China's Cultural Revolution, 1966-1969: Not a Dinner Party

By Michael Schoenhals | Go to book overview

23
Rebels in Shanghai

Far Eastern Economic Review Correspondent

Source: Far Eastern Economic Review, 8 September 1966, pp. 443-45.

The second half of July and the first three weeks of August were extremely hot in Shanghai--but there were no school holidays this summer for those over sixteen. The students and the teachers stayed on, either living in or attending school every day in order to acquire the thinking of Mao Zedong and to conduct the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution.

The initial stage of the revolution took place indoors: in colleges and schools, in industrial and commercial enterprises, and in various organizations. Students, workers, and other employees concentrated on criticizing and denouncing all those thought to be guilty of anti-Party leanings or unstable in their political thinking. Only after this stage were the student activities transferred outdoors to sweep over the whole city. Day after day, ever since 10 August, the sounds of drums, gongs, slogans, and songs have filled the air as columns of matchers have marched down the streets in unending processions, all heading toward the local headquarters of the Chinese Communist Party.

The first demonstration by students, workers and groups of residents was to greet the promulgation of the Sixteen-Point Resolution of the Central Committee on the Cultural Revolution.1 The second was to greet the Communique of the Committee's Eleventh Plenary Session.2 Then, third, people filled the streets to implement the decisions and to eradicate from the city all remnants of the bourgeois way of life, all traces of the former reactionary regimes, all vestiges of imperialism, feudalism, colonialism, and other objectionable isms.

Between 10 and 21 August the revolution was marked mainly by orderly processions, each group carrying the national flag, numerous portraits of Mao Zedong, red banners and paper flags with slogans, and

____________________
1
Document 4.
2
An English translation is in Peking Review, No. 34, 1966.

-141-

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