Seek truth from facts

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Seek truth from facts


《漢書 (Book of Han)·河間獻王德傳》[1]

"Seek truth from facts" (simplified Chinese: 实事求是; traditional Chinese: 實事求是; pinyin: shí shì qiú shì) is a historically established expression (chengyu) that first appeared in the Book of Han. Originally, it described an attitude toward study and research.

In modern Chinese culture[edit]

It became a key element of Maoism, first quoted by Mao Zedong during a speech at the Sixth National Congress of the Chinese Communist Party in 1938, in reference to pragmatism. Mao had probably remembered it as being the inscription on his alma mater, Hunan's First Teachers Training School.[2] Beginning in 1978, it was further promoted by Deng Xiaoping as a central ideology of Socialism with Chinese characteristics, and applied to economic and political reforms thereafter.


  1. ^ "河間獻王德傳". Book of Han. 111. 
  2. ^ Terrill, Ross (Copyright 1980), Harper & Row, p.28.