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2015-12-15    ????:??E    ?? ??     


At the beginning of the 20th century, a number of Chinese students were sent to study in the United States on the Boxer Rebellion Indemnity Scholarship Program. Part of the first remission of money was also used to establish a preparatory school??named Tsinghua College and also called the “American Indemnity College”. Every year, the College would send some graduates and faculty to study in the United States. Lin Yutang, who got the chance to study at Harvard, was also a beneficiary of the Boxer Indemnity.
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Lin was born into a Christian family. His father was a Christian minister. Therefore, in 1912 Lin entered the Theological School of Saint John’s University in Shanghai to become a minister following in the footsteps of his father. While he was in Theological School, Lin tried to find answers to a number of questions about the meaning of life and went through almost every book at the University library. Still, he failed to find his answers. Then he left the Theological School, giving up his plan of becoming a Christian minister, and changed his major to language studies.
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After graduation in 1916??Lin taught school at Tsinghua College. Three years later, Lin was qualified to receive a half-scholarship to study for a doctoral degree at Harvard University in the United States. Lin studied comparative literature at Harvard and received his master’s degree in comparative literature. However, Lin had to leave Harvard early in 1922 because he could not afford to continue to study there. He moved to France and eventually to Germany, where consumption level was not so high. Finally, in 1923 Lin completed the requirements for a doctoral degree at the University of Leipzig in Germany. Lin enjoyed studying abroad, but he had qualms about Westerners’ preoccupation with logic and scientific method. After coming back to China, from 1923 to 1926 Lin taught English literature at Peking University. He served as Dean at Amoy University in 1926??after being chased out of Beijing, as his writings offended the warlord Zhang Zongchang.
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Lin was a prolific writer and wrote over 35 books in English and Chinese. Besides, he was very active in the popularization of classical Chinese literature in the West. He worked to formulate Gwoyeu Romatzyh, a new method of romanizing the Chinese language, and created an indexing system for Chinese characters. He also invented and patented a Chinese typewriter.
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After 1928 Lin lived mainly in the United States. Lin saw himself as a “World citizen”??an ambassador who brought Chinese culture to the West, and who encouraged communication between the East and the West.

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