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Friday, November 30, 2018 at 3:30pm to 5:30pm
Rockefeller Hall, Asian Studies Lounge
Topic: "A Unique Eunuch Document of the late Qianlong Reign"
The fourth and final Cornell Classical Chinese Colloquium of the Fall 2018 semester will be given by Professor Norman Kutcher from Syracuse University on Friday, November 30 3:30-5:30 in the Asian Studies Lounge of Rockefeller Hall.
Description: In 1788, the Qianlong emperor ordered his chief minister Hešen to investigate the case of Eunuch Wang Jinxi, who absconded to pursue a series of romantic trysts with men outside the palace. In this workshop we will conduct a close reading of Hešen’s investigation and report to Qianlong, to better understand the lives of late eighteenth-century Chinese eunuchs and to shed light on the emperor’s enigmatic relationship with his most notorious official.
At each session one participant presents a text in classical or literary Chinese. Attendees discuss historical, literary, linguistic, and all other aspects of the text, and work together to resolve difficulties in comprehension and translation. Presentations include works of all sorts, from the earliest times to the twentieth century.
No preparation required: all texts will be distributed at the meeting
Norman Kutcher is a historian of late imperial and modern China, and is particularly interested in the Qing dynasty (1644–1911). He is the author of Mourning in Late Imperial China: Filial Piety and the State (Cambridge University Press, 1999) and of Eunuch and Emperor in the Great Age of Qing Rule (University of California Press, 2018).