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Herself an AuthorGender, Agency, and Writing in Late Imperial China$
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Grace S. Fong

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780824831868

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824831868.001.0001

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A Life in Poetry

A Life in Poetry

The Auto/biography of Gan Lirou (1743–1819)

Chapter:
(p.9) Chapter 1 A Life in Poetry
Source:
Herself an Author
Author(s):

Grace S. Fong

Publisher:
University of Hawai'i Press
DOI:10.21313/hawaii/9780824831868.003.0002

This chapter explores the meaning and function of the autobiographical impulse that underlies much of women's textual production and its relation to biographical representation. It points to women's desire and effort to carve out a place for themselves in family, social, or cultural memory through writing, a theme which will be encountered in subsequent chapters. Women acted on the knowledge that they could bring about recognition and remembrance through the imprint of their own words. Specifically, this chapter presents a common pattern of self-writing in the paradigmatic, autobiographically conceived collection of poetry and prose by Gan Lirou (1743–1819), the Yongxuelou gao (Drafts from the Pavilion for Chanting about Snow).

Keywords:   autobiography, biographical representation, Gan Lirou, self-writing, family memory, social memory, cultural memory, Yongxuelou gao, prose, poetry

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