National Museum of China reflects on four decades of reform and opening-up

By Luo Yunzhou Source:Global Times Published: 2018/11/15 18:18:40

Visitors explore the Grand Reform exhibition at the National Museum of China in Beijing on Wednesday. Photo: Li Hao/ GT

Visitors explore the Grand Reform exhibition at the National Museum of China in Beijing on Wednesday. Photo: Li Hao/ GT

After a long wait of 50 days, Beijing's National Museum of China reopened to the public on Tuesday with a new exhibition celebrating the 40th anniversary of China's reform and opening-up.

Grand Reform, which is divided into six sections, showcases the changes China has undergone over the past four decades and notes the most outstanding accomplishments of each decade.

Covering all facets, from politics and economics to culture and the military, the exhibition is massive in scale as it encompasses the entire first floor of the museum.

Although the exhibition has plenty of floor space, it wasn't easy to navigate around on opening day since it was packed to the brim with visitors, some of whom had traveled a long way to see it.

"It blew my mind when I first arrived here," Zhang Shumei, a visitor from East China's Anhui Province, told the Global Times as she admired displays dedicated to rural reform.

"I traveled here just for the exhibition. I think it is super great. Our country is great!"

To better display the changes that have taken place over the years, the exhibition makes use of a variety of means to make an impression on visitors.

Each section is divided into smaller units that have their own distinctive style. For instance, the unit dedicated to the Communist Party of China's anti-corruption efforts is a round semi-circle room that invokes images of the sickle in the Party's emblem. Another room dedicated to landscaping is green in color and filled with tree-shaped decorations.

Large screens have been placed throughout the exhibition to show off videos depicting the evolution of cities over the past 40 years of urbanization.

One such video had attracted the attention of a large group of visitors, who had taken out their cell phones to record it.

"Look, that's our home!" one man said excitedly to his son as changing images of Shenzhen in South China's Guangdong Province, the home of China's first special economic zone, flashed on the screen.

"Do you see how much it changed before you were born?!"

Moving from one section to another is like walking through a time tunnel that allows one to experience first-hand the multiple successes that China has achieved since the reform and opening-up policy was first adopted in 1978.

"I felt quite excited and a sense of familiarity as I looked at the navigation equipment for naval ships and space ships, such as the Jiaolong deep-sea manned submersible and AG600 amphibious aircraft, since this is closely related to my major. I can't stop dreaming about the day that I will be able to make my own contributions to China's space program," Xia Fanhao, a third-year student from Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics, told the Global Times.

Xia's classmate Zhang Yunong also had a hard time containing his excitement, but for a different reason.

"The exhibition includes comprehensive information about the Communist Party of China, everything from its birth to the latest ideologies of [Chinese] President Xi Jinping," Zhang said.

"I'm a probationary Party member, so I think this information will help me when deciding my future goals. I have learned a lot from all these historical documents and advanced displays."

Newspaper headline: Grand celebration

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