The Cultural Revolution may be over, but Mao worship is alive and well in some places — well, at least in one place. Mao Zedong’s only grandson, Mao Xinyu, is doing what he can to keep the flame alive.
Of all the blogs we read here at ChinaGeeks, Mao Xinyu’s is probably the worst. We added it to our blogroll (which our WordPress update has somehow deleted) months ago with the idea that it might be interesting to see what kind of person Mao’s grandson is. If his blog is any indication, he isn’t really a person of his own at all. We imagine he has his own thoughts from time to time, but his blog topics are…focused, to put it mildly. Here’s a sampling of the titles of some of his recent posts:
Grandfather [i.e., Mao Zedong] Has Had the Greatest Influence on My Life
The New Development of Mao Zedong’s National Defense Strategy
I Hope the Nation’s First Aircraft Carrier Will be Named After Mao Zedong
The Ancestral Home of My Grandfather Mao Zedong
Wen Jiabao Reports Many Aspects [of life] Make Use of Mao Zedong Thought
Remembering My Grandfather Mao Zedong on his 115th Birthday
We Love the Shaoshan [Mao Zedong’s birthplace] Cuckoo
Researching Mao Zedong’s Strategic Attack Strategy
Brief Discussion of Mao Zedong’s Strategic Attack Strategy
Mao Anqing: Remembering My Father Mao Zedong
Following in My Grandfather’s Footsteps
Noticing a pattern? Every single post on the front page of his blog is either about Mao Zedong or another elder member of Xinyu’s family, mostly his father and/or Mao’s other sons. At least his blog has a good catchphrase: “Mao Zedong’s grandson by his first wife, the country’s CPPCC representative, supports using blogs to spread Mao Zedong thought, and has received the approval of netizens.”
We suppose it’s not particularly surprising that the Mao’s grandson would spend his life in the gigantic shadow of the man himself, although we also hope he’s got more going on in his brain than what he writes on his blog.
What might be more surprising to some is that his blog is pretty well read and receives a lot of comments. His most recent post, “Grandfather Has Had the Greatest Influence on My Life” (which is actually just a repost of an interview with him in the Nanfang Daily) has over 150 so far. Here’s a sample:
Having read your entire blog, I feel very good. Being a general means nothing, you are Mao Zedong’s ancestor, the inheritor and transmitter of Mao Zedong thought, a noble undertaking to be passed down through the ages. If you can get somewhere in this undertaking, [I] wouldn’t trade that for a dozen generals. Your grandfather was great, your mother was also great enough to make you absorb yourself in the grand undertaking of absorbing and disseminating Mao Zedong thought. I believe that under the eager anticipation of these two great forebears, you will radiate with brilliance that dazzles the eyes!
The whole country prays for you and wishes you well, [we] wish you and your family eternal health and happiness, and wish that you forever walk the path of Mao Zedong.
I love Mao Zedong passionately and wish happiness to his descendants.
Enjoyed, wish you happiness
Forgetting the past is betrayal!
Long live the great Motherland! Long live the great Mao Zedong Thought! Long live the great Communist Party! Long live the great Chinese people! I wish happiness to the descendants who’ve inherited the chairman’s great work, rejuvenate and struggle hard for the Chinese people!
You get the idea.
Note: If this is none of this is a revelation to you, congrats, but we feel it will be eye-opening to many, especially those who’ve never been to China before and assume Chinese people see Mao the same way many Westerners do. Of course, the idea that all Chinese people see Mao the same way is ridiculous anyway.