(For whatever that's worth).
Suppose you take your kids to a performance of Tchaikovsky's *Swan Lake* by cutting edge European or American performers, in the hopes of interesting them in "culture."
If you're lucky, you might encounter something like this:
...where the dancing is at least reasonably competent, and the "transgressive" element is limited to the cygnets being all male.
But if you take them to a performance of *Swan Lake* by the best Chinese performers...well (starting at the same place)...behold:
Well, sure, you say: the frogs are cute. But, I say: don't stop watching there. 'Cause if you do, you'll miss absolutely staggering things.
* * * * *
So have you seen it all the way through, now? And do you now see why China will inherit the Earth?
It's because the Chinese now have more respect - and more *creative* respect - for the great achievements of Western culture than do the cultural powers-that-be in the West itself. They are appropriating the best we have achieved, and enriching it with their own genius - while we can barely bring ourselves to celebrate the same achievements without agonizing, in the next breath, over this or that insensitivity to this or that aggrieved group.
The Chinese are not much given to agonizing over their insensitivity to aggrieved groups. And they are not ashamed of their past - even when they ought to be. But they know accomplishment when they see it. And that is why they (and not the meek) will inherit the Earth.
* * * * *
I fully expect to live to see the day when one is more likely to witness a great performance of *Tristan und Isolde* in Shanghai than in Bayreuth.