Chinese Netizens Marvel At The Handwriting Of Mao’s Grandson

Mao Zedong's grandson Mao Xinyu.

Chinese netizens reactions to Mao Xinyu’s “calligraphy”, poking fun at his bad handwriting, especially in contrast to the famous writings and calligraphy of his grandfather Mao Zedong.

From NetEase:

Mao Zedong’s grandson Mao Xinyu’s family and calligraphy

I saw that a netizen was searching for Mao Xinyu’s calligraphy, so I’m posted what I’ve found and collected from searching online. Included are photos of his mother Shao Hua and son Mao Dongdong, with no intent on violating their privacy. Hope everyone can comment harmoniously, for reasons you already know!

Mao Xinyu family photo.

1: Mao Xinyu with father Mao Anqing and Mother Shao Hua

Mao Xinyu with his father Mao Anqing and mother Shao Hua.

2: Mao Xinyu, wife Liu Bin, Mother Shao Hua, son Mao Dongdong

Mao Xinyu with his wife Liu Bin, mother Shao Hua, and son Mao Dongdong.

3: Mao Xinyu’s family. I don’t know why but wherever Liu Bin is, Mao Dongdong is with her. Is it only because of a close mother-son relationship?

Mao Xinyu family photo.

Mao Xinyu family photo.

Mao Xinyu family photo.

Mao Xinyu being interviewed.

Mao Xinyu writing.

Mao Xinyu's handwriting.

“Wish full success of grandpa Mao Zedong 100th anniversary project hope charity event”
“Wish full success of grandpa Mao Zedong 100th anniversary project hope charity event”
“Greetings to the readers of Changsha Evening News”
“Greetings to the readers of Changsha Evening News”
“Cherish the memories of the Great Man Mao Zedong, donation to help education at Changlong”
“Cherish the memories of the Great Man Mao Zedong, donation to help education at Changlong”
“First Normal University is a good school”
“First Normal University is a good school”
“I will forever love, I hope to have the chance to frequently interact with netizens”
“I will forever love, I hope to have the chance to frequently interact with netizens”
“You know too much”
“You know too much”
“Mao Zedong Thought forever emanates glory, Jinggangshan spirit pass on to the next generation, a blue sky future will be even better”
“Mao Zedong Thought forever emanates glory, Jinggangshan spirit pass on to the next generation, a blue sky future will be even better”
[Note: Jinggangshan is known as the birthplace of the Chinese Red Army.]
“The top of the mountain is a good place”
“The top of the mountain is a good place”
“Deeply yearn for my beloved grandfather”
“Deeply yearn for my beloved grandfather”
“Mao Zedong”
“Mao Zedong”
Chinese netizes post photos of Mao Xinyu's handwriting.
“Long live the unity of the Chinese nation!”
Chinese netizens "admire" the calligraphy of Mao Xinyu, Mao Zedong's grandson.
“Best wishes to Red Tourism Online”

Mao Xinyu's mother's handwriting.

6. [Mao Xinyu’s mother] Shao Hua’s calligraphy

Mao Xinyu's son's handwriting.

7. [Mao Xinyu’s son] Mao Dongdong’s “calligraphy”

Comments from NetEase:


At any rate, [he] still the descendant of a great person,sigh!!! In the Celestial Kingdom, anything is possible. Be more open-minded!!!


Whose grandson is this?


Haha, there is karma.


[If] Chairman Mao saw these characters, he would faint from anger.




I am very pleased/satisfied by the 1 year old child’s calligraphy/handwriting.


In the future when my dad tells me my handwriting is bad, I’m definitely going to show my dad these beautiful examples!


Do not mock and attack someone just because their handwriting is not good, bad handwriting does not mean one’s ability or character is bad, even Qin Hui’s handwriting was very good. [I] Really despise those who like to nitpick other people.


So shameful.
After so many years and he [clearly] hasn’t practiced [to improve]
His grandfather can use his foot and still write better than him.


After all, the person on the Renminbi is his grandfather.


Well written!!! But still not as well written as my mentally retarded cousin!!!


This is art.


This is the handwriting of a great man and today’s youngest general, and I really cannot flatter it. It looks like it was written with his foot. He is leagues away from his grandfather, and yet he dares to even show such handwriting. Incredible! Incredible!!! Fortunately China is not like North Korea [where power was passed down within the family]!!!


You people really TMD deserve to be beaten. No matter how worthless Mao Xinyu is, at least he didn’t go start a company, depend on guanxi or become some chairman of some institution. Look at the princelings today, how many are honest people, why don’t you pick on these people?  Did your head get kicked by a donkey?


Chairman Mao was born in 1893, 2003 was his 110 anniversary
The person who wrote this really is retarded.

Note: several of the pictures of Mao Xinyu’s handwritings were clearly Photoshopped by netizens.

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Written by Joe

Joe is a documentary producer and journalist based in Shanghai

  • Chef Rocco

    This is the pain of offspring when shadowed by a giant.

    • mankouzanghua

      regression towards the mean…

    • Justin

      He is so fat, I don’t think anyone can overshadow him. In the words of Weird Al’s “Eat it,” I think his “shadow weighs 42 pounds.”

      • Justin

        On a side note, his wife is pretty hot. Way to go fatty. But maybe she is just turned on by the idea of being impregnated with “Invincible Mao Zedong Genes.”

        • Bill Rich

          Who dares to turn down the proposal from Mao’s grandson ?

    • Bill Rich

      Don’t knock shadows. Mao’s shadow gave him:
      1. A PHD
      2. Major General position
      3. Beautiful wife
      4. Money to spend

  • BlackSugarDaddy

    safaaaaaaa. Hey Fauna, I need a feet & butt massage !

