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

By Michael Schoenhals | Go to book overview

extraordinarily sharp, and there will always be the danger of an error the breadth of a single hair leading you a thousand miles astray. Chairman Mao has come up along this path, but if his successor cannot continue, the Chinese Party runs the risk of becoming a fascist party. I'll say it once more, the merciless dialectic [of history] may request that you "step aside."

Why am I saying this in public? In order to encourage the popular masses to make greater use of the "great freedom" you mention--of criticizing and supervising the work of the leadership and the leaders of the Party and the state at all levels.

Errors have to be criticized and that which fails to accord with Mao Zedong Thought must be pointed out. Or may one not criticize or disagree with you? (In their speeches, some leaders appear to be saying that one may not criticize or disagree with you. I don't think you would agree with those who act as if that is the case.)

Words of utter devotion, requesting only that you give them some thought. Should I have distorted the truth, please criticize and correct me.

Great Proletarian Cultural Revolutionary greetings!

Beijing Agricultural University Middle School student Yilin Dixi 15 November 1966


30
It's OK to Touch Your Soul

"The File"

Source: This satirical essay ( "Chuji ni de linghun mei cuo") first appeared in the Red Guard tabloid Shoudu hongweibing (Capital Red Guard) on 30 November 1966. Our translation is based on the text in Wei Mao zhuxi er zhan: Sansi Shoudu hongweibing wenxuan (Fighting for Chairman Mao: Selections from the Third Headquarters' Capital Red Guard) ( Beijing, 1967), pp. 133-35. The pseudonymous Red Guard author is most likely a student or teacher at the Beijing Geological Institute.

Whether you really approve of the socialist revolution, or just pretend to, or even oppose the socialist revolution, will reveal itself in how you

-162-

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