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"The East Is Red" (simplified Chinese: 东方红traditional Chinese: 東方紅pinyin: Dōngfāng Hóng) is a song that was the de facto anthem of the People's Republic of China during the Cultural Revolution in the 1960s. The lyrics of the song were attributed to Li Youyuan, a farmer from northern Shaanxi, and the melody was derived from a local folk song. He allegedly got his inspiration upon seeing the rising sun in the morning of a sunny day.

The song was played through PA systems in every city and village at dawn and at dusk.[citation needed] A broadcast show usually began with the song "The East Is Red", and ended with the song "The Internationale". Students were obliged to sing the song in unison every morning at the very beginning of the first class of the day. During this period, Tian Han, the author of the official anthem The March of the Volunteers, was imprisoned, and so that song was not used.

The tune was later merged into the famous Yellow River Piano Concerto in 1969 by Yin Chengzong, and the concerto was based on the Yellow River Cantata by Xian Xinghai.

Because of its associations with the Cultural Revolution, the song was rarely heard after the rise of Deng Xiaoping in the late 1970s. Today in China the song is considered a somewhat unseemly reminder of the cult of personality associated with Mao and has largely been replaced by the "March of the Volunteers", whose lyrics mention neither the Communist Party nor Mao. "The East is Red" is still commonly heard in recordings played by electronic cigarette lighters bearing Mao's face that are popular with tourists.[1]

The tune of The East Is Red is played in chimes every daylight hour from the clock tower on the Bund in Shanghai and from the Drum Tower in Xi'an. It is also heard at the top of every hour at the Beijing Railway Station.

Contents

Lyrics

Simplified Chinese Pinyin English translation

东方红,太阳升,
中国出了个毛泽东。
他为人民谋幸福,
呼尔嗨哟,他是人民大救星!

毛主席,爱人民,
他是我们的带路人,
为了建设新中国,
呼尔嗨哟,领导我们向前进!

共产党,像太阳,
照到哪里哪里亮。
哪里有了共产党,
呼尔嗨哟,哪里人民得解放!

Dōngfāng hóng, tàiyáng shēng,
Zhōngguó chū liǎo ge Máo Zédōng,
Tā wèi rénmín móu xìngfú,
Hū'ěr-hei-yo, tā shì rénmín dà jiùxīng!

Máo zhǔxí, ài rénmín,
Tā shì wǒmén de dàilùrén
Wèile jiànshè xīn Zhōngguó,
Hū’ěr-hei-yo, lǐngdǎo wǒmén xiàng qiánjìn!

Gòngchǎndǎng, xiàng tàiyáng,
Zhàodào nǎlǐ nǎlǐ liàng,
Nǎlǐ yǒu liǎo Gòngchǎndǎng,
Hū‘ěr-hei-yo, nǎlǐ rénmín dé jiěfàng!

The east is red, the sun is rising.
China has brought forth a Mao Zedong.
He works for the people's welfare.
Hurrah, He is the people's great savior!

Chairman Mao loves the people.
He is our guide
To build a new China.
Hurrah, he leads us forward!

The Communist Party is like the sun.
Wherever it shines, it is bright.
Wherever there is a Communist Party,
Hurrah, there the people are liberated!

External links

See also

References

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