Kuzhutang Village

Wu Han (1909-1969), originally named Wu Chunhan with a courtesy name of Chenbo, was born in Kuzhutang Village, Shangxi Town, Yiwu City , Zhejiang Province. When he was 11 years old, he read the “Comments by an Emperor”, which introduced him to the study of history. In 1931, he was admitted exceptionally by the Tsinghua University. In 1932 he was engaged as director of the culture and history column of the “Tsinghua Week”. In 1933, he acted as the editor and head of layout in the “Benefitting World -- History” in Tianjin. In September 1937, Wu Han was engaged as a culture and history professor by the Yunnan University, and in that period he published some valuable articles including the “Examination of Military, Political and Social Systems”, “Agricultural Officials in Ming Dynasty and Others”, “Record of Ming Dynasty” and “Development of Han Nationality in Ming Dynasty”. In 1940, he taught general history of China in Xuyong Branch of the Southwest Associated University, and he reached out to the society from the ivory tower. In July 1943, he joined the China Democratic Political Groups Alliance. At the same year, he took part in activities of the “Southwest Culture Research Association” under the leadership of Communist Party of China. In the conferences, he made speeches titled “Of Corruption”, “Of Soil” and “One Chapter of Corruption History”, criticizing the Kuomintang’s reactionary rule. Together with Wen Yiduo, he wrote articles and made speeches to expose the Kuomintang’s dark rule. On January 31, 1949, the north side of China was liberated. He was engaged in taking over the Peking University and the Tsinghua University. He served as deputy director of the school board, president of literature department and dean of history department in the Tsinghua University. He attended the founding ceremony of the People’s Republic of China. In 1957, he joined the Communist Party of China. He had been committed to history research, especial of the Ming Dynasty. He is one of the few experts in the history of the Ming Dynasty. In 1959, he studied Hai Rui and completed historical drama titled “Hai Rui Dismissed from Office”. In 1965, he was persecuted for the drama and the “Notes by Three Thinkers”. In October 1969, Wu Han died in the prison. What a tragedy given that he was such a diligent, integrity, and knowledgeable person. In July 1974, the CPC Beijing Municipal Committee reversed the unjust verdict of the so-called “anti-party clique” and reinstated his Party membership and redressed his political reputation. On September 14, the CPC Central Committee held a grand memorial service.

 

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