Comparison Of The Epic Mulan As A Chinese Woman

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2.2.1. Crossdressing

As argued above, the legendary Mulan, a paradigm of Chinese femininity, was reinvented in the cartoon as a tomboy and nonconformist. Although, the emotional impact of Mulan embracing an outfit of a male soldier and clearly going against the wishes of her whole family is moving, it has lesser effect on the audience than the original legend, in which Mulan also had an older sister and younger brother. The gesture of a younger daughter making a sacrifice for her father is the indication of her upbringing and priorities. In the ballad, Mulan takes her father 's armour, but buys the horse herself. She also leaves at dawn, with the rising sun shining on her road, almost like a symbol of a good will. In the cartoon Mulan similarly becames a man to save the life of her father, who is too sick to go to war. But in contrast to the poem, she dons her father 's armour, takes a sword in hand and leaves her home in the middle of the night, with the rain drowning out her escape. Mulan already lacks the main features that a good woman should possess, now she needs to learn the traits of a man. Fortunately for her, in this particular situation her ineptitude at being a good Chinese woman is to her merit. Firmly based in the Confucian philosophy are the foundations of the traditional man and woman of China as a polar opposites (Ebrey, n. pag.). Thanks to that, from the very beginning of her journey, Mulan was very close to her goal of pretending to be a man, even

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