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Luxi

The works of Li Qingzhao

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realmayo

Those guys deserve a medal for making their stuff free to read. I am really looking forward to Paul Rouzer's translations of Wang Wei later this year.

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Luxi
52 minutes ago, realmayo said:

Those guys deserve a medal

Agree!

I've been looking forward to Li He's volume but it's been put back till 2020. Never mind, Wang Wei will be a good one

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Jim
1 hour ago, Luxi said:

can't see any Chinese texts anywhere in the downloadable epub.

Just downloaded it and opened it in Calibre (that ebook manager as I'm sure you know) and it's got Chinese for me. Thanks for the great link!

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Luxi

Thanks @Jim , I found the Chinese text in the epub now! Using Edge to open the epub, the Chinese texts appear inserted in the Introduction (at around 25%) and don't even figure in the Table of Contents. In the pdf files, Chinese and translation are in contiguous pages and can be read face to face.

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Bibu

@Luxi Thanks for sharing, I downloaded it as well.

 

A quick review of the preview of the book , basically it is the background of Li Qingzhao, which is essential for classic literature per the classic Chinese literacy review method: 知人论世, This is from 孟子, which is still works today. 钱钟书has argued this by a joke: if you ate a delicious egg, no bother to know the hen. While I do not think that is the case, especially for classic literature.

 

Mrs. Li was known by her delicacy and subtle , mainly on love and daily life. mostly happiness life in early days , followed 2nd half of life  is more of bitterness. The turning point is 渡江-crossing Yangtze river and her husband death. If that is the conclusion, it is a bit too easy. The key to interpret the turning point is the poem 夏日绝句 or 乌江 in the book. I had a video on this one as well.

 

夏日绝句sounds like an oath,  or even a curse, with the most strong voice and masculine wording,  not like other of Li Qingzhao ,not like of a female, not like a Chinese, as indirect  expression is fundamental in Chinese classic literature, the more important , the most  key issues, the more indirect the expression should be.

 

For the part of 知人论世, the Song GOV was retreating to south at the moment, the elite of Song dynasty like Mrs. Li  and her family feels bitterness as well as patriotic. Her husband Mr. Zhao was governing 建康 city (Nangjing city today) to serve the gov. Anyhow, Mr. Zhao fled upon a riot, without doing any of his duty. 

 

Mrs. Li fled with her husband as well, with embarrassment, shame, and more of  fury I think, wrote the masterpiece 夏日绝句, an utmost blaming to his beloved husband.A second review of the poem, it is like to saying: why not you go to death , like the great hero Xiang Yu. This kind of poem could  never be wrote , it is by the heaven's will and via Mrs. Li's hand(妙笔天成).

 

Very obviously, Mrs. Li 's love to her husband  changed significantly afterwards. Her second marriage could be the reflection of this change over. For an elite woman in Song dynasty,  marriage again is  far from normal, especially she is not for money, neither love.

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