Great Cultural Revolution in Progress

Workers’ Mao Tse-tung’s Thought
Propaganda Teams in Colleges and Schools

[This article is reprinted from Peking Review, Vol. 11, #43, Oct. 25, 1968, pp. 13-16.]

      Guided by Chairman Mao’s great strategic plan, a Mao Tse-tung’s thought propaganda team of workers, with industrial workers as the main body and with the participation of People’s Liberation Army men, first entered Peking’s Tsinghua University on July 27 this year. Since then, in various places, mighty armies of industrial workers have either entered or are about to enter the universities and colleges, middle and primary schools, the departments of the superstructure such as literature and art, journalism and publishing, and all the units where struggle-criticism-transformation has not been carried out well.

      Thus, China’s working class has heroically stepped on to the political stage of struggle-criticism-transformation in all parts of the superstructure. This is a great event of the 1960s and a great creative undertaking in the history of proletarian revolution. This is an important development of Marxism-Leninism by Chairman Mao. It marks the beginning of a great new era in which China’s proletariat will transform, according to its own outlook, the colleges and schools and all the spheres and departments of the superstructure that do not conform with the socialist economic base and will exercise all-round dictatorship over the bourgeoisie. It will certainly exert a tremendous influence in the political, economic and cultural fields of China and bring about enormous changes there.

      Though only a short period of time has elapsed, this influence and these changes have already begun to manifest themselves clearly. —Ed.

Using Mao Tse-tung’s Thought to Educate
the Masses of Teachers and Students

      WITH boundless proletarian feeling for Chairman Mao, the workers’ propaganda team assigned to Tsinghua University perseveres in disseminating Chairman Mao’s latest series of instructions, relays as quickly as possible every battle order from the proletarian headquarters, and uses Mao Tse-tung’s thought to re-educate the masses of young Red Guard fighters and revolutionary teachers and students. The team used broadcasts, big-character posters, forums and chats to propagate Mao Tse-tung’s thought. It has formed around 100 groups to go among the teachers and students in all the classes and dormitories, build close contacts with them, and do deep-going propaganda and educational work on an extensive scale. These efforts are well received by the teachers and students. Many of them take the initiative in going to the workers to discuss problems and tell them about the situation in the university, thereby relying on the leadership of the working class.

      The two big conflicting organizations in the university have now formed a revolutionary great alliance. After bringing about this great alliance, the workers’ propaganda team, following Chairman Mao’s teaching on running study classes, immediately organized the members of the two organizations to run joint Mao Tse-tung’s thought study classes everywhere. Such classes can now be found in every one of Tsinghua’s classes and units. Here the participants fight self-interest and repudiate revisionism, denounce the counter-revolutionary revisionist line on education pushed by China’s Khrushchov, repudiate the reactionary bourgeois theory of “many centres,” and expose the handful of class enemies who incited one section of the masses to fight against another and tried to sabotage the great proletarian cultural revolution. This has strengthened the proletarian political leadership of the working class in the university, mobilized the revolutionary enthusiasm of the masses of teachers and students, enhanced their unity and solved many problems. For example, in the Mao Tse-tung’s thought study class of a class of the Department of Automatic Control, some teachers at the start could not fully grasp the significance of Chairman Mao’s instructions on consolidating the revolutionary great alliance and “doing more self-criticism,” because they were still influenced by the “mountain-stronghold” mentality, individualism and sectarianism. Drawing on their personal experience, veteran workers of the Peking Transformer Works told this class how their plant split into two groups because of the influence of the bourgeois reactionary line, how they later formed a great alliance according to Chairman Mao’s instructions, how, in front of each other’s group, they criticized their bourgeois partisanship and finally got united against the common enemy. The teachers and students of the study class were deeply moved. Some immediately criticized themselves for not studying Chairman Mao’s instructions well and declared that they would follow the example of the workers and examine their own bourgeois partisanship. In this way, the revolutionary great alliance in this class was soon consolidated.

Members of the workers’ Mao Tse-tung’s thought propaganda
team in Tsinghua University discuss Chairman Mao’s latest
instructions with revolutionary students and teachers.