  • bixbeiderbaby

    Isn’t there a difference btw calligraphy and just writing?

    • Sunni

      The term calligraphy has a different meaning in China.
      Actually, let me rephrase that. There isn’t an absolutely correct English translation for what we refer to as “calligraphy”. What we mean by calligraphy is a measure of aesthetics for any and all writing.

  • rchan

    having that much armfat can’t help… give the guy a break!

  • Rick in China

    Amusing, ” Fortunately China is not like North Korea [where power was passed down within the family]!!!”

    Ya, that’s why this fat retard is a Major General, the youngest general in China, and the size of 4 average mainland Chinese. That’s why this gorilla magically has a PhD. Nothing to do with his ancestry, purely talent…..most definitely.

    • Chef Rocco

      I am actually glad that he is not as nearly smart as Gorge W. Bush who was magically elected into presidency (presumably with family helps?), then dragged US into a deep pit with his god-whispering missions. PRC is big enough to pay a little more salary to its founder’s grandson, no harm…

      • anne

        Suddenly reminded of the time Bush asked what American State Wales was in. Meanwhile this fat guy makes me want to barf.

      • Rick in China

        Of course Bush got where he was with family ties, and incredibly smart politicians guiding him…evil, but smart. Bush, unfortunately, wasn’t (neither evil nor smart, imo).

        That’s irrelevent. The point I’m making is this dude is what/where he is due to his grandpa, that’s it, and the thought of “people here get where they are based on skill, not family ties” is a joke, no?

        • mankouzanghua

          what information do you have that the little big mao is dumb? coming from a powerful family doesn’t mean he couldn’t have earned something. (this goes more for getting a PhD than for being appointed general, in my opinion). if you know more about his story I’d be interested to know…

        • whichone

          actually ditto the comment from mankouzanghua, I mean, he only looks retarded (kind of), who knows, maybe he did earn his Ph.D

          • mankouzanghua

            yes, yes, that’s what I mean but more succinctly.

          • andysomething

            he does not only look retard, dude.
            i m a chinese, u should watch his video of talking about those teachers without teaching license, in 1min and 30sec, he said nothing but ‘umm’, ‘ ehh’ and ‘ teachers without teaching license are not recognized by the country’. he is a retard… :(

          • Alikese

            Look at that picture where he is sitting at the desk writing, his chins are so big that he can barely look down to see his paper. This isn’t a guy who was spending 60 hours a week in a library researching his thesis.

            Uggh, and you can practically smell the baijiu and chicken grease wafting off of him in those pictures.

  • bscalled

    If that’s his wife she’s not bad looking for a man who is over-weight. I could be wrong, but she must have been attracted to his hand-writing skills.

    • Da Mao Houzi

      Sometimes China is difficult to understand. Illiteracy is rampant, most villagers cannot read or write. Most students or adults cannot write in a way that I can read it due to their “grass script” the goal of writing is to communicate a message. I think it is funny to see Chinese people trying to read each others handwriting. These examples are clearly legible. Why set that standard at artistic expression when hundreds of millions cannot write or read.

      • mankouzanghua

        what? the Chinese are superstars in terms of literacy, even with the difficulty of the writing system.

        they can read each others’ handwriting even if it is exceedingly difficult for us to do so.

        • Da Mao Houzi

          more than half of the people in china cannot read a newspaper

          • lkjhgfdsa

            more than 51.456% of the people in US cannot read a newspaper, including their president

          • travismurphy

            China places 83rd in the world for literacy rates at 93.3%.
            dont be fuckin ignorant, at over a billion people 93% is amazing. do your research.


          • tim

            wiki can be edited anytime and by anyone don’t be naive!

            It isn’t so much the reading and writing part it is the speaking part in china., that most can not understand or use. they all use their dialects more than standard putonghua

          • Da Mao Houzi

            I do not think you have ever been to China. If you have, tell me how many times you have seen someone selling newspapers?. I have lived, travelled and worked there for 4 years. I was born in China some years ago to diplomat parents and lived my first 16 years there. Anyone who grew up during the great leap forward and the cultural revolution would have had trouble going to school. Currently, each school child before they reach grade four gets a “National Literacy Certificate” for being in school, untested. These are then used to colllect statistics door to door in surveys. Statistics are collected on a very local Dan Wei level, a term you may know as “commune”. This is usually done by villagers who want to please the collective higher ups. All statistics in China are a lie, anything to embellish the country. Here is a quote from a book, which I wrote, after spending 6 months studying literacy rates in China. This study below was done by the Chinese government. The Chinese government has never done a study in which the examined were required to write characters.


            [Note from Fauna: This comment has been edited because it is much too long with copied text. Please revise or resubmit with a link to what you want to share. A copy of your entire comment was emailed to you for your convenience.]

          • Da Mao Houzi

            travis murphy

            I do not think you have ever been to China. If you have, tell me how many times you have seen someone selling newspapers?. I have lived, travelled and worked there for 4 years. I was born in China some years ago to diplomat parents and lived my first 16 years there. Anyone who grew up during the great leap forward and the cultural revolution would have had trouble going to school. Currently, each school child before they reach grade four gets a “National Literacy Certificate” for being in school, untested. These are then used to colllect statistics door to door in surveys. Statistics are collected on a very local Dan Wei level, a term you may know as “commune”. This is usually done by villagers who want to please the collective higher ups. All statistics in China are a lie, anything to embellish the country. Here is a quote from a book, which I wrote, after spending 6 months studying literacy rates in China. This study below was done by the Chinese government. The Chinese government has never done a study in which the examined were required to write characters.

