Chinese Culture Essay, Research Paper
China consists mostly of two major sectors of the economy: Agriculture and Industry. China’s oldest and biggest sector of economy is agriculture. According to Chinese statements, about 75 percent of the entire Chinese labor force as of 1980 was engaged in agriculture. The agriculture is organized primarily on the basis of collective ownership; over 90% of the arable land is owned by collective ownership. Due to the fact that modern technology had taken so long to spread across the country, the flow of modern supplies became inadequate and has caused the growth of the agricultural industry to be much slower compared to that of the industrial sector. In China, there is a hierarchy of agriculture. The people’s commune controls the production brigade, which in turn controls the production team. Each commune has an average of sixteen brigades, and each brigade controls about seven teams. There is currently about 50,000 communes that exist in today’s agricultural sector. The production team consists of thirty households and anywhere from 100 to 250 members. These production teams hold the rights to the land and controlled everything concerning their property. Each team is responsible for all costs encountered each year, and at the end of the year the net profit is divided among each member according to the amount of work they have contributed. The production brigades, in turn, control the production team. Each brigade provides several social services for the teams, ranging from schooling to basic health care. The brigade also supervises the activities of the teams, and reports to the people’s commune, which is in charge of the brigades. The people’s commune is responsible for coordinating and directing the work of its brigades, as well as carrying out large-scale activities. These activities include the mobilization of large amounts of peasants for construction projects and other activities that are altogether too large for brigades to carry out. The commune also serves as a link between the government and the people, such as enforcing procurement quotas and assessing taxes. China’s second largest economical sector is industrial sector, which is extraordinarily smaller than the agricultural sector. Employing about 10% of the labor force, this small sector accounts for more than 50% of China’s GNP. Unlike the agricultural sector, China’s industrial economy is ruled by three different groups of interest: state ownership, urban collective ownership, and rural collective ownership. In 1978, state-owned enterprises produced about 81% of national industrial output and held 91.8% of fixed industrial assets. China has always had three major “religions” as long as it has been a country; Buddhism, Confucianism, and Taoism have been in china since 1000 B.C.. Although Confucianism has become the official ideology of the Chinese State, Confucianism has never been an established religion. All temples built to Confucius are used more for places of celebration than places of worship. Chinese rulers agreed with its teaching of respect for authority, and Chinese education has been based on Confucian scriptures. In fact, candidates who applied for a government job often had to pass a test based on these scriptures. Unlike Confucianism, “Taoism urges the individual to ignore the dictates of society and seek only to conform with the underlying pattern of the universe, the Tao (’way’), which can be described in words nor conceived in thought.” Opposite most beliefs/religions, Taoism does not concentrate on politics or on a single political theory. Instead, Taoism influences Chinese hygiene, aesthetics, and religion. During certain parts of Chinese history, cults developed due to Taoism and its promotion of immortality sought through the use of magic and elixirs. Also similar to Confucianism, Taoism is more of a system of beliefs than a religion. China’s largest actual religion is Buddhism, which surprisingly enough began with no written body of thought. Buddha’s disciples and early followers created written texts based on his teachings. The basis of Buddhism consists of the Four Noble Truths: 1) Life is suffering. 2) All suffering is caused by ignorance of the nature of reality and the craving, attachment, and grasping of ignorance. 3) Suffering can be ended by overcoming ignorance and attachment. 4) The path to suppression of suffering is the Noble Eightfold Path, which consists of correct views, correct intention, correct speech, correct action, correct livelihood, correct effort, correct-mindedness, and correct contemplation. China is one of the most populated countries in the world, and one of the best aspects of their country is their education. At one point in Chinese history sixty million new students enrolled in local schools in a time period of just two years. The most radical developments in Chinese education took place between 1966 and 1978, when. the traditional K through 12 grade was reduced to a nine to ten year plan, and colleges were reduced from a 4-5 year to a three-year program. These programs were formed under Mao, a now-famous dictator of China. When Mao died in 1976, the education policy was once again changed, thus leading to an increased interest in the development of science. The educational was system reverted to its original form, which meant more years of education for the youth. Another significant change in the educational system has been the re-institution of standardized college entrance exams. These exams were a regular part of the curriculum for upward mobility in China prior to the Cultural Revolution, but were eliminated along with the death of Mao. In 1977 the government set four new goals for rapid modernization, which were in agriculture, industry, defense, and science; and colleges were supposed to re-construct their curriculum based on these topics. Chinese higher education is now characterized by the “key point system.” Under this system the most promising students are placed in selected Key-point schools, which specialize in training the academic elite. China has a very good educational system in relationship to the amount of people that the country has, and they are very proud of the educational system and how well it has progressed since the influence of Mao.
