Student Videos

Exhibit Intro | Student Videos

For their project, students read excerpts from the Dream of the Red Chamber, composed by Cao Xuegin. Written in the middle of the 18th century during the Qing dynasty, this text is considered one of the most famous novels of Chinese fiction. The main characters in the Dream of the Red Chamber (chapter 38) wrote 12 poems to celebrate the life cycle of chrysanthemums, which spans for 3 months of autumn. In the novel, it says, “All three months of autumn condensed into a single sequence of a dozen poems.” (Cao Xueqin, trans. by David Hawkes, pp. 237-38). Students were asked to choose one of the 12 poems and to select a chrysanthemum from past mum shows which they felt embodied the poem. Through their analysis, presented in video form below, students investigated how the mum’s characteristics and growth habit contributed to multiple symbolic meanings in literary works, cultural significance, and philosophical traditions. 

"Remembering the Chrysanthemums", analysis by Nicole Huang ’22
 Remembering the Chrysanthemums by Nicole Huang '22

"Admiring the Chrysanthemums", analysis by Caty Maloney ’22 
 "Admiring the Chrysanthemums", analysis by Caty Maloney ’22

"Arranging the Chrysanthemums", analysis by Emily Paule ’22
 "Arranging the Chrysanthemums", analysis by Emily Paule ’22

"Painting the Chrysanthemum", analysis by Doris Tang ’21
 "Painting the Chrysanthemum", analysis by Doris Tang ’21

"Questioning the Chrysanthemums", analysis by Hongtong Lin ’23J
 "Questioning the Chrysanthemums", analysis by Hongtong Lin ’23J

"The Shadow of the Chrysanthemums", analysis by Ellen Dong ’22
 "The Shadow of the Chrysanthemums", analysis by Ellen Dong ’22

"The Dream of the Chrysanthemums", analysis by Fubin Song ’22
 "The Dream of the Chrysanthemums", analysis by Fubin Song ’22

"The Death of the Chrysanthemum", analysis by Andrea Solis ’22J
 "The Death of the Chrysanthemum", analysis by Andrea Solis ’22J