The Infusion of Propaganda in the Music Education in China

Louie Galvez Giray


Under the administration of the Communist China, the distinction between education and propaganda cannot be made. Various research and literatures reveal that many resources used by Chinese educational institutions, such as books and songs, are modified in order to inject views that favor People’s Republic of China and ideologies from the Communist Party. This perspective paper explores the infusion of propaganda undertaken in the education in the Communist China. It also provides a discussion on both the advantages and disadvantages of such conduct. Particularly, it elaborates on the concepts of self-preserving maneuver for social stability and country’s survival; emphasis on the welfare of the state; the domino effect in altering musical pieces; corrupted education and altered truth; manifestation of the superiority and authoritarianism of the ruling party; and the ideological remolding to establish loyalty and nationalism. It is recommended that in order for China to be faithful to its slogan, diversity in unity, respecting differences on musical works of ethnicities and not intervening on them would be a decent starting point.


Communist China, music education, propaganda, Chinese education

Full Text:



Bernays, E. L. (2008). Propaganda. Melusina.

Brady, A. M. (2009). Marketing dictatorship: Propaganda and thought work in contemporary China. Rowman & Littlefield Publishers.

Brady, A. M. (2012). Ethnicity and the state in contemporary China. Journal of Current Chinese Affairs, 41(4), 3-9.

Cherryholmes, C. H. (1980). Social knowledge and citizenship education: Two views of truth and criticism. Curriculum Inquiry, 10(2), 115-141.

Fook, J. (2011). Developing critical reflection as a research method. In Creative spaces for qualitative researching (pp. 55-64). SensePublishers.

Ho, W. C., & Law, W. W. (2004). Values, music and education in China. Music Education Research, 6(2), 149-167.

Huang, H. Y. (2015). Gramsci and Cultural Hegemony in Post‐Mao China. Literature Compass, 12(8), 404-413.

Kipnis, A. B. (2012). Constructing commonality: Standardization and modernization in Chinese nation-building. The Journal of Asian Studies, 731-755.

Kuhn, L. (2008). Complexity and educational research: A critical reflection. Educational Philosophy and Theory, 40(1), 177-189.

Leung, Y. W. (2004). Nationalistic education and indoctrination. Citizenship, Social and Economics Education, 6(2), 116-130.

Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. (2016). Education in China: A snapshot. OECD Publishing.

Pashukanis, E. (2017). The general theory of law and Marxism. Routledge.

Saywell, W. G. (1980). Education in China Since Mao. Canadian Journal of Higher Education, 10(1), 1-27.

Van Norden, B. (2007). Virtue ethics and consequentialism in early Chinese philosophy. Cambridge University Press.

Welch, D. (Ed.). (2013). Propaganda, power and persuasion: From World War I to wikileaks. Bloomsbury Publishing.

Yixing, Z., & Ma, L. J. (2003). China's urbanization levels: Reconstructing a baseline from the fifth population census. The China Quarterly, 176-196.

Yongjing, H. (2009). A Study on the System Structure of the Chinese Nation: Systematic Analysis on the Pattern of Diversity in Unity of the Chinese Nation [J]. NW Journal of Ethnology, 3.

Yuan, H. (2017). Multicultural teacher education in China: Preparing culturally responsive teachers in a multiethnic and multicultural country. US-China Education Review, 7(2), 85-97.

Zhang, W. (2017). Multicultural ethnic music education in Communist China. International Journal of Multicultural Education, 19(3), 65-84.



  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2022 Aksara: Jurnal Ilmu Pendidikan Nonformal

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Magister Pendidikan Nonformal Pascasarjana Universitas Negeri Gorontalo
Jl. Soedirman No. 06 Gorontalo 96128 e-mail: