Author of 'poisonous' reading material suspected of glorifying Japanese invaders dismissed from position
Published: Mar 26, 2024 08:04 PM
Photo: Sina Weibo

Photo: Sina Weibo

A reading material in a Chinese test for junior high school students in Chengdu, Southwest China’s Sichuan Province, has recently sparked controversy for allegedly glorifying Japanese invaders and insulting China’s Eighth Route Army in their fight during the War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression (1931-1945). The author of the controversial material has since been dismissed from his position, the Global Times learned on Tuesday. 

According to photos circulated on the internet by netizens, the reading comprehension material in the Chinese language test for junior high school grade three students in Xindu district titled “Dujuanhualuo,” which literally translates to “falling azaleas,” depicted a story from the perspective of a Japanese invader who attacked and bombed the Eighth Route Army for capturing his son who was on the way to visit him but accidentally killed his own son. 

The article used a series of inappropriate words with negative connotation to describe the actions of the Eighth Route Army such as “flee” and described the Japanese invader holding his son’s corpse with blood spewing “like peony flowers withering,” which was criticized for portraying the death as overly moving and tragic. 

The official WeChat account of Xindu district released a notice on Monday evening stating that in response to the negative influence of the reading material, a joint investigation team has been established to conduct a thorough investigation into the incident. The relevant teaching and research staff, as well as the head of the district education science research institute, have been suspended from duty. According to the probe results, the personnel responsible for the incident will be seriously dealt with in accordance with related regulations. 

Netizens pointed out that according to the information revealed on the test paper and the information on the internet, the essay was written and posted online by a middle school headmaster named Li Jiaqian from Tangyin county in Central China’s Henan Province in 2023. Tangyin county is the hometown of Yue Fei, a military commander during the Southern Song Dynasty (1127-1279), who was famous for his loyalty and courage. 

The Global Times learned on Tuesday from an employee from the education bureau in Tangyin county that Li had been dismissed from his position and that the local authorities are currently dealing with this matter with great importance attached to it. 

The test paper has been called “poisonous” and sparked heated discussions on the internet, with many netizens expressing their anger over how such material could appear in a test. 

“I initially thought that the criticism was just nitpicking the wording and exaggerated interpretation, but after reading the whole article, I felt horrified. How dare they forget about the suffering and bloodshed of so many Chinese compatriots and soldiers!” a netizen commented. 

Other netizens pointed out that all the parties involved should be held accountable for including such material in the test paper. They also noted how terrifying it was that someone like Li existed in the educational system. 

Global Times