Chinese authorities investigate killer’s school to train submissive wives

Ex-con offers free classes to train women in the ‘traditional virtue’ of subservience to men

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 03 December, 2017, 3:42pm
UPDATED : Friday, 05 January, 2018, 2:23pm

Authorities in northwestern China are investigating a controversial school set up by a former jailed killer to teach women the “traditional” value of being submissive to their husbands, Chinese media report.

The school in Fushun, Liaoning province, offers seven- and 20-day “women’s virtue” courses in which the participants are required to wake up 4.30 every morning and work on domestic chores for eight hours under the command of their tutors, according to the Liaoshen Evening News.

In the classes, tutors lectured the women to “talk less and work more” and chastised them for wearing make-up or having career ambitions, the report said.

Some of the women are sent to the school by their husbands and others by their employers. Places are also reportedly available for the young daughters of the women.

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The school was founded by Kang Jinsheng, who left school at 14 after stabbing his teacher. He joined a gang and was on the run for three years after killing another gang member in 1988 before being arrested and given a suspended death sentence, the report said.

Kang was released in 2009 and “inspired” to change when he attended a seminar about Chinese traditional cultural values.

After going into business selling bottled water, he set up the Fushun Traditional Values Association in 2011 and offered the classes for women, later setting up branches in Wenzhou, Zhengzhou and Sanya.

Footage of one of the classes showing women weeping, kneeling and apologising for “wrongful deeds” gained widespread attention online last week.

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One 47-year-old woman attending the classes said she was shocked by the physical “torture” and problematic tenets of the course.

“I didn’t expect it would be like this – that I would be treated as even worse than a prisoner,” she said. “What I find worse is that they instil the idea that men are superior to women and our teachers keep repeating that the most important task for a woman is to reproduce, that she cannot say ‘no’ to her husband and divorce is unacceptable.”

Fushun’s civil affairs bureau said it approved the establishment of Kang’s association but did not give the go-ahead for the school, the report said.