Chapter

Prologue: A Righteous Husband Plays the Politics of the Wifely Way

Janet M. Theiss

in Disgraceful Matters

Published by University of California Press

Published in print October 2005 | ISBN: 9780520240339
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520930667 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520240339.003.0005
Prologue: A Righteous Husband Plays the Politics of the Wifely Way

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In 1768, an aspiring literatus named Chen Shiwan of Jintan County, Jiangsu, stabbed his wife, Gao Shi, to death and was sentenced perfunctorily to strangulation after the assizes. At the heart of the marital conflict was Shiwan's claim that Gao Shi had abrogated the most sacred duty encompassed in the “wifely way” (fudao) by refusing to pay proper respects to his parents and continually fighting with them. The case elucidates the workings of family and local politics surrounding a woman's alleged violation of gender norms.

Keywords: wifely way; fuado; Chen Shiwan; Gao Shi; marital conflict; gender norms

Chapter.  2675 words. 

Subjects: Asian History

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