What's new to celebrate the God of Literature in Foshan's Chancheng
Foshan China 2024-03-13 09:29

On March 9, the intangible cultural heritage folklore "Birthday of the Men Cheong (God of Literature)" in Foshan's Nanzhuang Town took place in front of the Men Cheong Tower in Kongjia Village.

The tradition of worshipping Men Cheong has been observed in the Kongjia Village since the Qing Dynasty, spanning over 230 years. In 2021, this tradition was listed in the intangible cultural heritage project catalog of Chancheng District. In 2023, it was further recognized as one of the top ten folk activities in Chancheng District.

Tradition Meets Modernity: Chancheng Celebrates the Folklore with New Flair

The event showcased a fusion of traditional and contemporary performances, including lion dances, ancient text recitations, classical dances, and scholar banquet tastings, offering participants a deep dive into Kongjia Village's rich cultural heritage of Confucianism.

As the birthplace of Lingnan Confucian culture, Kongjia Village has a long-standing legacy, recognized for its cultural significance. The "Birthday of the Men Cheong (God of Literature)" Folklore, observed annually on the third day of the second lunar month, continues to draw crowds, symbolizing centuries-old traditions upheld by residents and neighboring communities.

Innovative Experiences: Immersive Confucian Culture Vibe

Compared to previous years, this year's event featured a more diverse array of activities, transforming traditional folklore into cultural IP. This allowed attendees to not only celebrate the festival but also gain a deeper understanding of the culture and experience the allure of Chinese traditional culture.

After participating in the solemn rituals of the folklore, attendees could embark on a guided tour of the ancient village, engaging in immersive theatrical activities, witnessing the grandeur of the First Writing Ceremony, and savoring the scholar's banquet.

The event also featured outstanding representatives from Foshan's martial arts community, dressed as No.1 scholar, providing in-depth interpretations of the cultural significance. Through vivid performances, they illustrated the journey from scholar to imperial examination laureate, adding a unique charm to the event.

Another new addition to this year's Men Cheong Festival was the "First Writing Ceremony." Inside the Peitang Academy, Zhang Guiguang, Chairman of the Guangdong Calligraphers Association, led children through a series of rituals, allowing them to experience the charm of Confucian culture firsthand.

In 2023, Chancheng integrated the 'Birthday of the Men Cheong (God of Literature)' Folklore, Flower Market, Foshan Ancient Town Lantern Festival, Crossing Tongji Bridge, Lantern Festival with Dragon and Lion Dance, Travel Zhuzi Street, Foshan Ancestral Temple Fair, Tapo Temple Fair, Qiuse Parade, and Cantonese Opera Festival" as the top ten folk activities. At the district level, there's strengthened coordination, aiming to enhance both the connotation and form of Chancheng's folk culture. Through collaboration with various towns, streets, travel agencies, and other entities, Chancheng is creating a brand for folk cultural tourism, attracting more visitors nationwide to experience a year-round array of folk wonders in Chancheng.


Revisor丨Eddie, Eleanor

Photo | Foshan News and Media Center