Female Scholar Elaborates Aesthetics in Chinese Poetry

June 29, 2018
Editor: Xie Wen
Female Scholar Elaborates Aesthetics in Chinese Poetry
Meng Man [Cntv.cn]


Chinese scholar and professor Meng Man, from the College of History and Culture at the Minzu University of China, was recently invited to an interview to talk about her speech, Women Are with The Poems.

Meng has always been committed to the popularization of traditional Chinese culture. She believes that poetry plays an important role in traditional Chinese culture, for it provides people with a basic understanding of aesthetics. It's also good for people to live an exquisite life starting by reading poetry.

In January 2017, Meng became a judge on a program of CCTV (Central China Television), The Chinese Poetry Conference, when she observed that Chinese people really love their culture.

"It does not matter whether you win or lose. What is important is that people from all walks of life are all participating in this competition. You can see not only college and middle school students, but also elderly people aged 70-80, even people of ethnic minorities and the food delivery profession there. The most important reason for this program being so popular for several years is the fact that it’s rooted in the spirituality of Chinese people," said Meng.

"There are so many cultures with different cultural symbols in the world, but only in China is the collection of poetry considered a moral and cultural classic, because the early childhood education for people here starts from teaching poetry for its high position and universality. This spirit of poetry plays a crucial role in the overall shaping of Chinese culture, which leads Chinese people to produce a relatively concise way of thinking while the expression is vague."

"With the rapid development of China, people are increasingly eager to get rid of low-level pursuits. It is necessary to revalue poetry, literature and the aesthetic of Chinese culture," Meng stated.

Speaking of her previous speech, Meng said that women were more likely to be entangled with daily tasks than men, but women have never lost their ability to appreciate poetry.

Women are most involved in poetry among all kinds of art creations. Aside from philosophers and historians, there are many writers and poets who are women, such as Li Qingzhao and Qiu Jin. Due to the fact that in ancient times, historical and philosophical work could not be completed in fragmented time, they found a different way to show their talents through composing poetry. Women were also the object of poetry creation. Apart from this, poetry is a gentle behavior doctrine and spiritual instruction to women, which reflects the core moral standard of ancient Chinese philosophy: doctrine of the Mean. It also represents a tradition of an unrelenting pursuit of a beautiful life.

Meng also stated that the liberation of Chinese women is a process of material satisfaction and spiritual liberation. The female labor force participation rate in China is the highest in the world. However, the material isn't omnipotent. From the perspective of equality, women must have the same strong spiritual power as material one to pursue all rights and achieve a balanced development.

(Source: Women Voice/Translated and edited by Women of China)

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