      The propaganda team in the university has a profound understanding of the fact that the proletarian policies advanced by Chairman Mao are powerful weapons for mobilizing the positive factor of the masses of revolutionary teachers and students. Only by conscientiously implementing these policies can the majority of the latter be truly united and the masses of revolutionary intellectuals be led forward quickly to take the road of integrating themselves with the workers, peasants and soldiers. Since they entered the university, members of the propaganda team have given active support to the revolutionary proposals coming from the teachers and students. They eat, live, do manual labour and study together with the revolutionary teachers and students and give them ideological help. They have fully affirmed the positive role played by the university’s young Red Guard fighters in the great cultural revolution movement and the great contributions they made to the revolution. They have also given warm and patient help and education to individual young Red Guard fighters who made certain mistakes. The young revolutionary fighters have thus received a living education in class struggle and their class feeling of profound love for Chairman Mao has been further stimulated. They have also enhanced their consciousness in class struggle and in the struggle between the two lines.

      The propaganda team’s use of Mao Tse-tung’s thought to carry out proletarian re-education of the masses of teachers and students has been a tremendous inspiration to them. In the past two months and more, big changes have taken place in Tsinghua University. The revolutionary teachers and students are determined to creatively study and apply Chairman Mao’s works, and under the leadership of the working class firmly take the road of integrating themselves with the workers, peasants and soldiers, fulfil the tasks of struggle-criticism-transformation conscientiously in their university and carry through to the end the proletarian revolution in education.

Firmly Grasping Class Education

      THE Mao Tse-tung’s thought propaganda team of workers assigned to Hangchow University in Chekiang Province makes class education a main course in re-educating intellectuals. Veteran workers in the team hold meetings with the revolutionary students and teachers in which they recount their own experience of suffering in the old society and speak of their happiness since liberation. In this way they help to heighten the latter’s level of class consciousness and their consciousness in the struggle between the two lines. This has given a powerful impetus to the educational revolution in the university.

      In early September, the propaganda team discovered a large, dusty bundle in a garbage can. In it were clothes, socks, work-gloves and other items of clothing, 27 pieces in all. Looking into the matter they found that it had been thrown there by Little Lo, a Foreign Languages Department student from a family of working people, who had just graduated.

      This bundle became the object of serious discussion among the workers. Why was it that Little Lo thought nothing of wearing these clothes when she entered the university, but threw them away now she was leaving? Deeply pained, they said: “She has thrown away not just clothes, but the fine qualities of the labouring people!” “It is China’s Khrushchov’s revisionist educational line that has poisoned young people like her and made her forget the past! We of the working class must lead them back to the broad revolutionary road pointed out by Chairman Mao!”

      The propaganda team decided to use this as a typical example through which to give class education to the whole school. They displayed this bundle of clothes at an exhibition which was a wrathful indictment of the heinous crimes caused by the revisionist educational line pushed by China’s Khrushchov. The whole university went to see the exhibition.

      Then the propaganda team called a number of meetings to “recall past bitterness,” in which, in order to give class education to the students and teachers of the whole university, 21 veteran workers went up to the platform to tell of their past sufferings and their present happiness.

      Ting Huan-chang, an old worker with dozens of years of working life behind him, made a special journey home to bring back to the university the rags full of patches which for many long years in the old society had been his only clothing. He also hunted up some wild vegetables of the kind he used to eat, and with tears in his eyes denounced the old society’s persecution of the labouring people. With great emotion, he then told everyone present how Chairman Mao had saved him from this pit of misery and given him a happy life. Listening to him, the young Red Guard fighters, revolutionary students and teachers were moved to tears. Many Red Guards from worker or poor or lower-middle peasant families also went up to the platform to denounce China’s Khrushchov for his revisionist educational line and its poisonous effects on them. They also examined themselves for the changes in their ideology after entering university, how they had gradually forgotten the labouring people, and how they had not lived up to the expectations of the workers and the poor and lower-middle peasants. The urgent desire of the young revolutionary fighters to remould their world outlook was thus heightened even more and they feel deeply that the working class is the best teacher sent them by Chairman Mao.

