This post was edited by linlinlinlin at 2013-5-3 14:43|
FROM “ANGRILY DENOUNCE” TO “BE GRAVELY HURT”—A RESEARCH ON THE SET PHRASES IN CHINA’S DIPLOMATESE
As China continues to expand its role in the international community, its diplomatese stays mechanical. Many people notice that “hurt the feelings of the Chinese people” becomes a phrase the Chinese government chooses for nearly every statement when dealing with international disagreement. For example, after French President Nicolas Sarkozy’s meeting with the Dalai Lama on December 6th, 2008, Deputy Foreign Minister He Yafei said, “The meeting grossly interfered in China’s internal affairs, severely undermined China’s core interests, gravely hurt the feelings of the Chinese people and damaged the political basis of China-France and China-EU relations.
This kind of expression has deeply influenced the thought and expression of ordinary Chinese people. They are using it frequently, no matter genuine or with irony. Even when a pop star wore a dress resembling a Japanese military flag, the Chinese people would feel hurt.
But the phrase of “hurt the feelings of the Chinese people” was not idiomatic in China 30 years ago. During the first 30 years of P.R.C, its people seemed much “stronger” and “more mighty” than nowadays. They showed their anger and “determination to win the battle against imperialism” instead of complaining the hurt.
Based on the statistic through the archives of the CCP’s mouthpiece the People’s Dailybetween 1949 and 2006, the following research will reveal the change of the set phrases in China’s diplomatese when facing international disputes, and try to provide a possible explanation for this phenomenon.THE STATISTIC OF “HURT THE FEELINGS OF THE CHINESE PEOPLE”
By searching through the archives of the People’s Daily with the keywords “中国人民(的)感情” (the feelings of the Chinese people) and “伤害/损害/损伤/有损/有伤” (hurt), more than 100 articles containing different forms of the statement “hurt the feelings of the Chinese people” were found. After reading and arranging them one by one, a list of 135 articles and a ranking of countries (or regions, organizations) which had “hurt the feelings of the Chinese people” were made.
- Japan: 58 times
- USA: 27 times
- NATO: 10 times
- India: 9 times
- France: 6 times
- Nobel Committee (Norway): 4 times
- Germany: 3 times
- Vatican City: 3 times
- EU: 2 times
- Guatemala: 2 times
- The other 11 countries: Indonesia, Albania, Vietnam, The Netherlands, The Philippines, UK, Nicaragua, South Africa, Denmark, Iceland, Jordan The list of search results can also be arranged according to the order of time (Figure 1). The figures show a sharp distinction between the Mao era (1949-1978) and the reform era (1978- ).
Between October 1949 and December 1978, the feelings of the Chinese people were hurt only three times, according to the People’s Daily.
In September 1959, when the border dispute developed between China and India, Hu Yuzhi, vice-chairman of China Democratic League stated that the anti-Chinese movement in India was “not fair to a friendly country”, and such doing hurt the feelings of the Chinese people.
The second time “the Chinese people were hurt” was in December 1959, stated by Chen Jiageng, chairman of the All-China Returned Overseas Chinese Federation, when the anti-Chinese movement broke out in Indonesia.
The third one was in July 1978, stated by Ministry of Foreign Affairs, when the Chinese government decided to stop providing aid to Albania, due to its leaders’ “malicious attacking great leader Chairman Mao and CCP in public since November 1976″.
But when the Third Plenary Session of the Eleventh CPC Central Committee decided an “open door policy” of China to the “outside world” in December 1978, the figure grew quickly. Between 1979 and 2006, the feelings of the Chinese people were hurt around 5 times every year in the articles of the People’s Daily.
Up to the year 2006, there were at least 21 countries which had “hurt the feelings of the Chinese people”, covering the continents of Asia, Europe, Africa and America. Among these countries, Japan (58 times) and the U.S.A (27 times) were the unquestionable top two. But the appearance of countries such as Guatemala, Albania, Vietnam and Nicaragua on the list tells that a country does not need to be strong or crucial to successfully “hurt the feelings of the Chinese people”.THE STATISTIC OF “INDIGNATION”, “ANGER” AND “DENOUNCE”
In order to reveal the set phrases used before 1978, the researcher referred to some articles on international disputes written in the early years of the P.R.C and fixed 3 groups of keywords to search through the archives. They were “中国人民” + “愤慨” (the Chinese people + indignation), “中国人民” + “愤怒” (the Chinese people + anger), and “中国人民” + “谴责” (the Chinese people + denounce).
The result showed an obvious difference before and after 1978 (Figure 2). Between October 1st, 1949 and December 31st, 1978, there were thousands of articles containing the selected keywords, while between January 1st, 1979 and December 31st 2006, the number of articles sharply reduced, though the lengths of time are basically the same (29.25 years and 28 years).
In many cases, the object to which the Chinese people expressed “indignation” and “denounced” was described as “imperialism and its lackeys”. The word “imperialism” was used to define “enemy states” such as U.S.A, U.K, France, Germany, Japan and so on, while the “lackeys” was the name of small pro-American countries. At the same time, so-called “Soviet revisionism” was another important target for expressing “indignation” and “denouncing”.