Matching Items (4)
- All Subjects: Asian Literature
- Genre: Academic theses
- Genre: Masters Thesis
- Creators: Bokenkamp, Stephen
As many modern scholars have warned, the complexity of Tang narratives is far
beyond the reach of Lu Xun’s twentieth-century generic labels. Therefore, we should have
an acute awareness of the earlier limiting view of these categorizations, and our research
should transcend the limitations of these views in regard to this extensive corpus or to being
confined to rigid and meager reading of the richness of the stories. This dissertation will
use a transdisciplinary methodology that incorporates both history and literature in close
reading of seven Tang tales composed in the mid-to-late Tang eras (780s–early 900s), to
break the boundaries between the two generic labels, chuanqi and zhiguai, and unearth
significant configurations within these literary texts that become apparent only through
stepping across genre.
The frustrations of heaven's fragrance: an analysis and translation of Guan Hanqing's Qian dayin zhichong xie tianxiang
This thesis examines the play Qian Dayin zhichong Xie Tianxiang, written by the Yuan dynasty (1271-1368) playwright Guan Hanqing (c.1225-1302). The first chapter of this paper provides brief background information about northern style Yuan drama (zaju) as well as a plot summary and notes about the analysis and translation. Through a close reading of the play, I hope to illustrate how the play's complicated ending and lack of complete resolution reveals why it has received relatively little attention from scholars who have previously discussed other strong, intelligent female characters in Guan Hanqing's plays. The second chapter of this thesis includes translation of the play that is comprised of a wedge preceding the four acts. Before each act of the play is a critical introduction and analysis of the act to follow. Although many of Guan Hanqing's plays have been translated into English, this play has never been translated.
Based on literary works produced by the multiethnic literati of the Jin dynasty (1115–1234), this dissertation examines Chinese conceptions of the Steppe world in the early years of the Mongol era (1206–1260). As I show, late Jin literati, who took arduous journeys in the Eurasian Steppes, initiated transcultural communications between the Chinese and Steppe worlds. Their writings encouraged more Chinese literati to reach out to the Mongols and hence facilitated the spread of the ideal Confucian-style governance to the Mongol empire. In general, I follow the approach of New Historicism in analyzing poetic works. Even though the Mongol conquest of China damaged many northern literary texts, materials surviving from the thirteenth century still feature a great diversity. I brought historical records and inscriptions on stela to study the social conditions under which these literary works were produced. This dissertation aims to contribute a new voice to the ongoing effort to modify the traditional linear understanding of the development of Chinese literary tradition.
A Hypothesis on the Origin of Heptasyllabic Poetry: “Yange xing”, Celestial Master Daoism Poems, and Suburban Sacrifice Songs in the Han Dynasty
This thesis hopes to propose a new hypothesis about the origin of Chinese heptasyllabic poetry. Although there are numerous academic discussions in the existing poetic narrative, few of them have noticed the possible effect of the Celestial Master Daoism. Based on the literary analysis and formal comparison, this thesis first finds that, during the time Cao Pi曹丕 created his “Yange xing,” the first literati heptasyllabic poem, “cypress beam genre” (boliang ti柏梁體) poetry – the earliest form of heptasyllabic poetry – was already a normal, fixed, and mature poetic form within the community of Celestial Master Daoism. Therefore, Celestial Master Daoism’s mastery of boliang ti poetry and their intensive and frequent composition highly likely motivated Cao Pi, the new Wei ruler who took over the populace of Celestial Master Daoism and had a close relationship with Zhang Lu’s張魯 family, to learn and introduce this poetic form into his own poetic creation. Then, this thesis also traces this poetic form back to suburban sacrifice songs in the Han dynasty. During the reign of Emperor Wu, the prototype of boliang ti poetry appeared in suburban sacrifice songs created to express worship to heavenly and earthly deities. Hence, when the Celestial Master Daoism became the inheritor of regional power (mainly in Sichuan, Chongqing, and Shaanxi of today’s China) of the Han empire and hoped to establish their own regime, they created their own ritual texts by modeling after Han suburban sacrifice songs. In so doing, they demonstrated their legitimacy and exclusivity by connecting the regime itself with Dao.