The 13th annual academic conference on national history held in Beijing
The 13th annual academic conference on national history was held in Beijing on the 24th and 25th of September. With the theme of “Socialism with Chinese Characteristics and Mao Zedong, its Founder and Explorer”, the conference was co-sponsored by the Institute of Contemporary China Studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS) and the Association of National History of the People’s Republic of China（ANHPRC）. The opening ceremony was attended by Chen Kuiyuan, former vice-chairman of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), former president of CASS and president of the ANHPRC.
Li Jie, vice-president of CASS, director of the Institute of Contemporary China Studies and vice-president of the ANHPRC, delivered the opening address. Zhang Quanjing, former head of the Organization Department of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and counselor of the ANHPRC, also attended the opening ceremony and delivered a speech.
In his address, Li Jie expounded Mao Zedong’s historical status mainly from the points of view of his historical contributions to the development of Marxism, scientific socialism, the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation, Chinese civilization and world civilization.
Li Jie pointed out that the basic tenet of the spirit of the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) is to persist in and develop socialism with Chinese characteristics, adding that Socialism with Chinese characteristics represents the highest unification of the theoretical logic of scientific socialism and the historical logic of Chinese development and progress. He stressed that Socialism with Chinese characteristics was born with the Chinese people’s constant struggle and pursuit of national independence and liberation in modern times, and it takes as its starting point and basis the founding of the People’s Republic of China, the success of the socialist revolution and the establishment of the essential system of socialism, and the arduous search for a path of socialist construction suited to China’s conditions. It is the CPC guided by Mao Zedong that has led Chinese people of all ethnic groups to win one victory after another through bloodshed, sacrifice and arduous struggle, added Li. He continued by saying that forgetting history means betrayal, and we should give full play to Party history and national history in upholding and developing socialism with Chinese characteristics as well as pushing forward the various causes of the Party and the state, ensuring that over time the cadres and the masses never forget Mao Zedong’s historical status and his great contributions.
Zhang Quanjing reminded those present that in his speech at the meeting on national dissemination and ideological work, President Xi Jinping pointed out recently that leading cadres, especially senior ones, should systematically learn and master the fundamental theories of Marxism. President Xi’s remarks were of far-reaching significance for leading cadres, added Zhang.
The opening ceremony was hosted by Zhang Xingxing，the deputy director of the Institute of Contemporary China Studies and secretary-general of the ANHPRC. Over 90 experts and scholars from all over the country attended the meeting. In the 72 papers selected for the meeting, the theme of “Socialism with Chinese Characteristics and Mao Zedong, its Founder and Explorer” was further researched and summarized from the perspectives of politics, economics, culture, society, national security, diplomacy and Party construction.
The Chinese version of this article appeared in Chinese Social Sciences Today, No. 506, September 27, 2013.
Translated by Yu Hui
Revised by Gabriele Corsetti