            “Taking a communists countries statistics at face value is fraught with risk. Literacy includes being able to both read and write. A 1996 literacy test in the PRC of 6,000 adults aged 20-69, using a “stratified national probability sample”, can only provide hints of literacy in China.

            In 1996 China’s adult literacy rate, age 15+, was stated at about 85 percent, according to Beijing Government published studies. China’s age stratified literacy rates are not always clear. Sometimes it refers to all adults. Sometimes it doesn’t include the elderly, whose rate of illiteracy is much higher than those born more recently. Sometimes it excludes everyone born before the founding of the PRC on October 1, 1949. And sometimes other limits are used.

            The threshold for literacy was set at recognition of 1,500 characters for a rural inhabitant, and 2,000 characters for a “worker or staff member employed by an enterprise or institution or any urban resident.” This sets two literacy rates for one country. Given that you need about 3,500 characters to read a newspaper, 1,500 characters are not going to provide anything resembling full literacy. Studies carried out in China have shown that full literacy requires knowledge of between three and four thousand characters.

            My apolgies that the table formatting is not preserved.


          • Da Mao Houzi

            The Study

            10 characters were presented to the subjects.

            Characters Pinyin English % not responding
            一萬 yīwàn ten thousand 19.1
            姓名 xìngmíng full name 22.3
            糧食 liángshi grain; cereals; food 23.6
            函數 hánshù function (math) 50.9
            肆虐 sìnüè ravage; devastate; be rampant 65.8
            雕琢 diāozhuó cut and polish (jade/etc.); carve; write in an ornate style 62.0
            彳亍 chìchù walk slowly 98.6
            舛謬 chuǎnmiù error; mishap 98.3
            耆耄 qímào octogenarian 98.3
            饕餮 tāotiè a mythical ferocious animal; fierce and cruel person; a glutton; sb. of insatiable cupidity 99.4

            Over 98% of test subjects were unable to recognize four of the characters. Over 50% were unable to recognize 7 of the characters. The median score for university students was 6 out of ten. Moreover, literates were to be able to “read popular magazines and essays, to keep simple accounts, and to write simple essays.” Yet at the same time some one-fifth of China’s adult population could not recognize even such common and simple words as ( 一万, yī wàn, 10,000) as written in extremely common and relatively simple Chinese characters (一万).

            Moreover, the characters in (姓名, xìng míng, full name) and (糧食, liángshi, cereal grain) are also well within the 1,500 most frequently used characters and should thus be known by all literate Chinese. The cumulative figure for those unable to identify all the characters given within the 1,500 minimum (for rural inhabitants) is 24 percent (see table below). That speaks of a literacy rate no greater than 76 percent, which is considerably less than the 85 percent the government was claiming.

            However, more factors need to be considered. The study took roughly equal samples from China’s rural and urban populations (3,087 urban residents and 3,003 rural residents). But in 1996 about 75 percent of China’s population lived in rural areas, where literacy tends to be significantly lower than in the cities:

            Because the more literate urban population is overrepresented, the literacy figure needs to be adjusted down from the 76 percent given earlier. This further reduces literacy to about 57 percent, which gives an illiteracy rate more than twice as high as China was claiming. But, the picture gets bleaker.

            A real test of literacy must however include the ability to write. This was not tested. Being able to write Hanzi is much more difficult than passively recalling characters. This may double the illiteracy rate to less than 50%.

            In my travels in China, far less than half the population I have encountered can speak Hanyu effectively and many write Hanzi so poorly it is unrecognizable. If you tell this to a Chinese student at the University of Toronto who grew up in Beijing, they will not believe it. What they know is what they have been told. Chances are they have never been to Hunnan, Yunnan, Guizhou, Sichuan, Guangdong, and Guangxi. I have spent many days in huge cities where I did not meet one person who spoke Hanyu. A more reasonable number for functional literacy of the official written and spoken language is 30%.

            During national surveys, literacy is measured indirectly by teams noting educational attainment and checking “illiteracy eradication certificates”. County level education departments or work units are responsible for assessing through surveys or tests the literacy of students and awarding literacy certificates to individuals who have not completed the fourth grade of six-year primary school, the third grade of five-year primary school, or an intensive primary school.

            Completion of as little as three years of primary school is enough to get someone listed automatically as literate irrespective of their actual literacy. Although that might be appropriate to serve as a measure of basic literacy in a language that uses an alphabet, it is not when dealing with Chinese characters. Hanzi requires many years to learn and also requires a great deal of reinforcement through practice lest the learner lapse back into illiteracy. Other people are listed as being literate based on possession of an illiteracy-eradication certificate. These certificates are awarded by authorities at the county level or at a person’s danwei; inflation of figures at the local or danwei levels, however, is common. This is in a country where university degrees can be bought. The reasons for this can be summed up as “Individuals worry about punishment, officials worry about performance assessment, and enterprises worry about additional charges.”

            China is an amazing conglomerate of many different cultures held together longer than any other functional civilization. They do not in reality share a common spoken language in daily use. A common term in China when two people meet from different areas is “write it down”. Hanzi has far more utility than Hanyu. As education improves and people travel more, Hanyu will come into more universal use.
            So, that is an exerpt. many areas of china do not have schools, many do not have teachers. Given that mandarin is the official language, most do not speak it at home. village, ethnic, city, provincial and ethnic languages prevail.

            I have worked in many areas in which I was the only one that speaks standard Mandarin. In my wife’s village, of 1800, 1 1/2 hours outside of Beijing, none of the adults over 50 years of age have ever been to a structured school. The local language is “Dingzhou hua” much of which I struggle to understand. My wife speaks a different language to her parents. When she is in Baoding, a hour away, she speaks a different language yet. When we are in Baoding, she speaks another language. When we are in Beijing, she speaks Beihua, the language I grew up using.

