It is strange to modern people to see a white-haired old lady reflect on her life in a lonely way. Because women of old age of past are almost completely forgotten to us now to the question of whether they were actually alive or not. However, with the development of women’s culture in the early Qing and lately Ming, they walked out of the painting and talked about themselves, and watched their old age without qualms.
This study covered works of XuYuan(徐媛), ShenYiXiu(沈宜修), GuRuoPo(顧若璞), ShangJingLan(商景蘭) and LiYin(李因) among female poets who continued their work until old age in the Jiangnan(江南)area of the Ming Dynasty. Based on various examples in this paper, we tried to reconstruct the sentiments and consciousness of the old woman in the traditional period. It covered their daily lives and emotions, followed by their attitude toward life and death, centered on monody(悼亡詩), and finally, a poem of reflection on life.
In doing so, we looked at the differences between women’s old age and men’s age, and ultimately how they managed to cope with their old age and what the message was for us.