China, Taiwan: Shou E Feng

Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's visit to the Yasukuni Shrine is a eulogy to Japan's militaristic war of aggression."

— Shou E Feng

After Japan’s surrender in 1945, during the purge of left intellectuals in Taiwan, Feng Shou E was sentenced to ten years’ imprisonment. But her passion for social justice and peace have not changed, and she has participated in various campaigns against war and colonialism. In 2003, she filed a lawsuit in the Osaka Court against the Japanese Prime Minister’s visit to the Yasukuni Shrine in Tokyo.

As a child, Feng Shou E was witness to the abuse and oppression of ordinary folk under the Japanese colonial regime. After 1945, she started to learn Chinese at the Lanyang Women’s Middle School, and within two years, she was able to write in Chinese. It was around this time that she became aware of the targeting of left intellectuals by the post-war rightist Nationalist regime. Her Chinese teacher disappeared suddenly from the school. In 1950, her elder brother Feng Chin Hui and she were arrested on the same day. Her brother was executed on the charge of organizing teachers’ associations in the school. She was given a sentence of ten years on the charge of joining an insurgent organization. On release from jail ten years later, Feng Shou E married Chen Ming Chong, also a political prisoner. In 1976, the couple was again arrested. Feng Shou E was released after interrogation, and Chen Ming Chong was almost sentenced to capital punishment, but Feng Shou E lobbied public support and there was also international pressure to which the Nationalist regime conceded. Chen’s sentence was changed to 15 years imprisonment. When her husband was jailed for the second time, Feng Shou E went through the tremendous hardship of bringing up two young daughters alone. However, her passion for social justice have not changed. Long years of imprisonment have taken their toll on her health, but she still participates in various international campaigns against war and colonialism. Feng has also often made common cause with the Taiwanese indigenous peoples in Japan to protest the immense harm inflicted on them by Japanese colonialism. In 2003, Feng Shou E filed her personal lawsuit in the Osaka Court in Japan against the Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi’s visit to the Yasukuni Shrine, calling the visit a eulogy to Japan’s militaristic war of aggression.