            On our honeymoon, we spend a month circling China. On a bus tour in Yunnan, we travelled for three days all over Yunnan province, to many ethnic villages. Many of the villages had no schools. None of the villagers could speak but a few words of Mandarin. The bus was another story. It was very funny, the tour quide was from Chengdu and spoken Chengdu hua, a branch of southern Mandarin. Many could not understand her. I worked in Chengdu for a year so I could sort out the “si busi” from the “shi bushi”. I understood her better than my wife. The communciation of the bus was like the biblical Babel, the people were very friendly, shared food and snacks as is the Chinese way. The bus driver spoke some language that I do not know.

            China is a third world country. This term is no longer politically correct but it describes the economic situation aptly.The median income is less that $1.50 a day. Not sure what your experience is but you need to shake your head when you look at the statistics on that link. There are some desparately poor countries at the top of the list, these are all self reported.

            Here are some of the books and CD’s I have published on Chinese character writing and one grammar book.

            Kangxi Radical CD Practice Sheets CD-ROM

            Hanzi and the Kangxi Radicals Book

            Chinese Grammar 101 Book

            Chinese Grammar 101 Book

            The First 101 Chinese Characters Book

            The Second 500 Chinese Character Practice Drills Book

            The First 500 Chinese Character Practice Drills Book

            300 Easy Chinese Characters Book

            The Rules of Chinese Characters and Mandarin, Book 1A Book

            300 Easy Chinese Characters CD-Extra

            300 Easy Chinese Characters CD-Extra

            101 Easy Chinese Characters Book

            978-1-926564-04-3 The Fourth 251 Most Common Chinese Characters Book

            978-1-926564-03-6 The Third 251 Most Common Chinese Characters Book

            978-1-926564-02-9 The Second 251 Most Common Chinese Characters Book

            978-1-926564-01-2 425 Chinese Characters Using 1 to 5 Strokes CD Practice Sheets CD-ROM

            978-1-926564-00-5 425 Chinese Characters Using 1 to 5 Strokes Book

            978-0-9810576-9-9 425 Advanced Chinese Characters CD Practice Sheets CD-ROM

            978-0-9810576-8-2 425 Advanced Chinese Characters Book e

            978-0-9810576-7-5 425 Intermediate Chinese Characters CD Practice Sheets CD-ROM

            978-0-9810576-6-8 425 Intermediate Chinese Characters Book

            978-0-9810576-5-1 The 251 Most Common Chinese Characters CD Practice Sheets CD-ROM

            978-0-9810576-4-4 The 251 Most Common Chinese Characters Book

            978-0-9810576-3-7 425 Easy Chinese Characters CD Practice Sheets CD-ROM

            978-0-9810576-2-0 425 Easy Chinese Characters Book

          • Bill Rich

            Including those with PhD’s ?

          • Teacher in China

            That is the most thorough beat-down I have ever seen in my life. Maybe next time you’ll stop and think before swearing at someone and using wikipedia as your “research”.

          • mankouzanghua

            You make some good points, but amidst those you get away from your own original argument: the primary function of writing is communication.

            A meaningful study of literacy would need to look at whether people can read characters in their context and – more important than pronouncing any individual character – whether they can get the idea from the message. For example, 19.1% didn’t recognize 一万. However, could they read it if it was in an article in a newspaper or the subtitles of a TV show? Adding context can only improve chances of recognition, and the 80.9% figure therefore starts to look more like a lower bound for such a test.

            Going beyond this idea of “context,” one can continue to call into question (and argue all day about) what it means to be literate. Does missing one, five, or ten of the 1500 or 2000 basic characters mean that someone is illiterate? Near the end of the book excerpt in your post you mention that the go-to means of scaling the language barrier in China is “write it down” – that “Hanzi has far more utility than Hanyu.” From this it seems to me that you yourself in some ways have cause to remark about the ability of the writing system to provide a bit of unity to the country. At least to me, this would seem a little hard to reconcile with an estimate of a 30% functional literacy rate (e.g., does “write it down” only work about 3 out of 10 times? excluding the oldest generations, since one or both people don’t understand Hanyu, you’d assume they aren’t very highly educated and the likelihood of such a method working should be even lower, right?).

            I agree with your skepticism of many official statistics but would take it even farther, arguing that literacy can’t be meaningfully quantified without a survey designed rigorously and with a great deal of thought undertaken about what it means to be “literate.”

            At least for my conception of what literacy is — getting and sharing meaning within the context of an everyday situation — the PRC has done an incredible job of popularizing literacy in its time.

            Still, you made an interesting post that I’m glad I read.

          • sonostraniero

            People in the countryside definitely don’t have the literacy ability of those in the urban areas, but at the same time, there are a lot of older people in the urban areas who can’t even read.

            So far as the countryside goes, my mother-in-law can’t recognize even one character and speaks only dialect, tough in communicating with her. Reminds me that a few years back when I first came to China, I ran into an old man that couldn’t even understand Mandarin, people who spoke the local dialect were the only ones that could talk with and understand him, and this was in Hebei a northern province right next to Beijing =o. Just my own experience, though I’ve been in China for some time, I don’t like to travel so much…

            On a side note, I took a look at the characters that were given as a measure of literacy, I couldn’t recognize 6 out of 10… damn time to hit the books again. In my defense, the last few characters are hardly ever used, most probably in classical texts and/or formal writing.

            Last thing, Mr. Hou zi, I quickly tried to look up your books on Amazon and Google, but couldn’t find the first three titles on your list on there. Could you point to a website or online store so that I could browse =).

          • Da Mao Houzi

            If you go to amazon and type in the search box, da mao houzi you should see a dozen or so books i have published. academic books are generally not sold by amazon, chapters, indigo etc. they are sold via a cataloque distribution system to libraries.

