Mr. Ba Jin is one of the greatest contemporary writers in China. His existence can be said to represent the intelligentsia of Asia.
The anti-imperialistic-patriotism movement which originated in Beijing on May 4, 1919 was known as the "5.4 movement" and spread throughout China. To this type of patriotism which went beyond the national framework, he set up a warning alarm, from the standpoint of universality; but at the same time he, himself participated in anarchistic movement in Shanghai and France. Mr. Ba Jin interpreted anarchism to mean emancipation, freedom, equality and altruism of the people at large. Furthermore, he was seeking love for mankind and humanitarianism in a broad sense.
However, as we can see in his maiden work "EXTINCTION," the agony he suffered caused by the decline and set-back of the anarchism movement was in a sense fortunate for him in that it guided him to become a fully-fledged writer. THE FAMILY, which was published in 1933, was the representative work of his earlier years. It depicted the antagonism against the feudalistic family system, and ideals of the youth at that time. It attracted the attention of young readers and acquired their overwhelming support.
He published many works after this, but as the result of the outbreak of the China-Japan War, in many of his critical essays he started to develop strong protests in his declaration of intention as a writer. Concurrent with his resistance and anger against the war, he revealed indignation against the corruption and pressure from within his own regime.
In this manner, Mr. Ba Jin's work in those days constantly described the people's daily life and acted as their spokesman. His representative work "GOLD NIGHTS" is said be a book which offered many leads to resolving tragedies of the common people, problems concerning self-sacrificing and love to the significance of societies, etc.
Mr. Ba Jin is very loyal to his conscience, he observes different ages and history with sincere attitude. He who has appealed his ideals to many people through his books, lost his position temporarily during the Cultural Revolution, but after his reinstatement, not only did he write stringent social criticism, but also offered self-criticism.
Mr. Ba Jin is a very valuable historical testimony, and has played a great role in contributing to advancing Asian intelligence and formulation of its culture. Therefore, beyond and doubt, we would like to present The Fukuoka Asian Cultural Prizes - The 1990 Special Commemorative Prize, to Mr. Ba Jin.