Thursday, March 08, 2007
Lim Book Keng - Retrospective at Singapore National Library
I was fortunate enough to visit the small yet very nicely-developed exhibit on Lim Boon Keng (1869 - 1957) currently on display at the Singapore National Library (until Sunday 18 March).
This fascinating man, the first Chinese to win a Queen's Scholarship (1887), was not only a prominent medical doctor, but also a legislator in the Straits Settlements Legco from the age of 26, entrepreneur (rubber tycoon, co-founder of OCBC Bank), a philanthropist (founded Singapore Chinese Girls School and many other societies), a vocal social reformer (anti gambling, anti-opium and pro-confucianism), educator (president of Amoy university in 1921), media baron (he and his father-in-law bought over a Chinese newspaper, renaming it 日新报) and an outspoken political activist (leader of a local anti-Manchu society and president of Singapore's branch of the Kuomintang).
In spite of being a third generation baba Chinese, Dr. Lim identified strongly with his Chinese roots and throughout his life strove to improve his Chinese language skills and reacquaint himself with the Chinese Confucian values that he believed were so lacking in the straits Chinese community. As president of Amoy University between 1921 and 1937 he was perhaps not prepared for the intensively negative reaction his support of Confucianism would have in the post 1919 May Fourth era (the writer Lu Xun publicly clashed with Dr. Lim for his encouragement of Confucianism).
I left the exhibit wondering if a man such as Dr. Lim could exist in modern day Singapore. For example, would a wealthy tycoon of his caliber be willing to speak his mind on a social issue such as gambling if it contradicted the party line? If he had been born even thirty years later would his pro-China outlook have put him on a collision course with other members of the Peranakan community that distrusted the China patriots? What do you think?
Try to visit the exhibit if you can. You can also read more about Lim Boon Keng from the following links:
Posted by macondo at 3:24 PM
Subscribe to: Post Comments (Atom)
I am very appreciated the author for publishing this article about "Lim Boon Keng" and his book. We all know Lim Boon Keng OBE was a Chinese physician who promoted social and educational reforms in Singapore. So thanks for sharing sharing this valuable post. By the way I am a top class professional writer and customwriting service provider. Generally i am works as a individual freelance writer at upwork. Here I am delivering my services in globally. So if any people are want need any writing help then you should contact me. Thanks
Nice Post you have shared here thanks for sharing and keep posting and keep going on. Cord Blood Banking Cost
That is awesome! Come on! If you really need help with essay and homework you can ask this guys for help! They rally know how to do it, and you will be so happy about the recount! Check this masters thesis writing service and go for wins, my friend! Good luck!
Post a Comment