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Abstract

This study, based on an examination of evidence from the two Tang dynastic histories with cross references to the relevant Tang anecdotes and funerary inscriptions, discusses the role of mothers in the well-being of the Tang state. The paper argues that motherhood occupied a crucial place in the two dynastic histories and demonstrates that the Tang official depiction of motherhood fitted into a basic pattern of how mothers were represented in earlier traditional Chinese portrayals of motherhood. This essay discloses that there are two possible scenarios behind the placement of the Tang official narratives of maternal acts. Both of these scenarios represent a historiographical recording of maternal actions that the male elite narrators felt were directly or indirectly involved in the preservation of the state.

In: NAN NÜ
In: NAN NÜ
In: NAN NÜ
In: An Intellectual History of China, Volume Two
In: An Intellectual History of China, Volume Two
In: An Intellectual History of China, Volume Two