A Study of Manuscripts, Texts, and Contexts in Memory of John R. McRae
Chán Buddhism in Dūnhuáng and Beyond: A Study of Manuscripts, Texts, and Contexts in Memory of John R. McRae is dedicated to the memory of the eminent Chán scholar John McRae and investigates the spread of early Chán in a historical, multi-lingual, and interreligious context. Combining the expertise of scholars of Chinese, Tibetan, Uighur, and Tangut Buddhism, the edited volume is based on a thorough study of manuscripts from Dūnhuáng, Turfan, and Karakhoto, tracing the particular features of Chán in the Northwestern and Northern regions of late medieval China.
In: NAN NÜ
Author: Yuanfei Wang

Abstract

This article examines the emaciated self-images of four women’s self-inscription poems on their own portraits. They are Huang Hong (early seventeenth century), Xi Peilan (1760­­­–after 1829), Tan Yinmei (fl. mid-eighteenth to early nineteenth century) and Zheng Lansun (1819-61). These women similarly describe their self-images as qiaocui (emaciated), alluding to the legendary girl poet Feng Xiaoqing. Inherently ambivalent, qiaocui could imply sexual and erotic appeal, the virtuous mind of a recluse, sickness, ordinariness, melancholy, as well as aging and death. The article argues for the importance of the rhetoric of qiaocui and the topoi of Feng Xiaoqing in the self-inscriptions by women in Hangzhou and the broader Jiangnan region as a medium to construct their female subjectivity. This article suggests that, initially a persona publicly circulated in the late Ming, the topoi of Feng Xiaoqing came to define the women’s personhood in private spaces in late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries.

In: NAN NÜ
In: NAN NÜ
Author: Qiaomei Tang

Abstract

Su Hui was a late fourth century Chinese woman who is famed for her creation of brocade palindromic poems. Due to an account of her life story, attributed to the female emperor Wu Zetian, that highlighted her jealous disposition, Su Hui is remembered today primarily as a talented but jealous wife, which is in contrast with how she was viewed in the period prior to the Wu version. Tracing the genealogy of Su Hui’s narrative in pre-Tang and Tang literary and visual materials, this article demonstrates that the definitive version of Su Hui’s story is misattributed to Wu Zetian and, more importantly, that the image of this well-known figure of early medieval China underwent a transformation that reflects important aspects of Late Tang literary culture. In ‘boudoir lament’ poetry of the Southern Dynasties period, Su Hui is the stock image of a melancholy wife longing for her absent husband. In ‘frontier’ poetry of the Tang dynasty, she is a worrying wife concerned with her military husband fighting on the borderlands. It is in a Late Tang prose account misattributed to Wu Zetian that we finally see her as a jealous woman competing for her husband’s affections. The transformation of Su Hui’s image across three major literary genres over a period of half a millennium offers readers a window into the literary and cultural changes that took place in medieval China.

In: NAN NÜ
Author: Alan Baumler

Abstract

During the War of Resistance against Japan (1937-1945) the Chinese government publicized heroic pilots to win domestic and international support for the war effort and to raise money. These pilots also helped create a gendered image of China that was used by both state and non-state actors. The male pilot and martyr Yan Haiwen (1916-37) was part of a masculine discourse of sacrifice aimed at domestic audiences. The female pilot Lee Ya-Ching (1912-98) presented a modern, technologized Chinese femininity which assisted in the Chinese war effort by appealing to white audiences, but was also used by Overseas Chinese communities for their own purposes.

In: NAN NÜ