||This thesis is based on an ethnographic research in Mingshan Village, Miluo, Hunan, South China. Qu Yuan Temple, which was built in the Qing dynasty, is located here. The research focuses on such local cultural items as Qu Yuan, Qu Yuan Temple, Dragon Boat Festival and the dragon boat race. I explored the changes of these elements with the change of the social and political context, and also studied the different meanings of them between of state and local society. These cultural items mainly had only local significance during the Republican Period (1911-1949), but they have a much wider meaning in contemporary China. In Miluo, many activities concerning these elements have emerged since the 1980s. They are all in the name of “commemorating Qu Yuan” or “developing patriotism”. Patriotic education has always been an important part of Chinese Communist Party’s political culture since 1949, when it came into power. After the end of Cultural Revolution (1966-1976), in order to fill the vacuum of ideology and confront the moral and ethical looseness, patriotism, or patriotic nationalism, was used as the ideological tool to unite the whole country. So, “patriotism” legitimates activities such as commemorating Qu Yuan, held by the local government or the cultural and educational units. My field data show that the activities for commemorating Qu Yuan were colluded performance of local government, local elite and all kinds of media, the theme of which is “developing patriotism.” That is to say, “patriotism” has provided local society with a language to express themselves. All the activities, which are related to Qu Yuan, Qu Yuan Temple, the Dragon Boat Festival, dragon boat race, and even some other activities, which were formerly not related to these elements, are now conducted in the name of patriotism. Behind the screen of performance of patriotism, all the groups are in pursuit of their own agenda. However, this language excludes the common villagers in local society. The daily life, and even the Dragon Boat Festival in Mingshan village have little connection with Qu Yuan. Even nowadays, when Miluo and the upper level government are creating the connection between Qu Yuan and Miluo, Qu Yuan and the local Dragon Boat Festival, the life and festival in local society has little changed, that is because the language of commemorating Qu Yuan and developing patriotism, as well as the activities expressing this language, are controlled by the government and the local cultural elite, to the exclusion of local people.