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Chapter Summary

Courtship activities also occurred by day, in secluded places. Young women worked in distant cotton fields, collected duckweed from distant rice paddies, or gathered wild vegetables or mushrooms in the mountains. This 'courtship' was patently not a classic love affair. From the young man's perspective the goal was just to catch a glimpse of the woman, or at best to have a brief conversation, to find out more about her. Some men with more experience or courage whistled on leaves to draw the women's attention. If the women waved their white head-towels, this was a summons for the men to come. If not well acquainted with the women, the men approached timidly and slowly and then sat at the side of the field watching the women at work. Countryside courtship mainly occurred between men from Xiaozhai and women from Dazhai, or vice-versa.

Keywords: courtship; Dazhai; rice paddies; Xiaozhai; young women



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