A Garden Not-Enclosed

A talk by Andrew Plaks of Princeton University and Hebrew University.

For most readers of 18th century Chinese masterwork Honglou meng (Dream of the Red Chamber), the "enclosed garden" of the Daguanyuan is a self-contained world of virginal innocence and a protected space of wealth and prestige. In the course of the novel, this space is breached from within—through the dynamics of human drama—and without—by the power and corruption of the "real" world. This talk focuses on three areas related to the insularity and permeability of this enclosed world: the uncertain elite position of the fictional Jia family, the internal hierarchies within the Jia compounds, and the legal prerogatives conferred by the hereditary titles and ranks of the central male characters (and their waiving in cases of impeachment for official malfeasance or outright criminal behavior). 

Sponsored by the Chinese department. Free and open to the public.


Monday, September 16, 2019 at 4:15pm to 6:00pm

Performing Arts Building, 332
3203 Southeast Woodstock Boulevard, Portland, Oregon 97202-8199

Event Type



Faculty, Students, Alumni, Open to the Public, Staff

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