          • mistyken

            cool…im absolute delighted for the fact that i know what is a 饕餮, i guess playing video games has its use after all LOL. but the meaning of 彳亍, 舛謬, 耆耄 escapes me……

      • Bill Rich

        Come on. This guy supposedly has a PhD. In China, that means you are elite, educated, and civilized. That means you know at least how to read and write, and write like a PhD.

      • Da Mao Houzi


        UN definition

        The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization defines an illiterate person as someone who can not, with understanding, both read and write a short, simple statement on his or her everyday life. A person who can only read but not write, or can write but not read is considered to be illiterate. A person who can only write figures, his or her name or a memorized ritual phrase is also not considered literate.

        Furthermore, this concept of literacy includes persons who, though familiar with the basics of reading and writing, might still be considered functionally illiterate.

        Pakistan, maybe honest

        UN site

        China’s official definition

        “The threshold for literacy was set at recognition of 1,500 characters for a rural inhabitant, and 2,000 characters for a “worker or staff member employed by an enterprise or institution or any urban resident.”

        Note nothing about writing, reading,

      • your points are interesting, but let us not lose sight of the fact that all of China’s educated urban young and middle aged people can read and write to the point where they can conduct all the business you need to conduct in a modern society. Anyone who finishes high school in China will read and write without trouble.

        Yes the writing system is difficult, but have you ever thought about how totally illogical English spelling is? Think about how a word like rough is written. But do the US or the UK have a problem with illiteracy?

        • Da Mao Houzi

          your points are interesting, but let us not lose sight of the fact that China has an inverted pyramid distibution of people due to the one child policy. You are incorrec that “all of China’s educated urban young and middle aged people can read and write to the point where they can conduct all the business you need to conduct in a modern society.” Vaste areas of China have no schools, no teachers, and no mandatory school requirements. China is a country that hosts the olympics, puts men in space, but until very recently families had to pay for all levels of education. This is not true either, ” Anyone who finishes high school in China will read and write without trouble.” My wife happened to live in the district with the best highschool in Dingzhou. If you lived outside of the area, you had to give the principal $5000 in american money to get into the school. He drives a Mercedes and many of the teachers drive Audi’s, on pay of 1200 to 1800 kuai a month ($200 to $300) CAD. Students could buy grades and diplomas. Performance grades and graduation are only vaguely related.

          Most Chinese define “Chinese language ” by their own variation of family language. But remember that the one child policy doubles the number of aged people each generation and the older people who had no education far outnumber the “educated urban young and middle aged people “. Most peopel in China have had no or only rudimentary education, again, you need to look at a fair definition of literacy. It includes being able to read and write. China’s definition of literacy is very convenient, they never measure writing skills and all school children before grade 4 get a “Literacy certificate”

        • Let’s also not lose sight of the fact that many of those who do graduate even from university will gradually forget how to hand-write Chinese characters from non-use.

          I once sat in a group of co-workers, all of who had graduated from university, and all of whom, like me, did all of their written communication via email, but not one of whom could remember how to write “聪” by hand. Eventually one of them checked it on their phone and only then remembered what the strokes were.

          • donscarletti

            Complex, but no worse than English spelling.

        • Da Mao Houzi

          What is it about “rough” that is difficult to understand. ?


          are you assuming that some other construction is the correct one?

          English is composed of many language streams. “rough” is West Frisian / Germanic and follows expected pronunciation patterns.

  • pervertt

    Those of you old enough to remember having your hand smacked for writing outside of the calligraphy grid sheet can be permitted to smile.

  • Justin

    I think this is kind of funny considering that the vast majority of the average post-80s, post-90s college students and graduates confess to having trouble writing some characters by hand since the advent of computers and text messaging, according to a number of surveys by major institutions, such as Renmin University, Tsinghua, etc.

  • song of the article,

    Planet X marks the spot
    – Dr. Steel


  • Nathan

    Umm… who gives a fuck? I am the grandson of a well known civil engineer.. should I be great at building airports just like him…. typical Chinese obsession with ‘who’s who.’ I’m going back to ready my boring friends facebook status’

  • kissmyass

    the monster’s grandson!!! if he is clever enough, better change his family surname soon……

    • Hongjian

      Mao wasnt any more monster compared to Zhu Yuanzhang, the founder of the Ming-Dynasty. And this guy had his bloodline and offspring in a very high position as the premier before Wen Jiabao.

      I’m talking about Zhu Rongji.

      At least Mao’s grandson is just a funny little guy from the National Defense University…

      • donscarletti

        I think you should not compare Zhu Rongji to Zhu Yongzhen or Mao Xinyu. I always got the impression he did a good job as Premier, he was very down to earth, he spoke in a very humble but charismatic way, he reformed a lot of corrupt and inefficient organizations and implemented economic policies that have lead to China’s success in recent years.

        Also, there are a lot of descendants of emperor Hongwu, part of the reason one aspires to become an emperor is one gets to screw many, many concubines. If you have any Chinese ancestry, you are probably descended from him, Li Yuan, Genghis Khan, Liu Bang, or more likely, all four.

        • Hongjian

          Zhu Rongji is a very cool guy.

          In a summit in europe, he was missing for an whole hour, and was finally found on the toilet, examining the water-saving flush-mechanism with full interest. He claimed that China needs stuff like this, so that billion liters of water can be spared when every household has something like this.

          Yes, he’s very down to earth and not an useless guy like Mao Xinyu, only good for comedy purpose.

          But it always boggles my mind when I think that he is a real descentant of the glorious Ming-Dynasty and its founding emperor Zhu Yuanzhang.
          So, If the Ming Dynasty was still in power today, Zhu Rongji would be the rightful emperor of the celestial kingdom.

