Publication Date

April 2015


Su Zheng


Music, College of Social Studies


English (United States)


This thesis studies the relationship between revolutionary songs during the Chinese Cultural Revolution and their political context, specifically through the examination of the songs' original publication in People's Daily, one of the biggest Party newspapers during the ten years (1966-1976) of Cultural Revolution. It reveals the close correlation between a publication of revolutionary songs and the political events and needs surrounding the time of that publication. Revolutionary song were able to spread the political messages through lyrics efficiently and effectively, thanks to their entertainment element. In addition to lyrics, the musicality and performances of these revolutionary songs contribute to their effectiveness as propaganda tools. This thesis contributes to the existing literature on the Cultural Revolution by supplementing a crucial piece of information on this populist art form, which have often been casually dismissed in previous studies.



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