Ruth F. Weiss (1908-2006)
AJewish Austrian-Chinese educator, journalist, and lecturer, Ruth Weiss was the last surviving European eyewitness of the Chinese Communist Revolution and the beginnings of the People’s Republic of China. Born in Vienna, she graduated in German and English Studies from the University of Vienna. In 1933 she travelled to Shanghai, a city that before World War II attracted many European émigrés including revolutionaries from the Spanish Civil War, Jews and other refugees escaping the Nazis, and started as a freelance journalist. She decided to stay, as did many others, and became fascinated by the social and political goals of the unfolding Chinese Revolution. Later she became a teacher at the Jewish School in Shanghai and at the West China Union University. After working briefly as a secretary at the Canadian embassy in 1944, she became a correspondent at the United Nations Picture News Office in 1945 and joined the China Welfare Fund. One year later she took up a post at the Radio Division of the United Nations Organization in New York. After she returned to China she became a lecturer for the Publishing House for Foreign Literature in Beijing from 1952 to 1965. In 1965 she worked as a journalist for "China im Bild".
Ruth Weiss was one of about one hundred foreignborn residents to receive Chinese citizenship in 1955. She died in Beijing, aged 97, with her ashes resting in peace at the Soong Ching-ling Cemetery in Shanghai.