Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Emperor Wu Zhao and Her Pantheon of Devis, Divinities, and Dynastic Mothers$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Norman Rothschild

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780231169387

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231169387.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM COLUMBIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.columbia.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Minnesota Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CUPSO for personal use.date: 21 June 2021

Four Exemplary Women in Wu Zhao’s Regulations for Ministers

Four Exemplary Women in Wu Zhao’s Regulations for Ministers

Chapter:
(p.124) Seven Four Exemplary Women in Wu Zhao’s Regulations for Ministers
Source:
Emperor Wu Zhao and Her Pantheon of Devis, Divinities, and Dynastic Mothers
Author(s):

N. Harry Rothschild

Publisher:
Columbia University Press
DOI:10.7312/columbia/9780231169387.003.0007

This chapter examines how Wu Zhao and her rhetoricians skillfully marshaled four widowed mothers, lifted from Biographies for Exemplary Women, to the empress' considerable advantage: Lady Ji of Lu, the mother of Mencius, the mother of General Zifa of the state of Chu, and the mother of General Zhao Kuo. All four women appeared in one of Wu Zhao's extant writings from a later stage of her political career, a political treatise titled Regulations for Ministers. Wu Zhao did not style herself as the latter-day incarnation of these exemplary women, but instead lent her authorial voice of moral instruction to the illumination of these past models of perfect deportment, projecting them as cynosures for women of her era to emulate. Implicitly, this suggested that she possessed, internalized, and served as arbiter of those prized Confucian virtues: she was chaste, filial, benign, wise, austere, modest, obedient, and righteous. During Wu Zhao's tenure as empress, textual reinforcement of these sanctioned behaviors served to represent her as an ardent champion of Confucian values.

Keywords:   mothers, Wu Zhao, empress, Lady Ji, Mencius, General Zifa, General Zhao Kuo, Regulations for Ministers, women, Confucian virtues

Columbia Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .