance, much of it government-sponsored.

一群孩子齐整排开,坐姿挺直,高声吟唱中国典籍《弟子规》,结束时双手合十,向孔子画像行深鞠躬之礼,像是在进行宗教祈祷。操场上,古代圣贤孔子的一尊雕塑,赫然矗立,旁边挂有红色条幅,上面写着:“学好弟子规,做好中国人”。中国东部省份山东省济南市的正德夏令营里,孩子们整天不是吟诵经典古籍,就是学传统太极,或观看道德宣讲动画片,有些孩子仅有五岁。据曾做过管理顾问的易淑贵负责人介绍,夏令营里也不允许使用电话“以防污染心神”。类似的夏令营活动,遍布中国大江南北,孩子们学书法,学传统手工艺,学演奏古典乐器。中国正在进行传统文化的复兴,其中,政府扮演的角色,很是关键。

 

For most of its history the Communist Party wanted to smash China’s past, not celebrate it. During the Cultural Revolution in the 1960s and 1970s it sought to overturn the “four olds”: old customs, old culture, old habits and old ideas. Temples, mansions and tombstones were ravaged, along with any artefacts or people associated with the bourgeois way of life. Small wonder that Communist ideology lost its appeal. The blistering pace of change in recent decades has kindled an anxiety that China is suffering from moral decay and a concomitant yearning for a revival of ancient values.The government is harnessing those feelings, using ancient rites and customs to spread favoured values.

中国近现代史的某些时期,中国以往的传统文化并没受到捧扬,而是受到了摧残。1960至1970年代“破四旧”期间,破除旧思想、旧文化、旧风俗、旧习惯一时甚嚣尘上。庙宇、道观、古墓、碑文,都遭到了摧残,也包括与资产阶级生活方式有关联的一切物品及人士,而主流意识形态遭到人们唾弃,也就不足为奇了。近几十年,中国经历了天翻地覆的变化,物质生活得到了极大提升,但与此同时社会却存在隐忧,道德滑坡不止,由此也产生对传统道德价值进行复兴的呼声。当局也注意到了这样的社会情绪,正在努力从传统礼仪和习俗中挖掘社会所需的价值理念。

 

Since coming to power in 2012 Xi Jinping, the president, has intensified efforts to build what he refers to as “cultural confidence”. In an extraordinary denial of its legacy, the Communist Party has taken to presenting itself as “the faithful heir” of traditional Chinese culture. “Our civilisation has developed in an unbroken line from ancient to modern times,” Mr Xi declared in 2012. In January the government sought to codify its attempts to “preserve” traditional culture by outlining a vast array of policies that local and national officials should advance.

自2012年新的党中央成立以来,就开始加大力度建立“文化自信”。尽管曾伤害过中国传统文化,但现在当局已努力把自己塑造成中国传统文化的“忠实传承者”。2012年,中国当局表示,“我们的中华文明,从古至今,从未间断。”今年1月,为了“保护”传统文化,中国政府曾制定系列相关政策措施并向全国各地推广落实。

 

Individual elements of the policy to promote “the integration of leisure life and traditional cultural development” sound rather benign. Taken together, however, they constitute an attempt to infuse daily life with a sanitised and government-sanctioned version of Chinese culture. The intention, as in so much that Mr Xi does, is to secure the enduring power of the Communist Party.

系列政策中满是诸如促进“娱乐生活和传统文化发展相结合”的条文,这给人的感觉很是不错。不过,若把两个方面真的结合在一起的话,就不难发现,人们的日常生活中,将会充斥从传统文化中挖掘出来的相关价值观念。而这样做的目的,不外呼是促进社会和谐、政治稳定。

 

The agenda touches every aspect of life.The white paper calls for an emphasis on “our festivals”, so local and national holidays are being celebrated with new vigour. Some people are proposing that China should pick its own Mother’s Day, rather than copy the American date(China already has a native version of Valentine’s Day). State media are boosting the use of Chinese medicine when people fall ill, wearing Han robes when they get married, and keeping fit by practising tai chi and other ancient sports (a recent viral video lauds “Kung Fu Granny”, a 94-year-old who reckons she owes her longevity partly to such activities). The party is trying to bend popular culture to its agenda, too. On August 5th it announced plans to replace prime-time entertainment and reality TV shows that “hype” pop stars with programmes of higher “moral” content. Examples include a much-plugged quiz show about classical poetry and another in which children compete to write complicated Chinese characters.

