The Cultural Revolution in Chongqing

Go here and open the pdf file. A beautiful portrait of the Cultural Revolution by one of my very favorite bloggers Xujun Eberlein, whose older sister drowned in 1968 as she paid tribute to Chairman Mao’s famous swim up the Yangtze. Just beautiful. Aging members of different factions of the Red Guard share memories, and we almost understand how these people surrendered their critical faculties and followed Mao on the road to catastrophe. Almost. They were “well meaning” and idealistic. And they ruined countless lives along the way, often their own as well.

I know, in the Twitter age it seems like a burden to open a pdf file and read an actual essay, but this is more than worth it. Mesmerizing.

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Richard Burger is the author of Behind the Red Door: Sex in China, an exploration of China's sexual revolution and its clash with traditional Chinese values.

The Discussion: 4 Comments

It’s a wonderful essay that illustrates the complexities of the CR that tend to get left out in most mainstream analyses. Highly recommended.

July 8, 2012 @ 3:47 pm | Comment

This is sorta kinda related to the topic
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-18784990

July 11, 2012 @ 9:12 am | Comment

Great link, thanks Mike. Everyone should take a look.

July 11, 2012 @ 1:45 pm | Comment

It’s important not to forget how beneficial the Cultural Revolution is for the CCP today. Together with the famines of the Great Leap Forward, it serves as the benchmark against which today’s stability and prosperity are compared. It’s almost as if the CCP came to power only in 1978, not three decades earlier. I’ve heard otherwise liberal-minded Chinese say that they are afraid of chaos if the CCP lets lose its reins.

July 31, 2012 @ 5:18 am | Comment

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