Blue plaque for Chinese travel writer who won heart of 1930s Britain

The writer, artist and self-styled ‘silent traveller’ is one of the few ethnic minority figures to be recognised by English Heritage.

The Guardian published an article on Chiang Yee, the ‘silent traveller’, whose books have been an inspiration to us, we being the ‘not so silent travellers’, as is the Western way…

Read the full article here: https://www.theguardian.com/culture/2019/jun/29/chiang-yee-blue-plaque-china-greatest-cultural-ambassador

When Chiang Yee arrived in Britain in 1933, he was determined to study for a master’s degree at the London School of Economics and then return to China, where he had left his wife and four children under the care of his brother. He was 30 years old and knew just a handful of English words.

Yet Yee went on to become a popular artist, bestselling author, poet, designer, academic and hugely influential cultural ambassador of China to the west.

Now, 40 years after his death, his contribution to British and Chinese life has been honoured with a blue plaque unveiled yesterday in Oxford. Organised by author Paul French, a specialist in modern Chinese history, and Anne Witchard from the University of Westminster, Yee’s plaque comes in response to a campaign launched by English Heritage in 2016, calling for a more representative celebration of history.