Mao Zedong was the representative figure in the Sinicisation of Marxism. At the beginning of the May 4th Movement, he advocated promoting the transformation of society by proceeding from the actualities of China and inheriting critically the legacy of Chinese and Western cultures. After he became a Marxist, he firmly resisted the tendency towards divination of the directives of the Communist International, and the Soviet experience of revolution, and tried hard to integrate the universal principles of Marxism with Chinese culture and Chinese revolutionary practice, thus opening up the way to the revolution in 1949. However, after the founding of the New China he patterned the economic construction on the Soviet model, and stressed criticism of the culture of the bourgeois, but dropped his guard against the pernicious influences of feudal society; so the historical sediment of the feudal culture became thicker and thicker under cover of Marxism, and finally there occurred the historical tragedy of the “Great Leap Forward” and the “Great Cultural Revolution”. The Third Plenary Session of the Eleventh Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party repudiated the theoretical basis of the “Great Cultural Revolution” and brought in a new phase of political restructuring and cultural openness. The author holds that the evolution of Mao Zedong′s concept of Chinese and Western cultures should be studied and summarised, so that lessons may be drawn from it for the building of a socialist spiritual civilisation.
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