City University of Hong Kong
Department of Chinese, Translation and Linguistics
Song Period Aesthetics and Issues of Masculinity
Prof. Ronald Egan
University of California, Santa Barbara
Date: 08 June 2006, Thursday
The Northern Song period witnessed several interesting and unprecended new directions in aesthetic activity and thought, including the composition of treatises on flowering plants (huapu), new ways of justifying the rather problematic genre of the song lyric (ci), and a new form of poetry criticism known as "poetry talks" (shihua). Each of these developments required authors and critics to confront traditional elite culture ideas about "beauty" (floral, feminine, and poetic) and the proper male attitude towards it. As different as each area of activity was, we find some interesting similarities in the way the problems they posed were addressed and eventually mitigated, nessitating modifications in received notions of masculinity. A selection of important Song texts on these subjects will be presented and discussed in the seminar. The texts will be available in the Department in advance of the meeting.
Ronald Egan is Professor of Chinese literature at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He is the author of books on the Song period authors Ouyang Xiu and Su Shi, as well as translator of an English selection of Qian Zhongshu's *Guanzhui bian*. His new book, *The Problem of Beauty: Aesthetic Thought and Pursuits in Northern Song Dynasty China" will be published this summer by Harvard University Press.
Time: 4:30pm - 5:30pm
Venue: B7603 (Lift 3, 7/F, Blue Zone), Academic Building, CityU of HK
~All Are Welcome ~