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Chinese Women and Their Problems during the High Qing Era - Term Paper Example

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The author examines Chinese women and their problems during the high Qing era. The author states that the Chinese people have a history of showing the utmost respect to their tradition, culture, language, and crafts and would go to any extent to protect them.   …
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Chinese Women and Their Problems during the High Qing Era
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Download file to see previous pages      Writing of the elite-dominated analysis of gender in High Qing times.  Sitting in the ivory towers, the intellectuals recorded their scholarly observations.  Susan extends the scope to the grassroots level. She deals with her contribution to the farm, household, entertainment by the courtesan, and the participation of women in rituals and domestic religious festivities; and above all, the important issue of women’s poetry. The sensibilities expressed by various women poets are great historical documents to the time during which these poems were written. They provide valuable information about the emotions of women, moral values, and social relations and to an extent, political judgments. Yuan Mei’s recollections of the women poets with whom he was acquainted with, were full of catkin images, especially the stories of child intellectuals who were brilliant poets. So also, Xie Daoyun of willow catkin fame was known for upstaging their male friends and relatives in verbal combat and poetry contests. That was a strange position, which Mann noticed and elaborated in her book, about the elite Chinese women. The patrilineal family demanded that elite women demonstrate family prestige by remaining secluded and restrict their activities. But they enjoyed a new type of freedom in the Qing constellation. They could write and reinterpret their own history. The elite women had a pragmatic approach to their role in society. They did not challenge the familial traditions or the social structure and the question of “women’s identity” that in a way challenged men, was of no consequence to them. They exploited and enjoyed the possibilities of autonomy that was prevalent within their society.  Mann provides the correct picture and structure of elite men and women, how both the entities are different, responsibility-wise!  By mid-life, when the man has normally reached the zenith of his career, woman as she matures earlier, her reproductive years come to a close.  ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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