“When I returned to my hometown during the Chinese New Year, I saw earth-shaking changes in the appearance of the village. The previously dilapidated earthen houses are now replaced by bright buildings, and a new primary school and a service center have been built in the village,” said Wen Jun, dean of the School of Social Development at East China Normal University.
Wen was excited when talking about his survey in Fuyan Village, Hunan Province, during the Chinese New Year. “Nowadays, the people’s lives are getting better and happier, and they have increasing confidence in a better life in the future.”
In the past 10 years of the new era, Chinese Communists have applied a people-centered development philosophy, uniting and leading the Chinese people to constantly strive for a better life in terms of both material and non-material wealth. This has ensured a more lasting sense of fulfillment, happiness, and security for the people.
Since 2016, Yan Xueqin, deputy director of the Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology at Xinjiang Normal University, has been carrying out research on targeted poverty alleviation and rural vitalization in the southern part of northwest China’s Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region. In so doing, Yan has witnessed the historical process of how some severely impoverished areas were able to eliminate extreme poverty.
When asked about his research outcomes, Yan sent us a photo taken at the “vegetable basket” production base in Xinjiang’s Shufu County for the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area in south China. Bright pink dragon fruits are eye-catching in the photo.
According to Yan, the production base in the county has received pairing assistance from Guangzhou in Guangdong Province over the past two years. The new model of growing Guangdong vegetables and fruits in Xinjiang to supply the southern province has upgraded local industries and increased farmers’ income.
The term xiaokang, which means moderate prosperity, can be traced back to the ancient Chinese document The Book of Songs, crystallizing Chinese people’s aspiration for a better life for thousands of years. No dynasty in Chinese history achieved the building of a moderately prosperous society in all respects and the eradication of absolute poverty. However, the CPC did achieve it, as General Secretary of the CPC Central Committee Xi Jinping declared the achievement at a ceremony marking the Party’s centenary in 2021.
Mo Qiyang, dean of the School of Foreign Languages and Cultures at Chongqing University, said that a better life is the people’s most fundamental and simplest wish. Today, a moderately prosperous society has been built, as all counties have access to highways, and villages are connected to paved roads. “We are now marching in confident strides toward the second
centenary goal of building China into a great modern socialist country in all respects,” Mo said.
The elimination of extreme poverty and the realization of a moderately prosperous society have laid a solid foundation for people’s better life, said He Zhonghua, a professor from the School of Philosophy and Social Development at Shandong University. Noting the large quantity and great variety of commodities in the market now, He said the vitality of the enormous Chinese market was unimaginable a few decades ago when commodities were supplied upon presentation of coupons.
Wu Ying, deputy director of the Research Center for the Theoretical System of Socialism with Chinese Characteristics of Yunnan Province, said that the current consumption ecosystem integrating the digital economy and the real economy is taking shape at a faster speed, bringing great convenience to urban and rural residents, and the real experience of a better life is within reach.
People’s lives are getting better and better, which is reflected in multiple dimensions and aspects. Wang Hongwei, director of the Research and Consulting Center for Project Evaluation and Strategic Planning at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, believes that a “good life” is a relative concept with varying standards among people in different regions and industries. In view of the actual national conditions in which the rural population accounts for a large proportion in China, ensuring that the majority of rural residents have no worries about food and clothing is the basic standard for a “good life.”
At the same time, a “good life” is a dynamic concept, Wang continued. With continuous economic and social development, people’s needs will keep improving, and the standard of a “good life” will change accordingly. This profoundly reflects that the great progress of China in the new era is acknowledged and expected by the people, and fully demonstrates the CPC’s glorious mission is always closely connected with the pursuit of the Chinese nation.