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Full Access Writing Emotions: Ritual Innovation as Emotional Expression

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Writing Emotions: Ritual Innovation as Emotional Expression

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This article examines the chronological biographies of the Qing ritualists Yan Yuan (1635-1704) and Li Gong (1659-1733) to witness how they negotiated and wrote about the ritual and emotional priorities in their relationships with various family members. It argues that rather than being just a form of ritual duty, filial piety was a core emotion at the center of many people's affective and spiritual lives. Although the conservative nature of nianpu (chronological biography) as a genre meant that some of the most intimate relationships in these two men's lives would get passed over in silence, the recording of their manipulation of ritual forms allowed them an indirect means of expressing their affective bonds.

Affiliations: 1: University of Oregon


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