Chinese Opera in Visual and Material Culture

April 10-12, 2014, University of Chicago

About: Katherine

Full Name
Katherine Alexander
Area of Study: Late Imperial China BA: Beloit College, 2007 MA: University of Chicago, 2009 I began studying Chinese literature through reading the great novels and plays of the Ming and Qing. Though I still deeply enjoy them, my interests have since shifted towards late imperial Chinese popular literature and popular religion. I’m curious about the functionally literate and their potentially illiterate audiences. My dissertation examines late 19th and early 20th century baojuan (precious volumes). I seek to write a literary and cultural history of the practices of producing, reciting, and listening to these narrative texts at the close of the Qing dynasty. I also consider what their contents might reveal about changing perceptions of what it meant to be religious and virtuous. I spent AY 2012-2013 researching in Taipei, Taiwan at the Institute of Chinese Literature and Philosophy, Academia Sinica, supported by a Fulbright Student Fellowship. I am grateful to the Center for East Asian Studies, University of Chicago for granting me a Chinese Studies Dissertation Fellowship for AY 2013-2014. Dissertation (Working) Title: The Business of Being Good: Baojuan in late Qing Jiangnan

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