I agree that it's unambiguous that what Mao wrote is "correct ideas,"
rather than "the correct ideas."
In fairness to the Swedisth translator, though, it should be noted that
Chinese does not use a definite article like "the" (or le/la/les); so
it's not as if he added the word where the original would have had one if
it was supposed to be there.)
On Tue, 7 Nov 2006, Leif Strandberg wrote:
> I checked my Little Red Book (from 1968) and saw that Mao wrote about three
> (3) kinds av social practice:
> the stuggle for production
> the class struggle
> scientific experiments
> (p 206)
> Just a note from Sweden - where we had a conflicted conversation about just
> that quote - as the Swedish translator wrote;
> Where do the (sic) correct ideas come from....
> But Mao wrote "correct ideas".
> It was interesting to look in the old book again - esp after reading Jung
> Chang's and Jon Halliday's book Mao The unknown story.
> 2006-11-05 kl. 16.51 skrev Tony Whitson:
>> Actually, Mao was attempting to render Marxist theory in a way that would
>> be accessible. His essay "On Practice" ["Shijian Luen" - could be
>> translated "On Praxis"]. The English is at
>> & that site would have it in many other languages as well.
>> This is one of the essays that everybody in China studied during the
>> Cultural Revolution. I bet many knew it almost by heart. When Mao wrote
>> for the masses, he was very deliberate about limiting the vocabulary so
>> that everyone could read it (which was a good thing for second-year
>> students of Chinese in places like the US!); but he doesn't shy away from
>> presenting concepts like "social praxis" in a theoretically rich way.
>> As I recall the standard English version of the slogan (which I don't see
>> now, and which might actually be not from this text itself):
>> "Where do correct ideas come from? From social practice, and from nowhere
>> This was pretty straightforward Marxism, against Hegelian or other
>> On Sun, 5 Nov 2006, Jay Lemke wrote:
>>> Praxis, as I understand it, is not activism. It is the near-fusion of
>>> practice and theoretical understanding, with the latter informed by
>>> participation in practice, and informing an always-learning and
>>> ever-changing practice. I was, of course, quoting Mao a bit
>>> provocatively in regard to correct ideas coming from the people, and
>>> assumed it was clear what people he was referring to. He was speaking,
>>> in context, of course, to cadres working with the masses, and he was
>>> talking about praxis without using the formal vocabulary.
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