In 1937 Cao Yu's third play The Wilderness (the Chinese name of which can also be translated as The Field) was released but enjoyed less success than his previous works. Thunderstorm
Thunderstorm is undoubtedly one of the most popular dramatic Chinese works of the period prior to the Japanese invasion of China in 1937. Hsia admit that the popularization and consolidation of China's theatrical genre is fundamentally owed to the first works of Cao Yu.
It is largely through the efforts of Cao Yu that the modern Chinese "spoken theater" took root in 20th-century Chinese literature. His most well-known works are Thunderstorm (1933) Sunrise (1936) and Peking Man (1940).