复兴传统文化的努力,涉及人们生活的方方面面。官方发布的白皮书呼吁,重视“我们的传统节日”,这样,地方性和全国性节日的庆祝力度,都获得了空前提升。有些人还提出,中国应该制定中国自己的母亲节,而不总要拷贝美国的节日(中国已经有了自己本土的情人节)。官媒也呼吁,人们生病时要用中医药,结婚时要穿汉服,练习太极及其他传统运动保持身体健康(近期一位94岁高龄自称自己长寿秘诀部分就在于练习传统运动的“功夫奶奶”的视频在网上获得疯传)。此外,当局还出台了其他能给人们日常生活带来特定影响的相关政策。8月5日,当局宣布,黄金时段被明星霸占娱乐和真人秀节目,应改成“道德水准”更高的节目。其中的几个案例就包括一个诗词大赛秀以及一个汉字听写大赛秀。

 

The great call

伟大号召

Every part of society is being pressed into the effort. Zhengde is emblematic of a wider plan to influence Chinese youth, what the People’s Daily refers to as a “soul-casting project”, by introducing new school textbooks and degree programmes relating to ancient culture. Employers are encouraged to take their staff on study trips and provide classes on culture. Even the People’s Liberation Army has been told to seek courage from a lion-hearted hero of ancient China. So, either by directive or a desire to please officialdom, every art form is being given a Chinese twist: “King of Glory”, a popular game for mobile phones, features a famous eighth-century poet, Li Bai, albeit as an assassin, not a calling there is any evidence he pursued. A well-known Peking opera has been reinvented in jazz form to appeal to new audiences.

 

There is an economic logic to such policies, since they protect some Chinese firms from foreign competition and promote new sources of consumption. Last year Mr Xi urged a group of writers and artists to “draw energy from the treasure vault of Chinese culture”. Publishers have been asked to limit imports of foreign children’s books, thereby making way for home-grown comics and picture books that promote “Chinese values”.

 

In an effort to cut poverty and create new rural jobs, all manner of crafts have been revived or invented, including creating sculptures from peach stones and yams, weaving bamboo and, in one place, making miniature souvenir coffins. In April the government expressed the intention to develop cultural industries into a “pillar” of the economy. China’s ancient heritage stands at the centre of its sales pitch to the world, too: becoming “a socialist cultural superpower” is now an official national goal.

 

By presenting himself as the defender of traditional values, Mr Xi hopes to harness the conservative forces in society. He also seeks to divert attention from the party’s own culpability in creating the supposed spiritual vacuum. Traditional values bolster the Communist Party in other ways, too. Promoting the country’s cultural heritage is a safer source of patriotism than anti-Japanese feeling, which the party had been stoking for many years and which backfired in 2012 when demonstrations against Japan turned violent.

 

The Communist Party has cherry-picked the version of the past that suits it—what it refers to as a “correct” reflection of the ancient values prizing hierarchy, obedience and order. Preaching to a class of 12-18-year-olds at Zhengde, Mr Yi sums up Confucius’s teachings:“Listen to your parents at home, to your teachers at school, to your boss at work and to the state and government in the country—then you will have happiness.” That epitomises Mr Xi’s vision of a “harmonious society” nicely as well.

 

Inconvenient elements of China’s ancient culture have been left safely behind. Endorsing traditional values does not include a tolerance for religion, for example, which Mr Xi sees as a potential rival for citizens’ loyalty. While he preaches that ancient values are the “soul of the nation”, he has also overseen harsh moves against Tibetan Buddhists and Chinese Muslims. Monasteries throughout China have, in effect, been turned into tourist attractions. Many Buddhist temples charge entry fees and few host regular religious services or provide prayer books. Within weeks of the release of the white paper on preserving traditional culture came another edict forbidding even retired officials in Beijing from engaging in any religious activities. The Communist Party has clearly heeded one lesson from its own history: social movements, be they revolutionary, religious or democratic, may prove hard to contain. Better to control them itself.

 

 《弟子规》


《弟子规》,原名《训蒙文》,是一本清朝出现的文学作品,内容以儒家道德为主,以韵文写成。一般认为作者是大清国康熙年间的秀才李毓秀,后经贾存仁修订改编,改称《弟子规》。

 

其内容取自《论语·学而篇》中的第六条:“弟子入则孝,出则弟,谨而信,泛爱众,而亲仁,行有余力,则以学文。”核心思想是孝、悌、仁、爱。《弟子规》是以三字一句,两句一韵的文体方式编纂而成。

 

然后再以《总叙》、《入则孝》、《出则弟》、《谨》、《信》、《汎爱众》、《亲仁》和《余力学文》等部分来加以演述。列举为人子弟在家、外出、待人接物、求学等应有的礼仪和规范,特别讲求家庭教育和生活教育。



往期精彩:


中国式神话|《儒家神话》:神话,在传说中,在古籍里,也在你我身边

中国故事|《世纪之变》:百年光影,忽闪而过,尽在不言

中国往事|《CNN》:南京长江大桥的故事,波澜又壮阔

中国模式|《圣谕广训》:一切“真”历史,都是当代史

中国改革进程|《经济学人》:进一步退两步VS退一步进两步

中国2030|《经济学人智库》:中产崛起,消费升级,你将在哪一级?

西方社会一瞥|《BBC》:活在“水深火热”中的西方人民

国际话语权|《唐奖》:中华文化圈的“诺贝尔奖”落座台湾

民族主义|《关注印度》:印度的民族主义,源远且流长

诗图一家|《在人间》:代际更替,循环往复,永无止境


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