As we all know Chinese is one of the toughest languages to understand and to learn. The Chinese have had a written language for almost three thousand years. This includes more than a dozen major spoken dialects. All of the writing, for all of the different dialects are the same script and character. This literary unity has been a significant factor in the history of the historical unity of the Chinese people since the Shang dynasty which was about 1766 BC. One of the most ambitious efforts by the Chinese Government since 1949 has been to modify the language. The official language spoken by the Chinese is called Putongua, to the westerners it is known as Mandarin, this is the dialect of north China. Putongua was declared the official language at the National Conference on Reform of the Chinese written language in 1955. There has also been a big debate toward changing the written language, but so far the only changes that have occurred in the written language have been fewer strokes to each character. In 1977 the Chinese made a formal request to the United Nations to have Pinyin (phonetic spelling ) romanization used for the spelling of places of names in China. This method of transliteration was created by the Chinese in the late 1950s and since then it has been undergoing specific modification. Some officials claim that Pinyin will ultimately replace Chinese characters as the written Chinese language, though this is not expected to become reality. In China more than 10 million minority members have their own spoken language, which include Mongolian, Tibetan, Miao ,Tai, Uyger, and Kazakh. Though most of these languages do not have there own form of written language, the government has been trying to encourage them to develop one of their own, using Pinyin. The Mandarin based dialect is taught in schools, usually as a second language, and also for the demand for it s need in china. Since 1726 BC china has had a organized government which was controlled under the Shang Dynasty. This makes it one of the oldest governments on earth. Historically the political control of the large Chinese population was administrated by a series of strong local governments and central capital court of varying political significance. Since the Chinese Communist came to power on October 1 1949, a steady shift toward a centralized government, based in Beijing, has been evident. The leadership of this organization, throughout many of the years has been under Mao. This knew modern structures given shape to China s first constitution. Since 1993 China is starting to become more of a socialist market economy. For the Legislative branch of china where each person is elected for a five year term, once they are elected they are a representative to congress for each 400,000 people. The Judiciary branch which the Chinese are known for having a tradition of a judicial process, that t differs considerably from that of western nations. The main focus of the judicial branch in China is the responsibility of the family, the neighborhood, or the local government. Generally speaking, that they are more interested with understanding a person s crime, in a effort to redress it s causes than with creating a highly formal judicial system. Local government consist of three major branches which are, provenance, counties and administrative towns and villages. Many people are astonished by the well control of the people, in China. For such a large population they are well organized, and they are well able to control a low crime rate country, compared to us American s. China s traditional system of values evolved over many centuries, that are in which quite different from the west. China s values started way back in the roots of Confucianism, Taoism, Buddhism an other influences. Much of there concerns are for the need of a properly ordered social relationship. In China society was seen as a hierarchical pyramid of roles, and these roles are the norms off how they should act and behave in relation to people and other roles. Even the emperor had a hierarchical though it was one that was in which that of a supernatural being. I t was thought that if all people including from emperor to the poor poorest played the role in which they were designated then society would run properly. Do, it was in great effort that these people maintained these roles. Education was the main effort in which to get the people to play there depicted role. A way that the Chinese depicted one role in society from another was the uniform in which they worried order for the people to acquire a role they needed to dress properly, they needed self-discipline people who did not have a established role would be treated with indifference or contempt. With such a preeminent emphasis on how each person to be their was not much of individualism. People who committed crimes were not seen as bad individuals they were seen as simply as a bad product of a bad family and other influences. At one time they had a Bao Jia social control system, in this system if one person in a family did a crime the whole family would be punished. The Chinese values compared to that of us Americans is quite different. The Chinese have a very strict country were individualism is not accepted. To make it in China you need to be self discipline and well obedient. All in all, the Chinese way of life is extremely diffferent than our american society. From the clothing we wear to the language we speak, the American and Chinese societies have managed to set themselves apart from the rest of the world. There is, however, one common bond between the Chinese and American people, and that bond is stronger than any government or ocean can separate. This common bond, after all, the gift of life.