Yuan Tengfei (Chinese: 袁腾飞; pinyin: Yuán Téngfēi; born February 8, 1972, in Beijing), is a history teacher in the People's Republic of China. His fans gave him the nickname "the most awesome history teacher in history" for his entertaining and comedic lectures, and the New York Times has described him as "[p]erhaps the most famous maverick teacher in China these days". He had been also a popular guest in Lecture Room of CCTV. Additionally, he released several books based on his history lectures in classrooms and on TV.
Yuan graduated from Capital Normal University with a major in Chinese history, and had since been teaching Chinese history in various Beijing high schools. He came to popular attention when videos of his history courses were posted online in 2008. The videos were classroom recordings made by a Beijing cram school, for which Yuan was moonlighting, and made available online behind the school's paywall. The videos were copied, presumably without any authorization, and posted to other free video-sharing websites.
Although Yuan is not a political dissident, his lectures on modern Chinese history covered sensitive topics such as the Great Chinese Famine and the Cultural Revolution in details that are not ordinarily required in the history curriculum in China. In particular, he is deeply critical of Mao Zedong and his policies. Yuan called Mao one of the "three great despots" of the 20th Century, rivalled by only Hitler and Stalin; he also once called the Mao Zedong Mausoleum in Tiananmen Square "China's Yasukuni Shrine". His lectures on such topics became an object of government attention and attacks from leftist conservatives, including threats of lawsuits for defamation.
- 《隐士与僧道》. 中国少年儿童出版社. ISBN 978-7-5007-5366-7.
- 《两宋风云》. 陕西师范大学出版社. July 2009. ISBN 978-7-5613-4724-9.
- 《历史是个什么玩意儿1 —— 袁腾飞说中国史上》History is just a game I —— Chinese History according to Yuan Tengfei, Part One. 上海锦绣文艺出版社. August 2009. ISBN 978-7-5452-0447-6.
- 《历史是个什么玩意儿2 —— 袁腾飞说中国史下》History is just a game II —— Chinese History according to Yuan Tengfei, Part Two. 花山文艺出版社. December 2009. ISBN 978-7-80755-720-3.
- 《历史是个什么玩意儿3 —— 袁腾飞说世界史上》History is just a game III —— World History according to Yuan Tengfei, Part One. 寧夏人民出版社. May 2010. ISBN 978-7-227-04474-1.
- 《历史是个什么玩意儿4 —— 袁腾飞说世界史下》History is just a game IV —— World History according to Yuan Tengfei, Part Two. 希望出版社. July 2010. ISBN 978-7-5379-4825-8.
- Mu, Eric (May 21, 2010). "The history lessons of Yuan Tengfei". Retrieved 2013-04-21.
- "School teacher Yuan Tengfei brings history vividly to life". CCTV.com. 2009-09-07. Retrieved 2013-04-21.
- Didi Kirsten Tatlow, "A System Afraid of Its Own History", The New York Times (September 16, 2010).
- Yuan Tengfei's Lecture on Mao Zedong; 袁腾飞说毛泽东
- 教委会调查袁腾飞"错误言论"事件 责令深刻检查 (in Chinese). 环球时报-环球网. 2010-05-13. Retrieved 2013-04-21.
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