Past ASN Conference Papers

“American Mulan: Powerful and Powerless”

By Zhao Gengcheng, Beijing Foreign Studies University, 2010

Zhao compares and contrasts The Woman Warrior, a serious novel, and Mulan, a popular cartoon movie, to deduce how Americans depict the role of women in Chinese society. The paper deals with two schools of thought: one arguing that the novel and film exploits Orientalism, stigmatizes China and distorts traditional Chinese folk lore. While the other school values the cultural integration of both Chinese and American elements while seeking to promote gender equality. Zhao also analyses the role of women in these Mulan stories, asserting that despite the power Mulan possesses, the female is still less powerful than men in society.