AS240 Women in Chinese Literature
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This course examines various modes of representation by which
women have been portrayed in traditional Chinese literature. Through
our close reading of a wide range of materials, including poetry,
fiction, essays, and drama from 600 BC to the end of 19th century,
the course seeks to explore new perspectives on issues relating
to gender studies, such as how the image(s) of women changed throughout
Chinese history, what kind of heroines were favored by Chinese
writers, and whether "women" becomes a literary trope
for Chinese society in the imperial China.
Class Format and Assignments:
The class will meet every Monday and Wednesday afternoon
for one hour and fifteen minutes (2:40-3:55pm). Active participation
in class discussion will be expected of all students. One short
paper (5 pages) and one long paper (10 pages) are required, as
listed in the following schedule. Two projects are required as
the preparation of the final paper. First project includes a
two-page long proposal and bibliography of the proposed final
paper. Second project is an oral presentation, which leads to
finalization of the final essay. Guidelines will be issued for
paper topics, and students will define individual topics in consultation
with the instructor.
Readings and Texts:
All reading assignments are to be completed by the dates listed
in the schedule. All texts, including those available for purchase,
will be on reserve. Please plan ahead for reserve readings, some
of which will be included in a course packet.
In addition to required readings, a number of texts will be available
on reserve for use as background material for your papers. Optional
readings will be suggested during the course, and you will be
expected to make use of non-required material for your papers.
Assigned Texts Available for Purchase are as follows:
Birch, Cyril, trans. The Peony Pavilion. Boston: Cheng & Tsui
David Hawkes, trans. The Story of the Stone. Vol. One: The Golden
Days. Penguin Books Ltd, 1973.
Leonard Pratt & Chiang Su-hui, trans. Six Records of a Floating
Life. Penguin Books Ltd, 1983.
Course packet containing selected readings.
Class participation 25%
Short paper 20%
Oral presentation 15%
Final essay 30%
Bibliographical Reference Works:
*Cahill, Suzanne E. Transcendence & Divine Passion: The Queen
Mother of the West in Medieval China. Stanford, California: Stanford
University Press, 1993.
Birrel, Anne. Chinese Mythology: An Introduction. Baltimore and
London: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1993.
*Ebrey, Patricia Buckley. The Inner Quarters: Marriage and Lives
of Chinese Women in the Sung Period. Los Angeles: University of
Edwards, Louise p., Men and Women in Qing China: Gender in The
Red Chamber Dream, Leiden, New York, and Koln: E.J. Brill, 1994.
Elvin, Mark. "The Inner World of the Early Nineteenth Century."
In his Changing Stories in the Chinese World. Stanford, California:
Stanford University Press, 1997, 11-48.
Guisso, Richard W. and Johannesen, Stanley, ed. Women in China.
New York: Philo Press, 1981.
*Hanan, Patrick. The Chinese Vernacular Story. Cambridge: Harvard
University Press, 1981.
*------. The Invention of Li Yu. Cambridge: Harvard University
*Huang, Martin W. Literati and Self-Re/Presentation: Autobiographical
Sensibility in the Eighteenth-Century Chinese Novel. Stanford,
California: Stanford University Press, 1995.
*Hsia, C. T.. The Classic Chinese Novel. New York: Columbia University
*Ko, Dorothy. Teachers of the Inner Chambers: Women and Culture
in Seventeenth-Century China. Stanford, California: Stanford University
*Levy, Dore J. Ideal and Actual in The Story of the Stone. New
York: Columbia University Press, 1999.
*Mann, Susan. Precious Records: Women in China's Long Eighteenth
Century. Stanford, California: Stanford University Press, 1997.
*Mcmanhon, Keith. Misers, Shrew, and Polygamists: Sexuality and
Male-Female Relations in Eighteen-Century Fiction. Durham &
London: Duke University Press, 1995.
Moi, Toril. Sexual/Textual Politics: Feminist Literary Theory.
London and New York: Methuen & Co., Ltd., 1988.
*Nienhauser, William H., ed. The Indiana Companion to Traditional
Chinese Literature. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1993.
*Plaks, Andrew, ed. Chinese Narrative: Critical and Theoretical
Essays. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1977.
*------. The Four Masterworks of the Ming Novel. Princeton: Princeton
University Press, 1987.
Raphals, Lisa. Sharing the Light: Representations of Women and
Virtue in Early China. Albany: State University of New York Press,
Roddy, Stephen J. "The Philological Musings of Jinghua yuan,"
in his Literati Identity and Its Fictional Representations in
Late Imperial China. Stanford, California: Stanford University
Warhol, Robyn R. and Herndl, Diane Price, ed. Feminisms: An Anthology
of Literary Theory and Criticism. New Jersey: Rutgers University
*Watson, Burton. Early Chinese Literature, New York: Columbia
University Press, 1962.
*Widmer, Ellen and Sun, Kang-I, ed. Writing Women in Late Imperial
China. Stanford, California: Stanford University Press, 1997.
Wu, Yenna. The Chinese Virago: A Literary Theme. Cambridge and
London: Harvard University Press, 1995.
Zeitlin, Judith T. Historian of the Strange: Pu Songling and the
Chinese Classical Tale. Stanford, California : Stanford University
Zhang, Yingjin, ed. China in a Polycentric World: Essays in Chinese
Comparative Literature. Stanford, California: Stanford University