Men & Women in Qing China is an analysis of Chinese prescriptions of gender as represented in Cao Xueqin’s famous eighteenth-century Chinese novel of manners, The Red Chamber Dream, or The Story of the Stone. Drawing on feminist literary critical methods, it examines Qing notions of masculinity and femininity, including themes such as bisexuality, motherhood, virginity and purity, and gender and power. Its central aim is to challenge the common assumption that the novel represents some form of early Chinese feminism by examining the text in conjunction with historical data. The book will be especially important to those interested in issues of gender in China, the history of Chinese literary criticism, and the application of feminist theory to the Asian context.
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