College female morality talk sparks criticism

By Xu Keyue Source:Global Times Published: 2019/4/21 22:03:39

A Chinese university is in hot water after it invited a classical culture expert to give a "female morality lecture," in which the expert allegedly discriminated against women and poor people. 

"Obedience is foremost for female's survival," "querulous woman in a family will ruin three generations," "the rich do not gain petty advantages, but the poor do," An Deyi, a guoxue (ancient Chinese literature and classics) expert, allegedly said on Thursday at a lecture in Central China Normal University in Wuhan, capital of Central China's Hubei Province, according to students attended attending the lecture. 

"The topic of the lecture was traditional Chinese culture and personality cultivation, but we all think what An said was feudal nonsense," a student surnamed Li told the Global Times on Sunday. Li said the speech insulted and irritated students.

Many students complained that An was distorting guoxue and damaging real researchers, reported on Saturday. 

After the lecture, many students questioned An's academic ability and qualifications. 

In response, the university announced on Saturday that it had invited An to give a lecture, given his rich experience on traditional Chinese culture and education. "The lecture followed normal procedure… the undergraduate college will further standardize lecture management," the university said, without mentioning the controversy surrounding An's lecture. 

Li said the university also forced students to attend the lecture. Wang Zhi'an, a Beijing-based media commentator posted on Sina Weibo a screenshot of the university's notice that said "president Zhao asked about 100 students to attend the lecture." But the university denied its president Zhao Lingyun invited An or insisted students to attend. 

An is just one of many so-called classical culture experts who have allegedly distorted guoxue in recent years. Thus, China's Ministry of Education issued a notice earlier this month banning training institutions from promoting feudalism in the name of guoxue.


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