Essay on Marxist Pedagogy : Highest Directives

757 Words Oct 28th, 2015 4 Pages
Revolutionary pedagogy: “Highest Directives” in textbook
The textbooks in the era of Cultural Revolution provide a unique perspective to the establishment of Mao’s cult. Although generally regarded a presentation of academic background and kept at a distant from political turmoil, textbooks didn’t escape from the politicization during the Cultural Revolution; rather it bore witness to the Maoists’ attempt of upraising Mao Thought to an omnipresent, universal and unchallengeable place. Similar to the banners, posters and flyers in the public places, the textbooks also carry the task of occupying the visual space and establishing a monopoly of political voice. Photographs of the preserved textbook have shown that Mao’s quotes, titled “Highest Directives”, frequently appeared at the beginning of each chapter. Furthermore, adding to the prevalence of Mao’s quotes and images were diverse aspects of political propaganda, achieved through the various context and examples of the textbook. For instance, a short passage in an English textbook described “an American black boy” who is “cruelly oppressed” but “fighting against their oppressor”; in a mathematics textbook, a problem was designed as “calculate the amount of money exploited during five years by a landlord who practiced snowballing usury in the old society”. The reoccurring narrative of the miserable fate of people in either the old society or the capitalist states hereby gained a lively and visible representation, though…

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