New meaning in traditional wedding dresses – Xiu He Fu and Long Feng Gua – in contemporary China / Li Yuling

Li , Yuling (2019) New meaning in traditional wedding dresses – Xiu He Fu and Long Feng Gua – in contemporary China / Li Yuling. Masters thesis, University of Malaya.

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      Chinese traditional wedding dresses have a long history, they are auspicious symbols for Chinese women. Embroidered decorative and symbolic elements on wedding dresses, represent well wishes for marriage, such as lasting marriage, more sons, more happiness. Although the Western white wedding dress has crossed cultures and many modern Chinese women wear them on their wedding day, the traditional Chinese dresses have re-emerged at the end of the 20th and early 21st century.1 The Chinese traditional wedding dresses have recently become popular again in wedding ceremonies, especially the type of xiu he fu秀禾服 and long feng gua龙凤褂.2 However, this research argue that the traditional wedding dresses have changed in contemporary time, particularly the meaning of them for contemporary Chinese women are different. Because dresses in different situations will represent different identities. When the time, situation or context change, the representation also changes. This study will investigate the new meaning found on these traditional wedding dresses. Iconological study of the symbols in history as well as the context of historical and contemporary traditional wedding dresses will be used to investigate the changes in Chinese gender and national identity. Much literatures record the images and context of symbolic patterns on Chinese folk dresses; also the symbolic meaning of embroidered patterns in the past have been recorded, for example, lotus/lian 莲 means purity. However, we do not have researches that specifically look at contemporary Chinese women's identities through the symbols on Chinese traditional wedding dresses. This research will study the embroidered decorations on contemporary traditional wedding dresses as more than superficial beautifying decorations, but as new symbolic representations of the contemporary Chinese women. In a word, this research will relate the Chinese gender and national identity with representation of Chinese traditional wedding dresses in contemporary time. It is in order to analysis that the new meaning of Chinese traditional wedding dresses for women is to express their contemporary Chinese identity, this Chinese identity includes that “the Chinese” national identity and the gender identity of women being part of Chinese nation.

      Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
      Additional Information: Dissertation (M.A.) – Cultural Centre, University of Malaya, 2019.
      Uncontrolled Keywords: Xiu He Fu; Long Feng Gua; Chinese traditional wedding dresses; Chinese identity
      Subjects: N Fine Arts > N Visual arts (General) For photography, see TR
      Divisions: Cultural Centre
      Depositing User: Mr Mohd Safri Tahir
      Date Deposited: 13 Jul 2020 04:45
      Last Modified: 13 Jul 2020 04:45

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