;The study is “The Mother Images of Yuan Zaju”, which is based on ”Full Yuan Drama” edited by Jia-Luo Yang. The method used in this paper is known as “text reading”, include many different angles such as Chinese classical thoughts , perspective of sociology, family history and woman’s history. Research purpose is to rich the studies of Yuan Woman Image, and to shape the mother images concretely, knowing it’s uniqueness and innovations. By my research result, I found Yuan Zaju is the key watershed which made mother images from vague to concrete. We already knew that Yuan Zaju is inclusive of everything, full of human nature; and the key to have this feature because the imperial examination system was abolished, many talent people devoted to the drama creation, projected their self-solicitude into it, moreover, created more and more vivid portraits.Observe from the society factor, Mongol Yuan culture had a lot of impact on society, in particular to show as the following: class differences, social norms and laws, discipline and ritual. And these aspects indeed restricted female from the outside to inside, affected the destiny and situation of the mother figure in Yuan Zaju.
Since the mother dan plays (which means Zhengdan is a mother) can show much more mother images, this research use 13 mother dan plays as the main object, including Wang mother of "The Butterfly Dream" , Chen mother of "Chen Mother Church child", Wang sister and madam Liu of "Five Marquis feast", Li daughter of “Over the Wall”, Yang mother of "Rescue the Dutiful son", Zhang Haitang of " The Record of the Chalk Circles", Tao mother of " Haircut to Entertain Guests", Li Qian-Jiao of " Dispute of Gratitude ", She Taijun and elder royal aunt of "Xie Jinwu" , Liu mother and Zhang Sangu of "Sellers Dan", Meng mother of "Meng Mother moved Three Times", Zheng mother of "Female Bachelor", Li mother of "Check the Golden Circle", for whom as representatives of the positive mother image groups.
This paper analyzes the theme and keynote of the plays, classified as family drama, social legal case drama and other subjects, and described the significance of mother images from these themes. First of all, review and analysis mother images by the lyric and narrative literature, in order to construct the positive mother images in Yuan Zaju. These images can be divided into wise mother with bringing up her children properly, stepmother with personal loyalty to raise her children, loving mother with treating her children gentle, and other mothers with one merit.
Next, we will discuss negative mother images, the opposite for the positive mother images, which is also including four types: Strict mother with preventing children’s marriage, bawd with forcing harlots to work, stepmother with child abuse, mother without chastity and personal loyalty. These negative mother images usually appears as supporting roles, and the most typical representatives include old madam of "The Story of the Western Wing ", Li mother of "Bend of the River", Hsiao E of " Frigid Kiosk" and "The Man Return to Prison", Ma wife of " The Record of the Chalk Circles", etc. They ignored their own children’s wish, interfered children marriage; even didn’t care the motherhood. They pushed and also hurt their children, and therefore not deserving of respect status as a mother. However, more importantly is the Yuan scholars intended to represent the society problem by the dramas, no matter its from positive or negative mother images. And these issues are also what we would like to be discussed, such as taking care of children by widowed mother, the dichotomy dilemma of taking both considerations of loyalty and filial obedience for mother, fighting over the estate, and marriage for the interests. The social unrest phenomenon was due to the central plains broken families, there were many widows and orphans, and even the phenomenon of selling child, family relationships under attack; the other is the socio-economic development, people increasingly pay attention to private property, resulting in fighting over the estate and the interests of the separation of marriage and so on.
In conclusion, Yuan Zaju, as a representative of the Yuan Dynasty literature, values and contributes their mother images from the following four aspects: First, social values: positive image of the mother is not only able to change the habits increased more human relations and also the human beauty. It is a major force behind female education. Second, historical references: the official history of the women′s records is very scarce, mainly described the chaste wives and paragons. Yuan Zaju left vivid images footnote to contemporary mothers, they are also mind′s history of Yuan Scholars; it Third, the artistic image: from Liu Xiang’s "The Biographies of Women" began, mostly to emphasize female virtue, such as determined and obedient, capable and intelligent, mother images in Yuan Zaju is showing diverse personalities, including capable and intelligent, principled and righteous, tender, and even show a strong determination. At the same time, the playwright also created a lot of negative images for the contrast, to alert the world to achieve enlightenment purposes; Fourth, handed down contribution: mother dan plays of Yuan Zaju not only have a profound impact on future generations, mother Image also affected the evolution and differentiation of Dan row, so the mother roles formally appeared in the opera stage at the first time, also made a place in Chinese opera history..
In summary, the mother images of Yuan Zaju is the Yuan scholars reflection, the reflection of whole society, represents the tears from that history, just like the congealed amber, which is deserved our continued appreciation and exploration.