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Women in Traditional Chinese Theater: The Heroine's Play (review)

Women in Traditional Chinese Theater: The Heroine's Play (review) 5ATJ_396-424 6/1/06 12:17 PM Page 412 Book Reviews WOMEN IN TRADITIONAL CHINESE THEATER: THE HEROINE’S PLAY. By Qian Ma. Lanham, MD: University Press of America. 2005. 315 pp. Hardcover $69.95; Paperback $39.95. Given China’s rising status in the global power structure, it is surprising how few plays from its extraordinarily rich performance traditions have been trans- lated into English. The selection of unabridged and/or newer translations is more limited still. Thus Qian Ma’s new anthology of English translations of xiqu (Chinese opera) plays is a welcome addition to existing resources. Sharing the common element of a female protagonist, the six plays are intended both as a general introduction to xiqu’s dramatic literature and as a more focused investigation of the portrayal of female characters in xiqu over several centuries. Though the first of these goals is incompletely addressed by the introductory material and included plays, the individual translations are engagingly readable and provide a fascinating overview of female characters in traditional xiqu. The collection includes five plays in the zaju (variety play) xiqu form with one or two plays representing the Yuan (1271–1368), Ming (1368 –1644), and Qing (1644–1911) dynasties. First is Injustice to Dou E (Dou E yuan), http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Asian Theatre Journal University of Hawai'I Press

Women in Traditional Chinese Theater: The Heroine's Play (review)

Asian Theatre Journal , Volume 23 (2) – Aug 17, 2006

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Publisher
University of Hawai'I Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2006 The University of Hawai'i Press.
ISSN
1527-2109

Abstract

5ATJ_396-424 6/1/06 12:17 PM Page 412 Book Reviews WOMEN IN TRADITIONAL CHINESE THEATER: THE HEROINE’S PLAY. By Qian Ma. Lanham, MD: University Press of America. 2005. 315 pp. Hardcover $69.95; Paperback $39.95. Given China’s rising status in the global power structure, it is surprising how few plays from its extraordinarily rich performance traditions have been trans- lated into English. The selection of unabridged and/or newer translations is more limited still. Thus Qian Ma’s new anthology of English translations of xiqu (Chinese opera) plays is a welcome addition to existing resources. Sharing the common element of a female protagonist, the six plays are intended both as a general introduction to xiqu’s dramatic literature and as a more focused investigation of the portrayal of female characters in xiqu over several centuries. Though the first of these goals is incompletely addressed by the introductory material and included plays, the individual translations are engagingly readable and provide a fascinating overview of female characters in traditional xiqu. The collection includes five plays in the zaju (variety play) xiqu form with one or two plays representing the Yuan (1271–1368), Ming (1368 –1644), and Qing (1644–1911) dynasties. First is Injustice to Dou E (Dou E yuan),

Journal

Asian Theatre JournalUniversity of Hawai'I Press

Published: Aug 17, 2006

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