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CPC stresses "history wealth," calls for more education of Party history

07-22-2010 08:23 BJT

BEIJING, July 21 (Xinhua) -- The Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee held its first-ever, high-level national conference on the work concerning Party history on Wednesday, prior to the 90th anniversary of its founding in July 2011.

Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping (L) speaks as He Guoqiang, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, listens during the national work conference on the history of the CPC, at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, capital of China, July 21, 2010.(Xinhua/Pang Xinglei)
Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping (L) speaks as He Guoqiang, a member of the Standing 
Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, 
listens during the national work conference on the history of the CPC, at the Great Hall of 
the People in Beijing, capital of China, July 21, 2010.(Xinhua/Pang Xinglei)
Vice President Xi Jinping called for more research and education about the history of the CPC, especially among young people.

Xi, a Standing Committee member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee, made the remarks during a keynote speech delivered at the conference.

He said the history of the 89-year-old Party is a "lively and vivid textbook," which should be well-studied, and research results should be used to "educate Party members, officials and the masses, especially the youth."

He said Party history should be included in schools' curriculums and publicized via the Internet.

Further, researchers should study the Party's history "in a practical and realistic manner," Xi said, adding that the Party's glory, experiences, traditions and fine work style should be publicized.

He added that the CPC strongly opposes any tendency that "distorts or smears the Party's history."

Xi said the Party, having experienced the tests of revolution, development and reform, "successfully united and led the Chinese people to achieve miracles under an extremely complicated circumstance."

"Over the past 89 years, the CPC contributed greatly to the nation's independence, unification and the people's well-being," he said.

President Hu Jintao, also general secretary of the CPC Central Committee, met with the delegates, mainly Party historians, ahead of the conference. The country has more than 17,000 Party history researchers working in more than 2,800 research institutes nationwide.


Xie Chuntao, vice director of the Party history department at the Party School of the CPC Central Committee, said the CPC boasts a tradition of summing up the experience of the Party's development. It summarizes the history every five years when the CPC plenary meeting is held.

Xie said how the history is understood has a bearing on the way of perceiving the future.

Efforts should be made to "deepen the understanding of the laws for the development of the ruling party, socialist progress and the course of human society," and elevate these experience to a theoretical level, he said.

"There are both experiences and lessons to learn," Xie said.


Researchers say the environment of studying Party history has become more relaxed.

Xie said more confidential documents that had passed time limits for secrecy, began to become available to the public. They often contained valuable material for historical studies.

For past state leaders who committed mistakes, their contributions and positive sides have been exposed more in official documents, or even in films and TV plays.

"Officials are often told in Party schools' classes the lessons learned in history so that they will not replicate these faults," he said.

For the large volume of information about the anecdotes of CPC history on-line or in other social media, Li Zhongjie, deputy director of the CPC Central Committee's Party History Research Office (PHRO), said, "Some are true, some are not, and there are even some intentional slanders aimed at smearing the Party and subverting the country and its socialist system."

Li said efforts should be made to clarify falsehoods, dispel rumors and misrepresentations, and show respect to the history.

He said, "There are many figures and events in the Party's history. Different people will recollect and interpret them from various angles, and they are also easily affected by various factors."

"Every one has bias when they recall the past, so recollections are different. We must stop fabricated stories from entering the written history of the Party, some of which are made up for the purpose of misleading people," he said.


In a column called "Eternal Monument," the CPC's history was told in short tales to help people, especially the young, to learn it.

The column was seen in major state media, including the flagship newspaper People's Daily, the Xinhua News Agency and the national broadcasters China National Radio and China Central Television, from 2005 to 2007. It was the culmination of cooperation between the PHRO and these media outlets.

Besides researching the Party history, the PHRO is also obligated to preserve historical sites concerning events in the Party's history. It also designs routes for people to learn history through sightseeing tours. Such "red (revolutionary) tourism" has become very popular in recent years.

The office has also compiled more than 1,000 history books over the last five years and collaborated with film producers to shoot 166 films about Party history. Li said theses books and films are narrated in a lively way, free from "mechanical teaching."

Founded in 1980, with Hu Qiaomu as its first director, the office received its first task of composing a credible history of the turbulent Cultural Revolution (1966-1976). How to treat this history was a crucial question faced by the CPC at that time. The Party had to make an impartial judgment and draw lessons from it.

The PHRO is now working on increasing its openness. On June 30, its spokesman, Zhang Shujun, together with spokespersons for the CPC's ten other departments, made an unprecedented group debut in front of both domestic and overseas media, one day ahead of the 89th anniversary of the founding of the CPC, on July 1, unveiling the mask of the mystery-shrouded historian' s organization.

The CPC, founded on July 1, 1921, is the world's largest political party. It had 78 million members as of last year.

Editor:Jin Lin |Source: Xinhua

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