UNESCO to co-host renowned VN teacher’s death anniversary

April 18, 2019 - 09:36
The executive board of UNESCO met on April 16 in Paris and decided to co-organise activities alongside the Vietnamese government to commemorate the 650th death anniversary of Confucian teacher Chu Văn An (1292-1370) next year.


A statue of great teacher Chu Văn An (1292-1370) placed at Hà Nội's Literature Temple. — Photo vanmieu.gov.vn

HÀ NỘI – The executive board of UNESCO met on Tuesday in Paris and decided to co-organise activities alongside the Vietnamese government to commemorate the 650th death anniversary of educator Chu Văn An (1292-1370) next year.

The board approved Việt Nam’s dossier on Chu Văn An together with 48 other dossiers among 71 submitted by 41 nations.

The dossiers should meet UNESCO’s ideology and mission on education, culture, science and mass media to promote peace, cultural dialogue and mutual understanding among people.

Each nominated figure and event should have broad influence, while being widely known both inside the country and around the world.

UNESCO has praised other distinguished Vietnamese figures, including the 600th anniversary of Nguyễn Trãi (1380-1442) in 1980, the 100th birthday anniversary of President Hồ Chí Minh (1890-1969) in 199, and the 250th birthday anniversary of Nguyễn Du (1766-1820) in 2015.

At the 40th meeting of UNESCO’s council this November, the organisation will officially issue the resolution to co-organise events for global figures.

Teacher Chu Văn An, who was famous for his intelligence and ethics, was born in 1292 in Văn Thôn Village, now a part of Thanh Trì District in capital Hà Nội.

He passed the academic exams but didn’t become a mandarin.

He decided to start a school in Huỳnh Cung Village near the Tô Lịch River.

He is considered a master teacher, who spent his lifetime spreading humane education philosophy, combining theory and practice, and popularising Confucian thinking in Việt Nam.

Many top officials at that time were his students, including prince Trần Vượng, a son of Emperor Trần Minh Tông (1300-1357).

Under King Dụ Tông’s reign (1341-1369), he discovered seven corrupted mandarins and proposed the king to give them death sentences but the king refused.

He retired and lived the rest of his life as a teacher and writer at Phượng Hoàng Mountain in the northern province of Hải Dương.

After his death in 1370, an altar dedicated to him was established in the Temple of Literature in Hà Nội.

According to Đặng Văn Bài, director of the Ministry of Culture and Information's Cultural Heritage Department, Việt Nam's image would be hugely improved if one of its representatives was honoured worldwide.
In order to be recognised by UNESCO, the figure must have had national or international influence and the anniversary must be divisible by 50. They must also have had humanitarian ideas or policies for peace.

Bài said Chu Văn An was a symbol of Việt Nam's education. VNS