image of the original vintage 1968 Chinese communist propaganda poster titled Diligently carry out struggle-criticism-transformation

Diligently carry out struggle-criticism-transformation

Regular price £350.00 Sale

Artist: unknown

Year: 1968

Publisher: Sichuan East Red Publishing House

Size (mm): 534x772

Condition: Excellent, creasing to margins, small tear to right hand margin

The text at top reads: Mao Zhuxi zui xin zhishi Jianli sanjiehe de geming weiyuanhui, dapipan, qingli jieji duiwu, zhengdang, jingjian jigou, gaige bu heli de guizhangzhidu, xiafang keshirenyuan, gongchangli de dou, pi, gai, dati jingli zheme jige jieduan 

(Chairman Mao's newest instructions: set up a three-in-one combination revolutionary committee, carry out mass criticisms, purify class ranks, consolidate the party organisation, simplify the administration, transform unreasonable rules and regulations, demote administrative personnel, carry out struggle-criticism-transformation in the factories; in general we should go through all these stages)

On 8 August 1966 a set of guidelines was adopted for the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution called the shiliutiao (sixteen points), essentially Mao's original blueprint for the Cultural Revolution. Following this, a joint editorial in the People's Daily and Red Flag magazine was issued on 1 January 1967 under the title 'Carry Out the Proletarian Cultural Revolution to the End', promoting the struggle-criticism-transformation movement. In practice people were expected to 'struggle' or fight against and overthrow those who were supposedly following the route of capitalism, particularly those in high office such as Liu Shaoqi and Deng Xiaoping. The 'criticism' focused on condemning the bourgeois ideology and exploiting classes, and bourgeois academic authorities; while the 'transformation' was in literature, education and art that did not conform to the socialist line. The movement also formed part of larger efforts to contain the excesses of the Red Guards' rampages and factional warfare, with leaders of rebel groups subjected to criticisms and struggle sessions with the aim of restoring obedience. 

The sanjiehe (three-in-one combination) referred to in the poster's text was the basic structure during the Cultural Revolution of all revolutionary committees, comprising the three essential groups for revolution: the masses, cadres and military. The directive was issued in the People's Daily on 10 March 1967, and was followed the next day by a call for all parts of the country to follow the three-in-one model in all sectors of the economy.

During the Cultural Revolution Mao Zedong regularly issued proclamations in newspaper articles and editorials, which all citizens were expected to read and commit to memory. At the time there was a popular saying on this subject: yi tian bu xue wenti duo, liang tian bu xue zou xiapo, san tian bu xue mei fa huo (don't read for one day you'll have big problems, don't read for two days you'll go downhill, don't read for three days you won't live any longer). People who weren't able to recite by heart Mao's latest writings would be reported and could expect trouble.