      By recalling the bitter life of the past and contrasting it with the happiness of the new society and making self-examinations of their class stand, the masses of students and teachers came to hate the old society and love the new society even more, and to have a greater hatred for China’s Khrushchov and his revisionist educational line and a greater love for our great leader Chairman Mao and his proletarian educational line. They pledge never to forget the past sufferings of the labouring classes, to resolutely accept re-education by the workers, peasants and soldiers, and closely follow Chairman Mao in making revolution.

      The worker comrades also went three times to see Little Lo at her home. They brought her all her cast-away clothes washed clean and helped her to study and understand better Chairman Mao’s latest instructions on giving intellectuals re-education. Together they recalled past bitterness and spoke of the present happiness, and together they studied Chairman Mao’s teachings. All this was a profound education to Little Lo. She has now made up her mind to go and take part in manual work on a farm and be an ordinary labourer and thoroughly transform her old ideology.

      By energetically grasping class education, the workers’ propaganda team has powerfully promoted struggle-criticism-transformation in the university. The revolutionary students and teachers there are determined to carry the proletarian educational revolution through to the end under the leadership of the working class.

Learning From the Fine Qualities of the Working Class

      A VIGOROUS, revolutionary atmosphere prevails in the colleges, universities, middle and primary schools since the arrival there of Mao Tse-tung’s thought propaganda teams of workers. Young Red Guard fighters and revolutionary students and teachers are eagerly studying Chairman Mao’s works together with the workers, and together with them criticize and repudiate the revisionist educational line. Through this direct contact with the workers, they have learnt from the fine qualities of the proletariat and this has stimulated their revolutionary sentiments.

      After going into the Shanghai Institute of Finance and Economy, the propaganda team members of the Shanghai Bicycle Works took the advice of their old fellow workers: they led the students and teachers to do productive manual work in the bicycle plant. Each time they took a group of 200 students and teachers and worked with them for about a week each month. During this time they also took part in the plant’s struggle-criticism-transformation activities.

      The revolutionary students and teachers appreciate this as valuable “re-education.” In the plant, they have witnessed the workers’ boundless loyalty in following Chairman Mao’s great strategic plan closely, they have seen the workers’ boundless enthusiasm in production, and the great victories the latter have won by using Mao Tse-tung’s thought to manage the plant and thoroughly smash the revisionist line in running enterprises. They have also seen the workers’ thorough-going revolutionary spirit and inexhaustible wisdom. All this has given them a clearer understanding of Chairman Mao’s great teaching, “The working class must exercise leadership in everything.” So, with the workers leading struggle-criticism-transformation in their institute, the students and teachers are full of confidence in victory.

      They say: “The workers are really good teachers! We must carry the proletarian revolution in education through to the end under the leadership of the working class!”

      By the example of their own actions, the workers’ propaganda team members who went to the Chungshan Medical College in Kwangehow, south China, transformed the ideas of those students who looked down upon manual labour and the workers and peasants.

      Living in the college, team members attended to all the chores of daily life themselves. They cleaned their rooms and lavatories. They went to do manual work with the workers in the kitchen and the garage and with the clinic staff. They took the initiative in doing any work anywhere. In the college, they posted many Chairman Mao portraits and his quotations, and revolutionized the look of the campus. The college’s whole political atmosphere was swiftly changed.

      The revolutionary students and teachers were deeply moved. Some said: “We are medical students, yet we pay no attention to the work of hygiene. We should be ashamed to have the workers doing the cleaning for us.” Some students put up big-character posters examining their style of life of pampered youngsters described by the phrase: “When the clothes are made ready for me, I put them on; when the food is served, I open my mouth.” They expressed their determination to learn from the working class, to take part enthusiastically in manual labour in order to thoroughly transform their bourgeois ideas of looking down upon manual labour and the workers and peasants. Many students of the graduating classes became firmer in their determination to work in the countryside, to go among the poor and lower-middle peasants and thoroughly remould their bourgeois world outlook in order to serve the labouring people better.

      One student put it well: “We want to be successors to the revolutionary cause of the proletariat, that is, as Chairman Mao has pointed out, be workers with both socialist consciousness and culture. In this respect, the working class is our best teacher!”

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