Forum carries the Olympic torch for cultural communication
By Tao Zihui  ·  2022-11-25  ·   Source: Web Exclusive

Participants from China and abroad shared their interpretations of the convergence of ancient civilizations and the spirit of Olympism at a forum held online and offline, highlighting the humanistic Olympic values of peace, unity, and respect for diversity.

The Capital Civilizational Development Foundation and Civilization Magazine launched the first Tiantan Forum on Dialogue Between Civilizations in Beijing on November 25, promoting the Olympic spirit and people-to-people exchanges the world over.

November 25, 2022 marked the 130th anniversary of the speech given by Pierre de Coubertin, known as the “Olympic Manifesto,” in which he outlined a vision to revive the ancient Greek athletic tradition in a modern way.

The 14-page speech, originally delivered in French, is rich in content, covering the history of world sports in the 19th century and describing the adventurous side of the human spirit, thus being the earliest and the most authoritative document of the Olympics as we know them.

The Olympic spirit is still very much alive today, providing an opportunity for both China and France to renew their cultural and athletic ties, Ambassador of France to China Laurent Bili told the forum via video link. Beijing held the Olympic Winter Games in February 2022 and Paris will host the 2024 Summer Games.

The Olympic concept, which spans across history, even after wars and social changes, should always be in line with the development of the times, Claude Azéma, a member of the French Olympic Committee, told the forum. Azéma believes China has proved its ability to host large-scale events and China and France should work together in this regard.

“It’s a fusion of cultures,” Wang Yiwei, Director of the Institute of International Affairs at Renmin University of China, told the forum.

“During the Renaissance, brilliant minds from Europe drew inspiration from Chinese civilization and created modern masterpieces,” Wang continued. “China-EU cooperation through the modern Olympic movement may spark a new Renaissance,” he said.

“Whether in the ancient arena or at the modern Olympics, as long as people come together, communication will happen,” Qin Lu, professor at the National Academy of Governance, said. “Communication brings respect, respect brings understanding and understanding brings friendship. The Olympic value represents not only ancient Greece but also our modern world,” Qiu said.

Participants also encourage the younger generations to promote the Olympic spirit and culture through social media.

Division in today’s world, amplified by media platforms old and new alike and their ability to promptly transmit information and exacerbate controversy, proves to be an ongoing challenge, and sport unfortunately is not exempted from that, according to Gregory P. Gilligan, Chairman of the American Chamber of Commerce in China.

However, when controversy and dispute bleed onto a multilateral and multi-polar platform such as the Olympic Games, the controversy has yet been unable to subsume the Games,” Gilligan told the forum.

In other words, the Olympic spirit has time and again met its lofty aspirations, allowing countries to work through their differences in the respect of cultural congress and athletic competition, he added.

Copyedited by Elsbeth van Paridon

Comment to

China Focus
Special Reports
About Us
Contact Us
Advertise with Us
Partners:   |   China Today   |   China Pictorial   |   People's Daily Online   |   Women of China   |   Xinhua News Agency   |   China Daily
CGTN   |   China Tibet Online   |   China Radio International   |   Global Times   |   Qiushi Journal
Copyright Beijing Review All rights reserved 京ICP备08005356号 京公网安备110102005860