Actors and Patrons

Wenqing Kang

in Obsession

Published by Hong Kong University Press

Published in print March 2009 | ISBN: 9789622099807
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9789882207233 | DOI:
Actors and Patrons

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The announcement released by the Central Police Office of the Beijing Outer City on April 20, 1912, signified a shift in the meaning of male same-sex relations between Peking Opera actors and literati. Prior to the shift, men who patronized these male actors were initially regarded to be of high-class and have refined taste. After the shift, however, the practice was perceived to be unacceptable for the new republic. This literati-actor sexual relations practice had to be stopped because it represented a threat to contaminate the nation's body politic, as well as provide a reason for foreigners to express contempt. Eradicating the practice is believed to have contributed in building China's subsequent strong image. This chapter illustrates the rise and fall of the popularity of xianggong as forms of entertainment.

Keywords: Peking Opera actors; literati; xianggong; entertainers; high-class; refined taste

Chapter.  14433 words. 

Subjects: Society and Culture

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