book cover, textbook, drawing
scan, paper, black-and-white; original source: print on paper
Sanzijing shi pianren jing 三字经是拾骗人经 (The Three Character Classic is a cheater’s classic), Shanghai: Shanghai Renmin, 1974:Cover.
Anti-Confucius Campaign, Criticize Lin, Criticize Confucius Campaign, Three Character Classic, Sanzijing, workers, children, Cultural Revolution, Lin Biao, Confucius, parody, criticism
The Three Character Classic is a Cheater's Classic (Sanzijing shi pianren jing 三字经是骗人经)
In the long process of editing and rewriting the Three Character Classic which had began since it was first conceived in the 13th century, a myriad of countertexts were engendered that not only inscribed themselves in the format of the Three Character Classic but that each talked back to the original and changed or subverted its meaning. These parodies of the Three Character Classic published before and after the Cultural Revolution can be read as predecessors and as successors to the radical redefinition in critical editions of the Three Character Classic during the Campaign to criticize Lin Biao and Confucius. During this campaign, workers, peasants and soldiers, old and young were asked to (re)read the Three Character Classic in a new light: as some of the images on the covers of these publications suggest, it was they, not the intellectuals who would read and fight the Three Character Classic as it had been “cheating” them 三字经是骗人经 (SZJSPRJ 1974). This notorious collection of essays goes back to the infamous Shanghai No. 5 Iron and Steel Plant (a stronghold of Jiang Qing’s supporters).