CHINA: Mao Muted except in Nanjiecun Noodle Commune

China cancelled plans for Mao’s 120th

But his tradition continues in the Nanjiecun Noodle Commune, a joint enterprise wih Japan (from the Guardian)

The day begins at 6.15am, as The East Is Red blasts through the speakers and echoes down the wide, empty streets, past the blazingly white statue of Chairman Mao, his right hand aloft in perpetual salute.

It ends at dusk with the closing refrain of another revolutionary classic: “The socialist society will surely succeed! A communist society will surely be achieved!”

Nanjiecun is as close as anywhere in China comes to fulfilling that pledge: a commune in a land that long ago embraced capitalism. With its dated atmosphere, quiet streets, wholesome ethos and street-corner Tannoys, Nanjiecun is uncannily reminiscent of the 60s TV show The Prisoner: a staged, self-contained world out of place and time. Land is still farmed collectively.

When Nanjiecun land was decollectivised, local farmers simply handed it back. Fields are now tended by a team and a grain ration given to residents. Noodles are produce for export by a factory owned jointly with Japan. made,,,Officials and workers are paid but also enjoy free water and power, free meals in canteens, and free medical care.Its 10,000 inhabitants spend food tokens in public grocery stores. Inside the gates, the clatter and clamour of modern life vanishes; exhortations from the Great Helmsman replace advertising slogans. Each home, provided by the government, has the same furniture – down to its electronic Mao calendar.





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