          • donscarletti

            It was Australia were the toilet was dismantled, not Europe. Australia is built on low water usage since the continent is so dry.

            Also, yes, he would make a kick arse emperor.

  • Irvin

    If calligraphy is an art, he must be practicing the abstract version of this art.

    • kissmyass

      yes the art of hook up with pretty girl by grandfather’s bad reputation!!!

  • Epitope

    What is the meaning of the “号” after “毛泽东” (毛泽东号)? Or did I misread the character on the right of Mao’s name? What does this last character add to the overall meaning, why didn’t he simply write “毛泽东”?

    • Da Mao Houzi

      This is complex and very Chinese. 号 is often used after the names of boats as a name marker. If you see a name in China with 号 after it it is likely the name of a boat. It acts as a nominalizer for boat names. Mao was sometimes referenced as the Great Helmsman, leading his country out of a whirlpool of trouble. The characters 舵手, duòshǒu) and (艄公, shāogōng) can both be used for Helmsman and applied to Mao. His grandson is sometimes called “The Great Big Helmsman”, this is slightly derogatory of course. This has lead to the character being applied to his name as a post name marker ridiculing his size and referencing his grandfather. So the question of course is why would the Mao junior add 号 after his grandfathers name. First, it institutionalizes his grandfathers name and marks him as the Great Helmsman. Second it marks his grandfather as a number in a series, and in keeping with Mandarin grammar, an Absolute Quantitative Adjective (whole number) before a Countable Noun Indicator, or measure word, can be dropped if it is “one”. So his grandfather is 一号, or “Mao the first”, the first Helmsman, this by default makes fatty “三号”, or “Mao the third”, and also a Helmsman. So it speaks to his aspirations of future political aspirations by nominalizing his grandfather and the first helmsman in a lineage. This is an example of how “Chinese” has been labelled “inscutable”.
      Really, it is very clever, arrogant and forewarns of another idiot trying to lead the country.

      • mankouzanghua

        nice post! at once educational and entertaining.

      • Epitope

        Thank you, very interesting response!

  • barry

    Maybe he should be a doctor… oh wait he has a PhD

    If it was my job to write fan-mail and sign autographs, I too would have days when I wouldn’t give a shit and let my standards slip [and i have terrible handwriting.]

    loving his casual, boot-boy pic. Oh ya Mao

  • lulu

    this is horrible if mao sees it he is going to cry.

    let’s not talk about his appearance…… but his hand writing is worse than primary school kids. shame

  • larvin

    I guess his father is not Li Gang ;-)

  • Alikese

    “No matter how worthless Mao Xinyu is… depend on guanxi or become some chairman of some institution.”

    Err, yeah… He definitely didn’t depend on guanxi, nepotism and a famous name to become the youngest general in the history of the army and an adviser to the government.

    • Alikese

      Damnit, that should say “…Mao Xinyu is at least he didn’t… depend on…”

      I’ll go stand in the corner now.

    • Hongjian

      Dont think that he has any vital advisor functions within the CMC.

      His PhD is just in military science, and he doesent look like someone who liked wargames too much, if it’s anything besides Starcraft.

      So, yeah. Like one said before, China’s big enough to pay a bit more for the grandson of the dynasty-founder, even if he’s just a useless Fantong.

      • @Hongjian

        So much for communism.

        • Keep in mind, the State of PRC said they don’t have the money to feed Chinese veterans of the Korean War and Sino-Vietnamnese War, especially those who had life-long injuries as a result of these wars. I guess China is not big enough to have these men covered, just enough for this “Fantong”.

          • Hongjian

            It’s China’s imperial traditions all over here again.

            Members of the imperial family are always favored before anyone else.
            And in a confucianist system, the soldier is the least respected member of the society, no matter how much he contributed to the wellfare of the dynasty and empire.

            So, this is understandable from the cultural point of view.

      • Alikese

        We tried to pay GWB to stay away and play with baseball teams, but it didn’t work…

  • Tbh, his writings isnt that awfully bad…I see worse.
    That said, is Mao Xinyu an R-tard? That is subjective. He is a PH.D in military science and history. And according to him, ww2 is won by Stalin and Mao Zedong, with Stalin contributing the most, and Stalin followed straight after him in terms of contribution. So be your own judge about his intellect and validity of his PH.D.

    • Hongjian

      Well, Peng Dehuai endured enough pain and earned enough glory, that he could just react relaxed and cool with Mao and his whole history.

      After all, the credit of beating the US out of North Korea at the expense of Mao’s only healthy son, was not stolen by Mao.

      And seeing Deng Xiaoping, who was also quite a capable field-commander, being all cool with Mao, even though his son was crippled by the Red Guards, and not even saying anything remotely negative against Mao, would pretty much apply to Peng too.

      • @Hongjian

        Keep in mind there are many reasons Deng is not angry “publicly” at Mao due to political reasons. Criticizing PRC’s “supposedly” founder would have enormous consequences to the authority of the CCP and a smart man like Deng will definitely know this. Who knows what he feel about Mao privately?

        And during the cultural revolution, Peng did had a lot of harsh criticisms on Mao’s character and policies before he was purged by the red guards. But again, everything about how they will react and feel in real life is only to our speculation.

        • Hongjian

          I’ve read an interview with one of Deng’s daughters sometimes, where she stated that Deng had privately never voiced anything negative about Mao once, but was always respecting him for what he was; a founding emperor who made a new dynasty.
          And this pretty much fit in with his famous 70-30 ratio about Mao too.

