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China announces 2nd World Congress on Marxism in Beijing

A key feature of the  recent 19th Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC), and the events leading to it, was the strong emphasis placed on Marxism in China. This was underlined in Xi Jinping’s report to the Congress. It was stated explicitly in official reports Chinese reports of the Congress in the mainstream Western media. For example the Chinese Ambassador to the UK, Liu Xiaoming, noted in the British Daily Telegraph: ‘The Congress has adopted the Xi Jinping Thought on socialism with Chinese characteristics for the new era. This is the latest adaptation of Marxism to Chinese conditions. It is the CPC’s understanding of the laws of social progress and it answers the question of how to adhere to and continue building socialism with Chinese features.’

This CPC emphasis on Marxism is of key significance for both wings of the political spectrum:​

  • The international right wing of the political spectrum has claimed that China’s extraordinary economic growth, the most rapid in a major country in human history, is due to it adopting ‘capitalism’ and that Marxism in China was is a mere remnant of the past and ‘for show’ – but in that case why is the 19th Congress actually further stressing and reinforcing the role of Marxism? The events around the 19th Congress therefore directly contradict this right wing analysis of China.
  • For those on the left wing of the political spectrum the emphasis on Marxism in China is evidently of great direct importance. An ‘unofficial’ analysis of China’s present role in strengthening Marxism internationally by Liu Zhiqin, Senior Fellow at Chongyang Institute Renmin University of China, one of China’s leading Think Tanks, was already noted on this website. ​Now China has announced that the 2nd World Congress on Marxism will be held in China in May next year.

​This Congress on Marxism is clearly a further step in China entering into dialogue with Marxists in other parts of the world and is in direct line with the events at the 19th CPC Congress. Because of the importance of this the announcement in Xinhua of the Congress on Marxism is reproduced in full below.

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BEIJING, Oct. 22 – The 2nd World Congress on Marxism is scheduled to be held in Peking University in Beijing next May, the organizer said Sunday.

The congress, to be held from May 5 to May 6, is expected to attract more than 300 Marxism researchers to discuss Marxism in the 21st century and its developments in China.

The congress coincides with the 200th anniversary of Karl Marx’s birth and 40th anniversary of China’s reform and opening-up, said Gu Hailiang, head of the academic board of the organizing committee.

It will be a significant event for the world Marxism research and scientific socialism, Gu told a press conference.

The conference, with the theme of “Marxism and the current world and China”, will have 17 subforums covering topics like Chinese solution and modernization approach by the developing countries, said Sun Daiyao, vice president of the School of Marxism of Peking University.

Gu said the congress will focus on Marxism research by the global academic circle and Marxism in current China.

The congress will help to interpret to the world academic circle the “China road, China theory and China experience”, Gu said.

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