Since the 18th CPC national congress, the general secretary Xi Jinping has made multiple statement about the cultural confidence. He said that “cultural confidence is more basic, wide-spread and profound” and that “the socialist confidence in path, theory and system with Chinese characteristics come down to cultural confidence”. On May 17th, 2016, Xi Jinping delivered important speeches on the working conference of philosophy and social science to point out a clear development path to advance philosophical social science with Chinese characteristics which cultural confidence emboldened us to develop.
Why cultural confidence is a part of confidence in path, theory and system. First, we need to be clear that cultural confidence is the confidence in the advanced socialist culture guided by Marxism. The socialist theory system with Chinese characteristics is a great achievement created through the combination of Marxism and the reality in China. It inherits and promotes the theoretical basis of Marxism advanced culture as well as includes the outstanding traditional Chinese culture. In the process, cultural confidence is an effective support for the development of philosophical social science with Chinese characteristics.
Marxism offers moral and scientific support for cultural confidence. It’s a key difference between China’s philosophical social science and other philosophical social science. We need to use Marxism stances, ideas and methods in academic research as well as use Marxism to guide our practice, so as to be firm in theoretical awareness and political faith and to integrate the right political direction with academic guidance, then form scientific research method of philosophical social science. We need to believe and have a clear understanding of Marxism as well as to stick to and use it, instead of seeing it as a “protocol” or “label”. In some areas, Marxism is marginalized or is more like a label, or has void content. Marxism is no where to be found in some subjects, textbooks or forum. Fundamentally, that’s the denial of the guiding place of Marxism, then philosophical social science can’t develop in a healthy way.
The outstanding traditional Chinese culture includes cultural ideal and value which remain active despite long history. Their vitality and innovation is the root and soul of the Chinese nation as well as a profound historical foundation of cultural confidence. The Chinese nation boasts 5000 years of continual civilization. There is an old Chinese saying meaning that “if those far away don’t follow your governance, improve your culture and morality to attract them to do so.” This shows the thriving vitality of the Chinese nation and how confident they are to their culture. The socialist advanced culture inherits the outstanding gene of the traditional Chinese culture; absorbs the positive elements from abroad and realizes innovative transformation and development, so as to offer strong support to construct philosophical social science with Chinese characteristics and to present that the philosophical social science with Chinese characteristics is inherited from national culture.
Firm cultural confidence is conducive to the development of philosophical social science with Chinese characteristics, because it inspires us to have a clear idea of the political stance, academic development direction and social function, then to bring up theory of Chinese stance and theory with Chinese wisdom, so as to present to the world a “China with philosophical social science with Chinese characteristics”. It can further improve China’s academic confidence, the international influence of Chinese academy and cultural soft power. This kind of confidence, includes confidence in China’s path, can lead Chinese philosophical social science with Chinese characteristics to step on a correct development road.
China’s socialist path with Chinese characteristics is a road for the CPC to lead Chinese people to explore the national rejuvenation and a road to combine the truth of Marxism with the reality of China. China’s path is not just experience and mode borrowed from other countries indiscriminately, but a theory with Chinese stance and wisdom, so as to show Chinese characteristics. this is the prerequisite of develop a philosophical social science with Chinese characteristics whose Chinese feature and style are presented in guiding ideas, subject system, academic system and discourse system. We need to have a through study for Chinese problems before we go from specific to universal to offer methods to solve world problems.
Cultural confidence is indispensable for the great rejuvenation of Chinese nation. Comprehensive national strength is relate to not only economic and political competition, but also fundamentally a cultural competition. Through cultural confidence stance, we can gather the strength of the Chinese nation. Philosophical social science is the carrier of thoughts and culture and closely connects to cultural confidence. We need to push forward the Marxism to be more adapted to the need of China, era and people, then develop and make innovation in Marxism, so as to better guide philosophical social science with Chinese characteristics and to solidify the basis of cultural confidence. We need to take consideration the reality in China and come up with innovative theoretical ideas based on the condition of ourselves. We need to show that the Marxism focuses on people and practice. The main direction of philosophical social science with Chinese characteristics is major theory and practical issues with attention form the party and the people. People’s benefit is the standard, so as to let people have more stable and firmer belief in the culture.
The general secretary Xi Jinping stressed, “If we step on our own road, we will have a wide stage, profound history and strong force to step forward. Chinese people should have this confidence, and every Chinese should have this confidence.” Strong cultural confidence is the origin of that. In the current world, all kinds of culture and ideas are interacting with each other, so we need philosophical social science with Chinese characteristics to play it’s role to build a country with strong culture and to let China have more say in the international society. This is how can China be more confident in the world interaction and competition.