Honorary awards

Professor Hu Wenzhong

On Tuesday 23 October 1990 the honorary degree of Doctor of Letters was conferred upon Professor Hu Wenzhong, Director of the Australian Studies Centre, Academic Vice-President of Beijing Foreign Studies University in China, and Chairman of Ihe National Liaison Committee for Australian Studies in China.

Mr Gough Whitlam, Professor Hu Wenzhong & Professor Don McNicol

Professor Hu Wenzhong (centre) with former Prime Minister, Mr Gough Whitlam (left) and the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Don McNicol, photo, 'The University News', 30 October 1990, University Archives.


In 1979 Professor Hu Wenzhong led a group of eight students from China to read English at the University of Sydney. He had no formal qualifications as his academic career had been arrested by the Cultural Revolution. He showed a particular interest in Australian literature, graduated with an MA in modern literature and subsequently became known throughout China for his English language programs on television. He established Australian studies al his own University and in 1988 convened Ihe first Australian Studies Conference in China. He has made an outstanding contribution to the rapid development of Australian Studies throughout his country.

Mr Gough Whitlam, former Prime Minister and former graduate of the University and Fellow of Sentle, who met Professor Wenzhong in China, attended the ceremony.

From 'The University of Sydney News', 30 October 1990