Dancers perform during the opening ceremony of the 2008 International Confucius Cultural Festival in Qufu, east China's Shandong Province, Sept. 27, 2008. [Xinhua]
The 3rd Awarding Ceremony of the Confucius Prize for Literacy was held in the hometown of Confucius on Saturday, together with the opening ceremony of the 2008 China (Qufu) International Confucius Cultural Festival. The prize aims to award government bodies, non-government organizations and individuals for their outstanding contribution in the area of universal education while the festival is to commemorate Confucius (551 BC-479 BC), a great thinker, educator and philosopher in ancient China. The festival kicked off with a grand performance here on Saturday and a string of academic and commercial programs will also be included in the following days. The philosophy of Confucius has exerted profound influence on Chinese culture and cultures of other countries.