Author | Translator: Guo Ningshi from ChinaInternet Information Center，Hubei Business Division
Reviewed by: Zhang Shuo, former director and researcher of the Chu Culture Research Institute of the Hubei Academy of Social Sciences,Vice President of Chinese Culture Promotion Society，Vice Chairman of the Hubei Jingchu Culture Research Association
English proofreading: Zhang Yuyang，Tian Yuanyuan
Yu divided the nine states, and Jingzhou began to exist.
Jingzhou City is located in the central southern part of Hubei Province, in the hinterland of the Jianghan Plain, with a land area of 14100 square kilometers and a total population of 6.37 million. It has jurisdiction over 8 counties and cities, including Jingzhou District, Shashi District, Jiangling County, Songzi City, Gong'an County, Shishou City, Jianli City, and Honghu City, as well as three functional zones: Jingzhou Economic Development Zone, Jinan Cultural and Tourism Zone, and Jingzhou High tech Zone. In 2022, the city achieved a regional GDP of 300.861 billion yuan, a year-on-year increase of 5.1%, ranking fourth in the province in total.
Jingzhou is one of the first national historical and cultural cities announced by the State Council, and is the birthplace of Chu culture. It has a history of 5000 years of city building and 500 years of capital building. In the first year of King Wen of Chu (689 BC), the state of Chu moved its capital to Ying (now Jinancheng, Jingzhou District), and after that, 20 Chu kings established their capital in Jingzhou for 411 years. The ancestors of Chu achieved the historical achievements of the Five Heroes of the Spring and Autumn Period and the Seven Heroes of the Warring States period with Jingzhou as the center, and created a unique and brilliant Chu culture that is comparable to ancient Greek Athenian culture.
Chu culture, named after the state of Chu, is a regional culture formed during the Zhou Dynasty. The so-called Chu culture refers to all material and spiritual cultures with their own characteristics created by the Chu people in the Chu region during the existence of the Chu state. She first emerged in the Jianghan region. The Chu people have a spirit of looking at the world and striving for governance, forming a unique vision of seeking from others and drawing on their strengths, while seeking from themselves and creating a unique style; Formed an open culture and inclusive spirit that embraces all rivers and is inclusive.
When it comes to the formation of Chu culture, it is necessary to mention the establishment and class composition of the Chu state.
The state of Chu was enfeoffed during the reign of King Cheng of Zhou and was destroyed by Qin in 223 BC. It lasted for over 800 years before and after its establishment (approximately 1040-223BC); The Chu people include the Chu royal family, upper ruling groups, and lowerclass people. The lowerclass Chu people originated from the northern Huaxia branch, so their typical core should be centered around the Central Plains culture; The lower class people are mainly local indigenous people, which is the local indigenous culture. Chu culture is formed on the basis of the original Central Plains culture, with the gradual localization of the Mi surname Chu culture and the gradual Central Plains localization of the local indigenous culture. The two are closely related and constantly approaching each other. Therefore, Chu culture has the characteristics of both the northern central plains culture and the indigenous culture of Chu, which is a unique"Chu culture" based on The Two Cultures and different from The Two Cultures at the same time.
After the establishment of the Chu regime, with the Central Plains civilization as the main body, Chu culture was also deeply influenced by the barbarian civilization in the south. Irrational mysticism and romance gradually emerged under the light of rational brilliance. And these two elements are deeply reflected in the literary field in Qu Yuan's works"Li Sao" and"Chu Ci".
The ancestors of Chu, centered around Jingzhou, created a Chu culture that could be compared to the Central Plains culture of the Yellow River Basin and the ancient Greek Athenian culture of the same period. Chu culture is the most precious historical and cultural heritage in Jingzhou and even the entire Hubei Province. It is the most valuable, contemporary, core competitive, and globally influential historical and cultural resource.
The report of the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China pointed out that we should"promote cultural confidence and self-improvement, and create new brilliance in socialist culture". Holding the first Chu Culture Festival to promote Chu culture is an important action to enhance cultural awareness, strengthen cultural confidence, and inherit and promote Jingchu culture; It is an important platform for showcasing the image of Jingzhou and promoting open exchange and cooperation with the outside world, which will better empower and add color to the construction of Jingzhou as a high-quality development demonstration zone in the Jianghan Plain.
The"new scroll" of Chu culture is slowly unfolding on this land.
(Source:Jingzhou Municipal People's Government, Jingzhou Daily, etc.)