Chinese Cultural Revolution

New database on CD-ROM

The Chinese Cultural Revolution Database
CD-ROM with hardcopy Indexes in both English and Chinese

Edited and Compiled by The Editorial Board of The Cultural Revolution CD-ROM Database in the US and Universities Service Centre for China Studies at The Chinese University of Hong Kong
Chief Editor: Song Yongyi
Editorial Board: Song Yongyi (Dickinson College in the US, Chief Editor), Shih Chih-yu (National University of Taiwan, Project Director), Ding Shu (Norman Dale Community College, USA), Zhou Yuan (University of Chicago, USA), Shen Zhijia (University of Colorado at Boulder, USA), Guo Jian (University of Wisconsin, USA), Zhou Zehao (York College of Pennsylvania, USA), Wang Youqin (University of Chicago, USA)

The largest database for the study of the Cultural Revolution with:

  1. Detailed original documents including CCP memos, instructions, proclamations, speeches and major media commentaries, etc.
  2. First-hand sources to tally 30,000,000 words
  3. Fully retrievable electronic indexes by "authors", "subject headings", "dates" and "keywords"


  • Foreword by Yu Yingshi
  • Preface by Song Yongyi
  • Part I: CCP's Documents, Directives, and Bulletins Concerning the Cultural Revolution
  • Part II: Mao Zedong's Speeches, Directives, and Writings Concerning the Cultural Revolution
  • Part III: Lin Biao's Speeches, Directives, and Writings Concerning the Cultural Revolution
  • Part IV: Speeches, Instructions and Other Writings by the CCP Leaders during the Cultural Revolution
  • Part V: Important Newspaper and Editorials and Articles Concerning the Cultural Revolution
  • Part VI: Important Documents of the Red Guards and the Mass Movement during the Cultural Revolution

  • Part VII: Important Documents of Heterodox Thoughts during the Cultural Revolution

By Song Yongyi

The Cultural Revolution that took place in the sixties of the 20th century has left a highly significant and complex chapter in not only contemporary Chinese history, but world history as well. The late John Fairbank, a distinguished Sinologist, once observed that: "The Cultural Revolution was as full of surprises as the 1790s in France. In terms of scale, impact, and complexity, however, the Cultural Revolution was of course a much bigger event than the French Revolution. At any rate, it will be studied from many angles for a long time to come." ...

The Cultural Revolution is first of all a historical tragedy. Initiated by Mao Zedong and the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) because of internal strife within the CCP, this so called "Revolution" claimed the lives of millions of innocent Chinese and inflicted excruciating pain on hundreds of millions of ordinary Chinese and their families. In addition, the Cultural Revolution caused disregard for and decline of education as well as the total collapse of all basic standards for decency and a civilized society. It also brought irreparable damage to China's age-old cultural heritage and civilization. ...

The Cultural Revolution also surprisingly changed the entire political and economic landscape of contemporary China. When Mao Zedong and the CCP disastrously pushed their erroneous political philosophy and ideology to extremes, anyone with any common sense left must have easily noticed the madness and the absurdity of the official doctrines imposed upon them. This was one of the reasons why the post-Cultural Revolution CCP leaders were compelled to adopt reform policies and open up China. It is also an established fact that the widespread skepticism of Marxism and Mao Zedong Thought that started during the Cultural Revolution provided an important impetus for democratic movements during the post-Cultural Revolution era. In light of this, the role of the Cultural Revolution in contemporary Chinese history over the past half a century merits serious study.

It has been over 30 years since the end of the Cultural Revolution. An interesting situation has emerged surrounding the study of the Cultural Revolution as a research subject both inside and outside China. ...Yet, Cultural Revolution researchers both inside and outside China are faced with many challenges. Chief among them is the lack of original historical materials as well as the absence of a mechanism systematically to collect, organize, and archive vast amounts of original historical materials. There was an abundance of publications, both official and unofficial, during the Cultural Revolution, but there is no free access to such materials in any Chinese library in post-Cultural Revolution China. On the other hand, a great many valuable Cultural Revolution resources in the hands of private collectors and researchers both in and outside of China cannot reach their full research potential for the lack of a resource-sharing mechanism. ...

It is with a view to summing up historical lessons, disclosing historical truth, and pushing forward the study of this important historical subject that some ten Mainland China scholars now living in North America formed in 1998 the Editorial Department of the Cultural Revolution CD-ROM Database, inaugurating this monumental compilation and archival project for Cultural Revolution related historical materials. Soon, their work won strong support from many scholars in Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Mainland China. The Universities Service Centre for China Studies of The Hong Kong Chinese University has even become one of the partners of this project. Over the past three years, members of the Editorial Department visited Asian libraries throughout the world, collected a great many materials from private collectors, and salvaged untold amounts of original written materials. After professional editing and proofreading of millions of official and unofficial documents, the editors collectively produced this CD-ROM database with nearly ten thousand documents. ...

Comments from Scholars

"The Cultural Revolution Database CD-ROM is an extraordinary achievement. It contains a nearly-comprehensive compilation of thousands of Central Party documents, Central leaders' speeches, official newspaper articles from the early 1960s to the late 1970s, and a selection of some of the key Red Guard texts. All are arranged in chronological order and, best of all, the user can search automatically according to names, dates, titles, and keywords. This is an essential addition to any serious research library." Andrew Walder Director of Asia/Pacific Research Center Stanford University, USA
"It has always been extremely difficult to conduct research about the Cultural Revolution. Much of the official Chinese documentation has been available only in obscure and hard-to-reach archives or buried within diverse Chinese newspapers. Now, at long last, practically everything worth having available from those tumultuous years is accessible -- and in a CD-ROM format that greatly facilitates finding the pertinent leaders' speeches, government directives, and even handbills. As a tool for researchers in modern China studies, the Cultural Revolution Database is an accomplishment of the first order." Jonathan Unger Director, Contemporary China Center Australian National University
"Scholars involved with the project are accomplished individuals in their own areas of specialty. While continuing their regular work, they devoted their spare time to scouring Asian libraries all over the world in search of all relevant materials. It was an arduous process for which even the expression: 'Many drops of water make an ocean' can barely do full justice to describe." Yingshi Yu Professor of History Princeton University, USA

System Requirements
The CD-ROM includes a software for searching key words or phrases throughout the entire text, and is to be used on personal computers running Chinese Windows 98, Windows ME, Windows NT 4.0, Windows 2000 or later versions. English Windows installed with Chinese software, such as Chinese Star is also compatible. Minimum hardware requirements are:
- An IBM-compatible computer with a Pentium processor
- A mouse or pointing devise
- A CD ROM driver
- 64 MB RAM
- Diskspace: 80 MB for the maximum installation

List Price: US$1,000 (US$800 if ordered before 30 September 2002). For all deliveries outside Hong Kong, please add US$11 by surface post and US$20 by airmail.

For ORDER and OTHER INFORMATION, please contact:
The Chinese University Press
The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Sha Tin, N. T., Hong Kong
Tel: (852) 2609 6508
Fax: (852) 2603 7355