Mary Kate’s Page

September 1966: After getting home from school today, I watched the TV with my mother and father. Mao was on the news channel, talking about his Cultural Revolution. I’ve been listening to the news, seeing propaganda about how we should be hunting down those who are apposing the revolution, and reading all about the uprisings against the counter-revolutionaries. I have seen this poster at least 30 times since it was published http://chineseposters.net/gallery/e13-812.php. I like the idea of apposing authority, criticizing all their faults that they try to hide through the “power” they hold over you. To date, I myself haven’t opposed the authority figures in my life too much, having not had school since I’ve began to learn about it. Once I begin my 7th grade year in a few weeks, though, I am fully prepared to argue with my teachers.

 

September 1969: Going into my 10th grade year, in a new building than before, I am totally engulfed in the Cultural Revolution. I have successfully apposed every single one of my teachers in the past 3 years. I have decided that I want to join the Red Guards, after having supported their ideas since they really came about. I am already supporting their crest on my arm in school and at home, but I want to become a true part of them. The Revolution is sort of getting out of hand, though. Much of what the Red Guards are doing in apposing their superiors are becoming more hectic. Some are even being sent away or killed by Mao because they are not criticizing the people he wanted them to, but the authority members in their lives. I still am up for officially joining the Red Guard, though. Being an avid supporter, I think the protection would help me and being in a real group would aid me in my attempts to attack counter-revolutionaries and authority.

 

September 1976: Joining the Red Guard was a bad idea. Not because I didn’t support their ideas or because I did not want to become ever further involved in overthrowing those superior to me, no I enjoyed that. However, the propaganda turned out to be somewhat deceitful. Instead of Mao keeping his word in wanting us to criticize authority. Most propaganda has ceased in support of the Red Guard and the Culture Revolution, as seen here http://chineseposters.net/gallery/theme-10.php. Now I’m being sent to the countryside for “reeducation”. I’m not sure what that means, but from what I have heard it is not a good, fun reeducation. I have a friend from the Red Guard that was sent out to the country before I was, and she was able to slip a letting in the mail to me. She wrote that even though Mao had passed, the treatment of Red Guard members hasn’t gotten any better. My friend wrote that “We are put to work all day, for at least 10 hours straight, though often for longer. We get few meals, and even fewer breaks if any at all. Do your best to stay in the city, even if it means to stop publicly displaying your support of the Cultural Revolution.” However, that hasn’t seemed to help me. Part of this may be because I am unable to stop my criticisms. It’s part of my life, it is quite tough having grown up doing this.

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