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Lady Tans Circle of Women by Lisa See PDF
PDF TitleLady Tan’s Circle of Women: A Novel
AuthorLisa See
PDF Size2 MB
PDF LanguageEnglish
No. of Pages360

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Lady Tan’s Circle of Women: A Novel Book Summary

According to Confucius, he believed that an educated woman held no value. However, Tan Yunxian, who comes from a privileged background but faces the challenges of death, separation, and loneliness, is being raised by her grandparents to be useful. Her grandmother, one of the few female doctors in China, teaches Yunxian the fundamentals of Chinese medicine. She learns the Four Examinations, which involve observing, listening, touching, and questioning—actions that are restricted for male doctors when treating female patients.

From a young age, Yunxian learns about women’s health issues, particularly those related to childbirth, alongside her friend Meiling, who is training to be a midwife. Despite societal restrictions that prevent doctors from handling blood while midwives deal with it frequently, the two girls form a deep bond and promise to support each other through life’s challenges. They believe that beauty can emerge from adversity, as the saying goes, “No mud, no lotus.”

However, when Yunxian enters an arranged marriage, her mother-in-law prohibits her from interacting with Meiling and assisting women and girls in the household. Yunxian is expected to conform to the role of a proper wife: embroidering bound-foot slippers, playing musical instruments, reciting poetry, giving birth to sons, and remaining confined within the family compound known as the Garden of Fragrant Delights.

How can a woman like Yunxian break free from these traditions, pursue her passion for treating women and girls from all walks of life, and achieve a level of significance that endures for centuries? Additionally, how does the power of friendship both support and complicate her efforts? “Lady Tan’s Circle of Women” is a captivating tale of women helping one another. It offers a triumphant reimagining of the life of an extraordinary woman from the Ming dynasty, whose accomplishments would be considered remarkable even in today’s world.

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