Chinese Name: 劳动节节
English Name: International Workers’ Day, May Day
Time & Duration: 1 May
International Workers’ Day 劳动节 is a national holiday in more than 80 countries around the world. The festival is held on 1 May every year. It is a festival shared by working people all over the world. In July 1889, the Second International, led by Engels 恩格斯, held a congress in Paris. The meeting passed a resolution stipulating that the international labourers would hold a parade on May 1, 1890, and decided to designate May 1 as International Workers’ Day.
The Government Affairs Council of the Central People’s Government made a decision in December 1949 to determine May 1 as Labor Day. Every Chinese can enjoy a five-day holiday on May Day.
The origin of the International Workers’ Day
In the 19th century, many countries such as the United States and Europe gradually developed from capitalism to imperialism. In order to stimulate rapid economic development and extract more surplus value to maintain this high-speed capitalist machine, capitalists continued to increase labour hours. and labour-intensive methods to brutally exploit workers.
In the United States, workers work 14 to 16 hours a day, sometimes as long as 18 hours, but the wages are very low. Heavy class oppression aroused great anger among the proletarians. They know that the only way to win the conditions for survival is to unite and fight the capitalists through strike movements. The conditions of the strike proposed by the workers were to implement an eight-hour working day.
In 1877, the first national strike in American history began. The working class took to the streets to demonstrate, asking the government to improve labour and living conditions, shortening working hours and implementing an eight-hour workday. However, some capitalists simply ignored it. This law is just a piece of paper. The workers are still living in dire straits and being tortured by the capitalists.
The unbearable workers decided to push the struggle for the right to life to a new climax, preparing to hold a larger-scale strike movement. Then came the tragedy of the “Hay Market Riot”. In the subsequent sentencing, eight anarchists were charged with murder, four were hanged, and one committed suicide in prison.
To commemorate this great labour movement and to protest the sentence that followed, workers’ protests were held around the world. These events became the precursors to “International Labour Day”. After a hard and bloody struggle, the victory was finally won. On July 14, 1889, the Socialist Congress convened by Marxists from various countries was grandly opened in Paris, France. The General Assembly unanimously agreed to designate May 1 as a common holiday for the international proletariat.
This decision received an immediate and positive response from workers all over the world. Since then, on this day, working people from all over the world will gather and march to celebrate, and public holidays will be held. Subsequently, the Government Affairs Council of the Central People’s Government designated May 1 as the statutory Labor Day in December 1949.
The meaning of International Workers’ Day
The significance of International Labor Day is that labourers have won their legitimate rights and interests through struggle and with a tenacious, heroic and unyielding spirit of struggle. It is a historic progress of human civilization and democracy, and this is the essence of May Day Labor Day.
Labour is not only about people’s health and wisdom, but also about people’s happiness and beauty. Labour enriches our lives, and labour trains and makes us human. The greatness of man lies in his ability to work, his ability to work, and his love of work. A life without labour is meaningless, and a life that reflects labour is full of happiness.
The Chinese nation has always been proud of labour, and is a nation that advocates labour, is hard-working, industrious and brave. After the founding of the People’s Republic of China, legal and institutional protections were given to the rights and interests of labourers. Since the founding of the People’s Republic of China, the hard work of countless workers from all walks of life has made the motherland’s economy prosperous and strong today.
The International Workers’ Day is one of the long-awaited holidays for the Chinese people. In order to welcome the arrival of this holiday, the majority of merchants have started discounts and promotions. In addition, for workers or students, the May Day holiday will undoubtedly help them get a break from their busy lives.
Since the May 1st holiday is a five-day-long holiday, it creates favourable conditions for those who have always wanted to travel but suffer from a lack of time. Every May Day, various tourist attractions are crowded with people, which greatly promotes the development of China’s tourism industry.