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Milk and Scent: Works About Women in the Shishuo Xlvyu Genre

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"Milk and Scent" presents an interdisciplinary study of two Chinese works about women, both written after the genre of the famed Six Dynasties work, the Shishuo xinyu (A new account of tales of the world), and therefore entitled Nü Shishuo (Women's Shishuo). The two authors, one a man and the other a woman, both lived during the late imperial period and each endeavored to establish a female value system upon their disappointment with men and conventional patriarchal values. Caused by their different gender, social, and cultural positions, their viewpoints about the values of women's life conflicted, coincided, and interacted with each other. Occupying the center of this joint venture were two pivotal elements associated unmistakenably with the female body-milk and scent-the fluid and penetrating essence of which connected the female body to the rest of the world, and hence defined the value relationships in between.

Affiliations: 1: Rice University


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