          And reading his political history, I cannot believe that he was too critical regarding Mao, since he was a strong supporter for lots of Mao’s disastrous policies, like the GLF and Hundred Flower Campaign, at the beginning.
          Only difference is, unlike other more fanatic supporters, Deng, being a intelligent guy he was, acknowledged the negative outcome and revised his opinion regarding those policies.
          But he was also quite honourable, so that he wont turn his back completely away from his old beliefs and away from Mao, even though he systematically ‘destroyed’ nearly every ideological foundation of Maoism after he rose up as paramount leader.

          • @Hongjiang

            I think you missed out one very important fact. The entire Deng family are members of the CCP. The same reason their father would not voice any dislike about Mao for political reasons, the second generation also had their interest in protect for not denouncing Mao.

            One of Deng Xiaoping’s greatest challenge when trying to reform PRC when he took power is how to address Mao Zedong and his policies; so that his reforms can be carry out without hurting the CCP’s authority and in turn, his authority. It is no question that Mao’s policies had to be criticize for him to reform the country. So in order to protect Mao’s image, he must make sure in his speeches, he must make Mao sound like he have a high moral character.

            A lot of CCP members during cultural revolution support Mao’s policies in order to save their own asses and Deng was not an exception.

            In many accounts, writers had stated that Zhou Enlai had to knok-tow to Mao to save his own life.

            Moreover, Mao’s famous partner in crime during the cultural revolution, Lin Biao wrote a letter to Chiang Kai-Shek begging for forgiveness and hope that he can deflect back to his side, when his relationship with Mao deteriorated (Lin was a student of Chiang before the two parted ways). This really tells you how low of a moral character Mao Zedong had, Lin Biao would rather write a letter to one of his greatest enemy that try to reconcile with Mao.

            Even Peng Dehuai at first support Mao’s policies so he doesn’t get purged. Yet, when he returned to his ancestral home and see it in complete ruin and his fellow countrymen are dying, he took up the courage and try to convince Mao to undo his policies. And everyone knew what happened, he was purged by the Red Guards.

            Even till today, there are people who praised Hitler, Stalin, of Imperial Japan’s intentions as noble and just. Perhaps to a selected few, they did good things since the make their lives better through the suffering and misery of a much larger majority.

      • kissmyass

        @ Hongjian
        i guess you read too many communist brainwash news and history books….think with your own head not others’ !!!
        whatever it is, Mao is the “symbol” of CPR, any one in the government scared the ass off to criticism……
        well wise people see the true history!!

  • Wiwi

    Wait a sec, there are two pics where Mao xinyu and his wife are holding two kids, does that mean he has more than one? I thought we have some sort of policy .. oh it’s called ONE CHILD POLICY?!

    • Alikese

      More than one child guerilla! The One Child Policy is a fundamental national policy!

      • I guess that’s their contribution to Mao Zedong’s “perpetual revolution”….

        But seriously, there’s always the chance that both Mao Xinyu and Liu Bin come from one-child families. It seems like he did, at least. The One-Child Policy makes an exception when both parents grew up as “only children”; then they may have two.

        • And in other news, I wasn’t able to post this comment (tried three times) until I turned on my VPN due to javascript or cookies not being turned on/allowed (they already are), starting 3:40 PM Beijing Time.

          Is this the start of Chinasmack being blocked just as Chinahush is? Perhaps.

          • Joe

            In Beijing here. comment work fine sans VPN

          • Good to know, maybe just a hiccup, then. Or perhaps the Nanjing ISPs are getting up in a hootenanny, as they are so often wont to do. With regards to censorship, it seems to be one of the more hard-line districts.

  • eattot

    this is called karma.

  • dim mak

    Lose some goddamn weight already

  • Bob

    I’m not sure “marvel” is the right word to use for the reactions. I think I would have chosen “are disgusted by” or “are horrified by.” “Marvel” implies wonder or awe.

    • anon

      You’re probably taking this post too seriously. I’m pretty sure “marvel” was meant sarcastically.

  • Hypocrisy

    Great job Da Mao Houzi !!! Wish there are more commentators like you.

    As for Mao Xinyu, why don’t people leave him and his family alone !!!! He is a decent person and there is a great lack of that virtue in this country and in this world. He is decent and honest. Don’t bag him for that. His hand writing may be terrible but why do you care? If you want to belittle or mock Mao1, then do it but don’t take it out on others, including his decendents. As for the Phd and 4 stars he got, well, there are idiots who want to give them so go after them and not Mao Xinyu. Leave him alone.

    • Not sure what information you are privy to that indicate his decency or honesty, or that “idiots” want to give him honors. Care to share?

      He has made some statements in the past that have opened up up to public scrutiny and ridicule, you have to admit. Given that he is Mao1’s grandson, it’s natural that he would support his grandfather; given how controversial Mao1 is, it’s natural for others to examine and critique the grandson.

    • Mr. Mao Xinyu had been widely criticized by many (even members of the CCP) for shamelessly putting himself into public spotlight in comparison to other members of the Mao family. And if you want to be a media sensation, it is only natural you will receive praise/ criticisms based on your actions. As far as we are concern, Mao Xinyu’s comments and actions had done nothing but destroy his personal, family, the CCP’s and to a certain extent the “Chinese” image (if you had ever watch his interviews, you will notice this person know nothing about his field (that is to say, know little about history or military science despite his Ph. D in the two fields).

      Mao had another granddaughter too, and while she was too irrationally proud of her grandfather’s “accomplishments”. Her talks do have some intellect and she is not a “media whore” like Mao Xinyu. As a result, it is completely irrational to complain about the public criticisms on Mr. Mao Xinyu, especially it is him who bought it upon himself.

  • Oh, did I see that right? The guy has two kids?
    Hmm… someone is breaking laws here and should pay big fine.

