Beijing Spring, 1989: Confrontation and Conflict: the Basic Documents

By Michel Oksenberg; Lawrence R. Sullivan et al. | Go to book overview

In the past, writers were banned from carrying out explorations on these questions. To this day our academic contention has yet to succeed in breaking through these forbidden zones. For instance the ban on carrying out explorations on the Asian mode of production, agricultural socialism, alienation under socialism, and some other questions has not yet been lifted. We need answers, particularly specific answers, to these questions now. The saying that "there are no forbidden zones in academic contention" seems unable to nullify all the forbidden zones that exist in our academic and theoretical studies.

Today, I have come to this symposium because I want to see unity. The speech I am making is also aimed at achieving unity. The mainstream of the broad masses of our theoretical workers is unity. In the past, some theoretical circle leaders proclaimed themselves Marxist, discriminated against those comrades who held views that were not commensurate with theirs, raised academic and theoretical differences to the higher plane of politics, divided theoreticians and anti-Marxists, artificially split the theoretical circles, and frequently delivered reports similar to those on the "history of the struggle between the two lines," which they themselves delivered zealously during the Cultural Revolution. It is such erroneous practice, not the academic and theoretical differences that presently exist in our theoretical circles, that has impaired stability and unity. Therefore, only by putting an end to such erroneous practice will our theoretical circles become more united than before and will we be able to bring about a real spring in our theoretical circles.


15
China Needs Democracy

FANG LIZHI

Source: Libération ( Paris) ( January 17, 1989): 5; FBIS, January 27, pp. 14-16.

In China, 1989 is the year of the snake. Though it is not certain that this snake will present any great temptations, the following is at least to be expected: The year will prompt the Chinese to examine their past more thoroughly and to take a more penetrating look at the present. The year will mark both the seventieth anniversary of the May 1919 Movement (an intellectual and political movement of prime importance against a background of nationalism and Western cultural influence) and the 40th anniversary of the founding of socialist China. These two

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