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Chinese Literature
Dagongbao 大公報 "The Great Public Newspaper"

The Dagongbao 大公報 "Great Public Newspaper" was a politically neutral newspaper issued between the late Qing period 清 (1644-1911) and the early People's Republic 中華人民共和國 (1949-). The first issue appeared on June 17, 1902 in Tianjin, the chief editor was Ying Lianzhi 英斂之. One of the main fund providers was the merchant Wang Zhusan 王祝三 (Wang Zhilong 王郅隆). Ying was a supporter of the reformist group among the politicians of the late imperial period. In 1916 he shifted responsibility to Wang Zhusan who at that time was an adherent of the Anfu warlord clique 安福系. Hu Lin 胡霖 (Hu Zhengzhi 胡政之) took over edition and management. The newspaper experienced improvement in 1917 when its authors vehemently criticized Zhang Xun's 張勳 attempt at restoring the Qing dynasty. When the Anfu Clique was defeated by the Zhili Clique 直系 the newspaper lost ground and had to be ceased with the November 27, 1925 issue. A year later Hu Lin and Zhang Jiluan 張季鸞, the latter editor of the newspaper Zhonghua xinbao 中華新報 found a new financial source in Wu Dingchang 吳鼎昌, director of the Salt Industry Bank 鹽業銀行. On September 1, 1926, the Dagongbao was issued anew in Tianjin. The newly established newspaper was thoroughly restructured and combined news with an attempt to educate a reader conscious of his duty as citizen, with no inclination to parties, but critical to daily politics. The Dagongbao quickly became one of the most important newspapers of Republican China 中華民囯 (1911-1949). It was one of the first newspapers providing news from the Long March of the Communist Party. It also ardently advocated the resistance to the Japanese intrusion from 1931 on.
In 1936 a Shanghai branch was set up to reach a wider readership also in Southern China. The Tianjin bureau had to be closed during the Japanese occupation, headquarters in July 1937, and the Shanghai brach in December. Substitutional bureaus were set up in Hankou, Hong Kong, Guilin and in Chongqing where the Republican government had fled to. The Dagongbao also received attention abroad and was selected by the University of Missouri as the best foreign newspaper in 1941. The same year Zhang Jiluan deceased. The chief editorship was taken over by Wang Yunsheng 王芸生. Main editors were Cao Gubing 曹谷冰, Jin Chengfu 金誠夫 and Xu Zhucheng 徐鑄成. On November 1, 1945 the Shanghai bureau was reestablished, that of Tianjin in December, the Hong Kong bureau began issuing from March 15, 1948 on. The Chongqing bureau was kept and continued issuing the local edition. During the civil war the newspaper supported the Kuomintang Party's war against the Communists. After the foundation of the People's Republic the Shanghai and Chongqing bureaus were closed, while the Tianjin bureau could continue issuing a newspaper, but the name was altered to Jinbu ribao 進步日報 "Progress Daily". Yet after some time the traditional name was reestablished and the bureau moved to Beijing. The main fields covered by the now communist Dagongbao were finance, economy, and international affairs. On September 10, 1966, the last issue appeared. The Hong Kong bureau still publishes a newspaper under this name.

Source: Wang Chaoguang 汪朝光 (1992). "Dagongbao 大公報", in: Zhongguo da baike quanshu 中國大百科全書, Zhongguo lishi 中國歷史, vol. 1, p. 136. Beijing/Shanghai: Zhongguo da baike quanshu chubanshe.

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October 16, 2010 © Ulrich Theobald · Mail