  • fmstlr

    Funny how people jump at the chance to criticize something that lacks authenticated or is clearly fake. They project their unresolved negative feelings towards the grandfather upon this guy. Besides, calligraphy is an art/hobby, and it has no real life practical value. A person’s handwriting has no bearing on the intelligence nor the character of the person. Case in point, have you seen the handwriting of your doctor?

  • Cee

    Mao Xinyu is too stupid, with stupid face, stupid calligraphy, and stupid opinion that Maoist Thoughts are great and eternity, and he has claimed that all the Chinese college students should learn it as a required courses. So f***… isn’t that a confine of Chinese people’s thoughts. How could Mao Xinyu be a youngest general who ‘ve never been abroad to see the whole real world… pathetic for him!! Pathetic for the Party…
    BTW, to MaoXinyu, do you understand the english? Have you ever learnt any foreign language?? Stupid you…凸

    • Anon

      Take it easy on the guy, this stretches the limits of patronage and nepotism though. Parliament and the military are somewhat different, so lets hope the ‘ethical dignity’ of the nation is carefully upheld.

      But let loose again if he becomes Prime Minister or President, the defensibility would be too painfully obvious then. The more generations apart, the less nepotistic.

      Better yet, never at all so that whatever value in Chairman Mao’s reputation will not be eroded by accusations of oligarchy. There are many things the Maos could stand for, I’m sure something outside of government sector will turn up . . .

    • Jaci

      Wow, I am sorry that obviously you and a lot of these other people have gotten picked on in the past but do you really need to turn this on someone else? Unless you know this individual personally then you shouldn’t be so quick to judge. Handwriting or knowing other languages does not make you “smarter”. I strongly advise you to learn more words out of your own dictionary if you dare to try and insult the intelligence of a stranger. “Stupid”? Pathetic for you is how I feel. All of you who choose to insult a man that you don’t know need to open your eyes up and look at all the things wrong with yourselves. No one is perfect!

  • Robert

    Mao wasn’t a good guy. He merely got a job done. Hitler and Stalin did too. Causing unity is great and all, but if you killed anyone not united to get there, is that good?

  • pluto9964

    His grandfather can use his foot and still write better than him.
    and your english is disgraceful

  • Senor Boogie Woogie

    The only reason this man is being dissed is that he is fat. If he was half his size, he might have a leadership role. But being a Mao, and having an iron rice bowl job and be able to eat, drink wine, smoke and gamble is a goal of many a Chinese man (and western men too!) I think his Chinese writing is fine, and very legible. I can read it, and I am not Chinese.

    I think that The Little Red Book should be studied by students, if nothing for history sake, and to see another Mao before that guy becomes a dictator, fucks everything else, makes life miserable and reducing everyone to a diet of tree bark and chou dofu.

    • jack

      a chinese obama

  • E Puff

    The only thing I can say about mao zedong and his descendants… UGLY ON THE INSIDE, UGLY ON THE OUTSIDE.

    A person born unattractive can be beautiful by the spirit of his soul, which makes his natural attractiveness imperceptible. A person who is ugly on the inside will be ugly all over, in their development, in their spirit, in their outward appearance, in their thoughts, and lack of accomplishments. The fact that this will be passed down till these descendants are nothing is inevitable.

    • jack

      if you were not there, in those times, how can you state you would be any different from mao, perhaps his truths were transgenic, leading china to higher magnitudes of literacy.

      one thing is obvious, if humanity continues to fill the world with our species as we are doing, soon we will have exhaust our resources, denature the entire earth, unable to change, allowing self serving agents to rule us, we will perish in our orbit around galactic center, we have abandoned science-spiritually replacing it with racist classist commercial criminal gangs, dynasties, living nasty lives of physical deviant physical pleasure, insuring a world of; slavery, servants, hirelings, poverty survives to serve them.

  • David Sequeira

    As I think back to everything in my life I wish I would have done differently,
    I can see that the reason why I didn’t do it right the first time is because I was misled by people who were being dishonest !

    And now, when the trouble with the whole world is: “No Time for Honesty”,
    guess who is really our only honest hope for an honest future !!

    Who else?


  • Pingback: What Mao’s Grandson Reveals About Modern China | Business Insider Australia()

  • jack

    people would be little different from each other had they lived each others lives.

    Only Truth survives time, which changes all things.

    Humanity is still in preliterate stages, compared to our future when information systems allow us to find direction with access to all known variables to guide us.

    The ” One Book ” information revolution is upon us, will we use it in an effort to arise each day in an effort to do the right things, or continue to allow the frailty of human opinion to guide us, making decisions without access to the variables, cling ing onto positions of power rendered obsolete in the face of instrumentation that would guide us into a better would were decisions are made using data bases that contain variables humanity is incapable of understanding, given instrumentation like IBM;s latest mainframe ” Watson ” capable of infinite variables using a self sorting empirical matrix that puts the known variables into a single math platform we are capable of accessing to find direction, that, if used in ongoing modernization of government would disable criminality as we elevate our magnitudes of lteracy, continually rewriting all job description, exponentially increases in quality of life and future instrumentation taking humanity into realms we cab only imagine, ruled as we are by human opinion of people possessed with the demon of ignorance, live self serving lives continuing to divide the classes of man, have abandoned nature replacing it with worthless fashion and predatory law in a primative world of self serving clans

  • jack

    in the spirit of truth

  • Paul Rain

    As funny as this is.. I think we all know there’s a bloody good reason for this.

    Mao didn’t grow up writing with a ballpoint.

  • Washington Bullets

    His handwriting looks like mine…

  • tim

    all i see is a fat ass corrupted commie. much like his grandfather mao ze dung shit