For et stykke tid siden skrev jeg om de nye propagandaplakater, der handler om Den Kinesiske Drøm. Den slags kampagner er der lang tradition for i Kina, men de handler normalt om kommunistiske værdier.
Denne gang bryder de med traditionen og handler om Kinas fortid og Konfucius, om gamle og ægte kinesiske værdier, i hvert fald som Xi Jinping og partiet definerer dem. For de marxistiske dyder passer ikke længere til et moderne Kina, og derfor taler partiet nu til følelserne.
Kineserne er dog vant til den slags kampagner og plakater, så spørgsmålet er, om der overhovedet er nogen, som lægger mærke til dem.
Ian Johnson har en god artikel på New York Review of Books, hvor der også er gode eksempler og oversættelser af de mange slogans.
The art is courtesy of well known folk art institutions, such as the Yangliuqing woodblock printing workshops outside of Tianjin, Henan’s Wuyang peasant paintings, and the paintings of the late Shanghai artist Feng Zikai—a sign of the Party’s ability to mobilize pretty much any social organization it wants, and to appropriate symbols that it once condemned. Almost all the art used in the posters, with its depictions of traditional dress and poses, used to be derided by the Party as belonging to China’s backward, pre-Communist past; now, these aesthetic traditions are a bulwark used to legitimize the Party as a guardian and creator of the country’s hopes and aspirations.
One of the chief promoters of the campaign has been a pro-government blogger named Xie Shaoqing, who goes by the nom de plume of Yi Qing. His writings—mostly homilies and Party slogans—grace many of the posters, and in his blog he describes how the posters went up this summer in Tiananmen Square . Based on his blog, Yi Qing would be categorized in China as a neo-leftist: there are entries attacking the investigative newspaper Southern Weekend, a paean to Chairman Mao on his birthday, as well as a guilt-ridden admission that he wrote the introduction to a book penned by the imprisoned police chief of Chongqing, Wang Lijun, whose former boss was the disgraced former Politburo member Bo Xilai. (Wang’s flight to the US embassy precipitated the leadership crisis last year that resulted in Bo’s conviction for corruption and abuse of power; Bo is now appealing a life sentence.)