China's president Xi Jinping is now using rap music to spread state propaganda

William Worley
Wednesday 30 December 2015 09:40
news

Reformist rap?

Chinese propaganda has been taken to a new level. Rather than hostility towards the West, the state media has embraced a universal movement that was spawned in New York - hip-hop. Big Daddy Xi (more usually known as Xi Jinping, Chinese Premier and one of the most powerful men on Earth) has embraced rap to spread his message, and perhaps even get down with the kids.

And as hip-hop is a movement for change, so Big Daddy Xi is using to promote China state reform.

Whose idea was this?

State broadcaster CCTV produced the short music video, which features rapping by stateapproved rapper Wu Wenduo.

Big Xi himself features as an animated figure in the video and in the samples his words, taken from Big Xi's most stirring speeches, spit raw proletarian slogans like "Only the daring will prevail at key stages of reform."

Why is he making such a big deal of reform?

The song celebrates the second anniversary of the Central Leading Group for Comprehensively Deepening Reforms, which is headed by Big Daddy Xi himself. It's a pressing issue in China. While the reform group deal with all manner of issues, notably economic, the Chinese people are getting fed up with more tangible problems. The song directly addresses both the smog that dirties their streets and corrupt officials.

Why this medium?

The Communist party wants to give the impression of modernisation and online engagement, even if it does ending up looking pretty lame.

There must be some gems in this…

Of course! Some of the best lines include: "The reform group is two years old, it has done quite a lot / Flies, tigers, big foxes, CATCH CATCH CATCH CATCH!

The reform group is two years old, it has done quite a lot / Change the pricing system, change taxes, change SOEs, CHANGE CHANGE CHANGE CHANGE!" Perhaps something has been lost in translation.

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