Chapter

Portrait of a woman

Grant Hayter-Menzies

in The Empress and Mrs. Conger

Published by Hong Kong University Press

Published in print January 2011 | ISBN: 9789888083008
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9789882207554 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5790/hongkong/9789888083008.003.0070
Portrait of a woman

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Katherine Augusta Carl was an artist who painted the portrait of Der Ling, daughter of Lady Yu. The portrait helped convince Cixi to allow Kate to paint her own portrait. What happened to Kate Carl, however, was much the same process as that which was transforming Sarah into an admirer and defender of China and the Chinese. As Kate was trying on the court gowns Cixi had had made for her, learning to use chopsticks and the Chinese language, exposing herself to the music, theatre, and ceremonials of Cixi's court, and studying the elderly woman whom she had come to paint and ended up adoring, Sarah was moving forward with her own larger project. It was an adjunct to the portrait: of building as many bridges between her world and that of Chinese women as she could and as they would allow.

Keywords: Katherine Augusta Carl; Der Ling; Lady Yu; portrait; Cixi

Chapter.  7336 words. 

Subjects: Asian History

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