Shanghai: Wenhua shenghuo chubanshe, [194-]. 243p., lightly worn wraps with ownership signature of John DeFrancis across top edge of front cover, internal stamps of the Georgetown University Institute of Languages and Linguistics. Preface dated 1936, but this is an undated 26th reprint. Series: Cao Yu xiju ji 1.
Cao Yu was one of the most important playwrights of 20th century China, his work seeing numerous reprints during his lifetime. This play, translated as Thunderstorm, is about the destruction of a family at the hands of its incestuous patriarch. Cao Yu played the lead role himself at its Nanjing debut in 1936. After World War II Cao and Lao She toured the United States for a year. John DeFrancis was a prominent scholar of Chinese. After returning to the US in 1936 from adventures in China he obtained a PhD at Columbia, going on to teach Chinese at Johns Hopkins University. During the McCarthy Red Scare he was blacklisted for his defense of Owen Lattimore. The series of Chinese language textbooks he published through Yale in the 1960s had a major impact on the teaching of the language.