Rethinking the Hanfu Movement, Sept.08

Fu Lujiang's Proposal for Hanfu as 2008 Olympic Standard

Fu Lujiang's Proposal for Beijing Olympic Standards

In response to HanfuTor’s email thread “Koreans are attempting to steal Hanfu”.

Thinking back to Fu Lujiang’s proposal for Hanfu as official uniform of the XXIX Olympiad and the resulting Hundred Scholars’ petition, it was in reflection a reactive, unplanned move. Within two months the project was dismissed by the authorities. The actual result was a mix of god-knows-what, primarily from the opinion of the COC and corporate sponsors. While public opinion is always met upon “open ears” (much similar for any UNESCO applications and so forth), the actual results are still slim. Remember that Sun Jiazheng of the Chinese Cultural Department noted explicitly “to let things play out naturally” in response to this proposal just weeks after it being made, and by the next month it was rejected in favor of letting Heng Yuanxiang Corp.’s so-called Tangzhuang take its place. Worst of all, unlike the APEC conference in 2001, nobody will be wearing the ‘new fashions’ of the Olympic games as a new trend or fad or whatever it is, simply because they defy any rational taste for the real world.

News of Korean government and advocacy associations about them claiming important festivities and cultural icons – it is not the first day they have started doing so, nor is it the first time (by now) the Chinese have reacted negatively regarding their inventions ‘taken away’ in propriety. While the Chinese netizens’ response are often directed at false news, the fact that the Korean authorities are attempting to get UNESCO to recognize their traditional clothes and herbal medicine is very real, and the proposal details cultures that leans more toward the Chinese standard than ever (by referring to actual Chinese texts, and even media from our Hanfu Movement research), a factor of Korean culture we can see backed up by today’s mass entertainment.

The movable-type press as invented by Koreans (prior to Gutenburg) is already in most school textbooks; Duanwu/Tano’o (端午) is still somewhat ambiguous (the Koreans claim that although SIMILAR in name, the nature is different), while herbal lore, writing system, and traditional clothing are the current hot topics and up for grabs. The prize – propriety of the heritage in world history, and means of promoting cultural greatness in the clash of civilizations: a ‘copyright’ to a weapon in the war of culture. What more credit needs to be taken away before the Han Chinese get re-recognized?

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