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dc.contributor.advisorVoci, Paola
dc.contributor.advisorHaixin, Jiang
dc.contributor.authorShen, Li-Jiun
dc.identifier.citationShen, L.-J. (2015). Re-Writing Women in Qingshi (Thesis, Doctor of Philosophy). University of Otago. Retrieved from
dc.description.abstractThis study examines women in Qingshi 情史 (QS). QS is a volume of 851 love stories, some dating back as early as Xia 夏 (ca 2100 -1600 B.C.E.) and continuing through to the Ming 明 (1368-1644) dynasty. By deploying both textual and contextual methods I seek to answer the following questions: Do women in QS present traits that are not quite fitting within their traditional roles? While acknowledging that the book presents itself as a compilation of “old” stories, can the specific choices, changes, additions and commentaries through which women and their stories are narrated be considered as meaningful “re-writing”? If women are indeed “re-written” in QS, how does this re-writing contribute to the creation of a counter-discourse on women and, more broadly, on morality in the late Ming empire? My analysis shows that QS is not just a mere compilation of stories. I support my claim by pointing out the many interventions that clearly make this book the product of one multi-faceted but consistent voice, Feng Menglong 馮夢龍 (1574-1646). Acknowledging Feng as the voice behind the women presented in QS, I begin by investigating both Feng’s public and private spaces, framing this “male voice” in the specific historical, social context of the late Ming period characterized by an incompetent autocracy, societal and economic fluidity, and a stifling bureaucracy. I subsequently examine how, via the analysis of specific stories, QS gives voice to women. Through a close analysis of a selection of stories, I examine the key images through which women are “re-written”. They are beautiful, talented, intelligent, and resourceful while still arguably traditional in terms of basic Confucian views. It is thanks to their specific association with qing that women are re-located beyond the boundaries of the prescriptive Confucian teachings: that is, to share a common – and I would suggest more equal – ethical space with men.
dc.publisherUniversity of Otago
dc.rightsAll items in OUR Archive are provided for private study and research purposes and are protected by copyright with all rights reserved unless otherwise indicated.
dc.subjectRepresentation of Women
dc.subjectMale Voice
dc.subjectScholars’ Culture
dc.subjectthe Ming History
dc.titleRe-Writing Women in Qingshi
dc.language.rfc3066en and Cultures of Philosophy of Otago
otago.openaccessAbstract Only
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