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ShaoXing, Lu Xuns Hometown 2016-01-29 12:36:00

Lu Xun(鲁, 1881–1936) was a famous Chinese writer, philosopher and revolutionist from the early 20th century. An important person during the New Cultural Movement, he wrote the first novel in contemporary Chinese, The Madmans Diary(记). He often criticized the Chinese society in his times through his writings, and at the same time played a key role in the establishment of modern Chinese literature. Among his other works are The Story of AhQ(Q传), Nahan(呐, Outcry), and Wild Grass().

ShaoXing(绍兴), ZheJiang(˰) is the city where Lu Xun was born, and where he spent one-third of his life. Visiting this city, people always stop by at Lu Xuns former dwelling (鲁ͺ), one of the biggest tourist attractions in the area. The scenery with the traditional Chinese atmosphere and the buildings that Lu Xun once dwelled in provide us with a great opportunity to feel and learn about the life and work of the great writer, and the world he lived in.

-Old Taimen of the Zhou Family(ʫ门)
The entrance of LuXunGuLi leads directly into the Old Taimen(House Complex) of the Zhou Family. The south-facing complex, with white walls and black tiled roofs, is one of the best-preserved house complexes built in the Qing Dynasty in the area. The long corridors of the large house are connected to many rooms, including the study, the bedroom, the reception room, as well as the ancestor-worshipping hall. The house was the residence of the Lu Xuns ancestors for decades.

-Former Residence of Lu Xun(鲁ͺ)
Lu Xuns former residence is right nearby; the writer was born there in September 25, 1881. The house looks similar to his ancestors house, with many rooms and halls. Lu Xun resided in this house also during his years as a teacher. His friends and students often visited him there, in which the reception room played an important role. There is also a bedroom that belonged to Lu Xuns mother and another for his first wife, Zhu An(); the door at the north is connected to BaiCao Garden, Lu Xuns favorite place during his childhood.

-From BaiCao Garden(园) to SanWei Study(߲ګ书)
BaiCao Garden was a deserted vegetable plot at the back of Lu Xuns house where he spent his early years. Lu Xun wrote about this place in memory of his past, mentioning that he used to play there with his peers, with the company of plants and birds and insects. It is well preserved even today.
The writers childhood, however, went through changes as he started his years in the village school called SanWei Study. It was a famous schoolhouse in the late Qing Dynasty, where Mr. Shou(寿镜) taught students to read and write. Lu Xun acquired the basics of his outstanding writing career in this place from age 12 to 17, receiving good education in the field of Chinese literature. The building is about 35 square meters wide, and there is the teachers desk and chair in the middle of the room. Students used to study in their seats under the window. We can see many photos of Lu Xuns school days as well as related explanations on the walls.

-Lu Xun Memorial Hall
The memorial hall located near Lu Xuns former dwellings contains a lot of valuable information, including plenty of real materials, that tells us the story of Lu Xuns life, from birth to death. The two-story building begins the story on the writers early years in ShaoXing. A hologram show that illustrates Lu Xuns memoir about a play is shown on one side, and there are also photos of Lu Xuns hometown, family, and his transcripts about his childhood. As the tourists continue on the journey, they are introduced of Lu Xuns later times in Nanjing, Japan, Beijing and Shanghai. People can see letters to and from Lu Xun, Lu Xuns original works and translations, and group pictures and written oaths from the revolution. At the end of the tour of the museum, there are souvenirs related to Lu Xun as well as his books. Computers with comprehensive information about Lu Xuns life and career, which includes a preview of Lu Xuns literary works, are also a great source of knowledge that we must not miss.

Outside, the streets take tourists back to when Lu Xun lived. Traditional buildings, stores with Chinese attire, people selling special foods. Stinky tofu is one of the most famous treats in ShaoXing; it has a strong odor, but the taste is surprisingly nice. We can also see WuPeng Boats(乌篷), little wooden boats, roaming on the waters. Throughout the area, the view is very peaceful and beautiful, and full of pleasant excitement.

For anyone who is interested in Lu Xun, or planning to visit China, ShaoXing would definitely be a nice place to go!

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