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Wang Zhaoyuan (1763–1851) and the erasure of “talented women” By Liang Qichao

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Chapter Summary

Among the best known writings of Liang Qichao 梁啓超 is his 1897 Shiwu bao 時務報 article &t;nün nuxue&t; in which he asserted the value of women's education for the health and prosperity of the nation. Turning again to Liang?s allusion to Wang Zhaoyuan, we may contrast his attitude toward her scholarship with the list of her writings in Hu?s bibliography. The mid-Qing ?near burst? of women?s writing and compilation, which in many cases encompassed the support and appreciation of men, may be traced to mid-eighteenth- century scholarly reorientations. This chapter talks about Wang Zhaoyuan whose literary abilities and scholarly prowess extended way beyond ?the boundaries of the inner realm?. It then explores Wang?s life as chronicled in Xu?s ?Hao Langao fufu nianpu? 郝蘭皐 夫婦年譜, and then consider the implications of her biography in relation to Liang?s dismissal of her.

Keywords: Liang Qichao; Mid-Qing; Wang Zhaoyuan; women



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