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The Yangbanxi Heroine And The Historical Tradition Of The Chinese Woman Warrior

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Chapter Summary

This chapter investigates how the yangbanxi women relate to the Chinese cultural tradition, particularly with regard to issues of gender and sexuality. It establishes what defined the normative parameters for the woman warrior figure in traditional culture, and then examine the significance of the Mulan figure in particular to the formation of a new identity for women in the Twentieth century. In the light of those findings the author considers how the yangbanxi heroines relate to the historical model of the woman warrior and the implications of those findings for Chinese women. The chapter also considers audience responses to the yangbanxi heroines both during and after the Cultural Revolution. In discussion of Chang Bao it is useful to consider her in relation to the literary model of the magical swordswoman. This chapter presents story synopses of Boulder Bay, Ode to Yimeng and Sons and Daughters of the Grasslands.

Keywords: Chang Bao; Chinese Woman Warrior; Historical Tradition; magical swordswoman; Mulan figure; Yangbanxi Heroine



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