CHINA: Revisionist Music

Once again, music was the focus of ideological attack in China last week. This time, however, the object of scorn was not such decadent bourgeois composers as Beethoven and Schubert, but a Chinese opera with the ponderous title Three Ascents Up Peach Mountain. Performed in Peking in January, the new opera initially provoked nobody's wrath. But now People's Daily has castigated it as an "outrageous attack" on Mao Tse-tung's revolutionary philosophy. The party organ charged that Peach Mountain was a remake of a 1966 opera that ignored class struggle while promoting the Confucianist...