A Pictorial History of Nantah
Nanyang University (Nantah) was the only Chinese language institution of higher education/learning outside China. Its establishment marked a milestone in the development of education among Chinese Overseas.
When Mr Tan Lark Sye proposed the founding of a Chinese language university in 1953, his vision was received with great enthusiasm by the Chinese communities in Singapore, Malaya and other parts of Southeast Asia.
Generous donations in cash and kind came from Chinese from all walks of life, from rich tycoons to poor hawkers and peddlers. However, the university soon encountered a series of setbacks and turbulence.
Although Nantah was able to establish itself rapidly as an institution offering quality education, it succumbed at the end to a host of pressures. In its brief 25-year history, from 1956 to 1980, the university was a beacon of Chinese language education and culture in Southeast Asia. The university and the values it inculcated in a generation of students embodied what is known as The Nantah Spirit. Nantah is widely regarded as a unique chapter in the annals of Chinese Overseas experience. Each of the 125 photographs presented in this book tells a thousand stories about hopes, idealism, commitment and self-sacrifices. They capture the unprecedented spirit behind the founding of Nantah, its growth and demise. It is a rich story that still evokes strong emotions among many.