Cogs and Wheels: The material culture of revolutionary China

April 15, 2007

Though I Am Gone: Cultural Revolution Documentary

Filed under: Censorship, China, Cultural Revolution, Film — amyjaneb @ 7:32 pm

Via Danwei and loads of other blogs is this Chinese-made documentary about Bian Zhongyun, supposedly the first teacher to be beaten to death (by her female students) during the Cultural Revolution.*  The documentary has attracted attention, not just for its powerful subject matter, but because its inclusion in a film festival in Yunnan lead to the event’s cancellation by the Chinese authorities.

The whole documentary, with English-language subtitles, is available in ten parts on You Tube.  I’ve only had a chance to view the first part so far (via the Citizen of Philadelphia blog), but I’ll definitely make the time to watch the rest over the next couple of days.

*In an addendum to the Danwei post Geramie Barme suggests that Bian was neither the first teacher killed, nor that she was beaten to death (though she was clearly beaten).  But that her death remains notorious, probably in no small part due to her husband’s efforts to document her death and the events and persecution she suffered leading up to it.



  1. Well, I watched the whole film this evening. Harrowing, but important stuff. Really, I can’t recommend it enough.

    Interesting to note the brief reference to a ‘future museum of the Cultural Revolution’.

    Comment by amyjaneb — April 16, 2007 @ 10:06 pm

  2. […] was beaten to death by 16 year-old girls in 1966 – apparently a contentious story, according to a blog discussion I’ve read. At the time of her death he photographs her body & documents the […]

    Pingback by ‘Though I am gone’ « Newshufa’s Weblog — October 6, 2007 @ 3:43 pm

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