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Tan, Tian Yuan (2009) 'Shixu zhi kangheng: Wang Jiusi quzuo zhong de liangzhong guiyin (Contending with Displacement: Two Forms of Retirement in Wang Jiusi’s Songs and Drama).' Xiju Yanjiu=Journal of Theater Studies (3). (Forthcoming)

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After his official career imploded, Wang Jiusi (1468-1551) participated actively in qu writing and later became one of the major qu writers in the mid Ming. Focusing on his qu writings, including both sanqu and drama, this paper explores how Wang Jiusi coped with his displacement from the political and cultural center through his literary pursuits. Retirement is a major theme in Wang Jiusi’s qu writings. Wang’s representation of retirement shows distinct characteristics from the Yuan and Ming sanqu and drama on the same theme. Furthermore, his sanqu and drama also depict two different forms of retirement respectively. In his sanqu, Wang celebrated the joy of retirement, but he could only do so in the capacity of a dismissed official. The triumph of the world of withdrawal and retirement over the world of chaos and power politics is only achieved after Wang had already been rejected from his official career. By contrast, instead of being dismissed, Du Fu was promoted to the post of Hanlin Academician in the drama Gujiu youchun. Du Fu, in the fictional world of the drama, eventually chooses to retire, a power that neither he nor Wang Jiusi enjoyed in reality. The fictional form of drama has situated the protagonist and the author in a more powerful and subversive position with full control of their own destiny, and has created a more ideal path to retirement.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: Wang Jiusi Mid Ming Sanqu Drama Retirement
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > Department of East Asian Languages & Cultures
Legacy Departments > Faculty of Languages and Cultures > Department of the Languages and Cultures of China and Inner Asia
Date Deposited: 10 Feb 2009 09:47

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