An analysis of the book the death of woman wang by jonathan spence

But despite this it was a fascinating read. The book also covered the economic hardships of life. This section contains words approx. As someone who is particularly interested in the supernatural tales of China and the belief in magic, it was interesting to see these tales put into their social, rather than religious, context.

I thought this book was a close look at the live and death of one woman in this area, but in fact it was a series of different tales and histories, from within the span of about 20 years within this area. Spence tells the stories of women who are considered virtuous and those who are not and end up being killed for their immoral ways.

The author uses three main primary sources, amid many other secondary sources. There is also much than can be learned about the lives of women from this book. It suffered thousands of its residents being killed by the Manchu, famine, the White Lotus uprising and an earthquake!

Because he focused on such a small area the detail was dramatic and there were lots of specific examples given instead of wide generalisations. One issue is that of the land, its ability to feed people and the ability of people living on the land to pay taxes.

The restrictions, and also the opportunities, for these women were quite interesting. This is an area on the tributaries of the Yellow River, that is inland but not far from the sea. The area seems to have suffered immense hardship in the period leading up to the time of the stories. Without a doubt it is one that I would recommend to anyone who was interested in learning more about Imperial Chinese history it is easily accessible, well researched and well written.

As such this gives an insight into life and culture of the time that is quite remarkable. Spence gives the reader an in-depth idea of life in a small county in Northern China, in the s.

Feng in his history work is blunt about the collapse of the population and cultivated land area in the fifty years before the work is written in The second group of primary sources used by the author is the Memoirs and Handbook of Huang Liu-hung who is a magistrate, or judge, in the county, during the s.

After extensive general observations about banditry in the county, the fourth chapter describes in fiction and from historical record, the crimes of a group of bandits and the struggle of honest people to stop their murders and thievery. Sometimes the book reads like a collection of fictional stories, though its purpose is to be a historical reconstruction, and the book has extensive notes in the back of the book, and a bibliography.

I have to say I was under the impression it was completely different than what it was. For his sources Spence used the local history, a memoir of the local magistrate, and the stories of Pu Songling. He also looked at the options of women who wished to escape marriages, which were virtually non-existent.

Spence also said that he would not focus on the elite class, however many of the people in his stories had servants or could read and write. There are also the special problems of the lives of widows, and their struggles to obtain income and raise children, especially sons. Finally, in Chapter 5, through primary sources and stories, the rights of women in general are examined, which leads to the sad case of the death of woman Wang.

He also included a rather telling list of the prices for visiting prostitutes versus the prices for buying a wife, or the wife of another. Spence sets out by saying how this book does not focus on a position of note, and that no one famous comes from it.

The later are fictional stories, frequently involving fox spirits, ghosts and magic that make for a startling contrast beside the tales of famine, hardship and banditry that exist in the non-fictionalised accounts.

The Death of Woman Wang Summary & Study Guide

Sure signs they were not a part of the populace at large. This however, I would disagree with. However, even the stories represent real life and Spence frequently gives the fictional account and then a matching historical episode.

Huang is also at times a character in the book and plays a significant role as a judge in the trial concerning the murder of woman Wang. Its population at the start of the book was only a third of what it was 60 years earlier.

The Death of Woman Wang

· Review Of "The Death Of Woman Wang" By J. D. Spence Lillian M. Li Swarthmore College, etymology based on graphic analysis, even though supplemented by Book Reviews JONATHAN SPENCE has here once again presented us with a vivid re-creation of history.

However, unlike his earlier work,

Jonathan Spence Writing Styles in The Death of Woman Wang

The Death of Woman Wang by Jonathan Spence,available at Book Depository with free delivery The Death of Woman Wang, by Jonathan Spence is an educational historical novel of northeastern China during the seventeenth century.

The author's focus was to enlighten a reader on the Chinese people, culture, and  · ''The Death of Woman Wang,'' ''The Question of Hu'' and ''Emperor of China,'' the autobiography of the Kang Xi Emperor, now shows himself capable of weaving a tapestry that includes and transcends these discrete The Death of Woman Wang Study Guide consists of approx.

33 pages of summaries and analysis on The Death of Woman Wang by Jonathan D. Spence. This study guide includes the following sections: Plot Summary, Chapter Summaries & Analysis, Characters, Objects/Places, Themes, Style, Quotes, and Topics for › Shop › Books.

The Death of Woman Wang, by Jonathan Spence is a historical novel pertaining to average people living in northeastern China. Spence’s book is unlike the “typical” social Confucian society China was thought to resemble during the seventeenth

An analysis of the book the death of woman wang by jonathan spence
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