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Academic Journal of Humanities & Social Sciences, 2020, 3(5); doi: 10.25236/AJHSS.2020.030508.

The Research of the Historical Context of Mencius' "Concubine's Principle"


Hongfeng Zhang1, *

Corresponding Author:
Hongfeng Zhang

1 College of Liberal Arts, Yangzhou University, Yangzhou 225002, China
*Corresponding author e-mail:[email protected]


Mencius said that taking the obedience of the husband as the right path is the principle followed by the concubine. It was also considered by many people as a discrimination against female. In fact, Mencius's remarks did not focus on female. He just borrowed such a historical fact to satirize the behavior of the strategist to obey the monarch. It is what "concubines" should do, not the "real men". Behind this sentence of Mencius, it actually implies the difference between the strategist and the Confucian in the concept of monarch and minister. The strategist regards obedience to the monarch as the way of the courtier, but the Confucianists regards the courage to admonish as the way of courtier. This difference is inseparable from the historical environment of princes' separatism, political turmoil, and frequent diplomacy.


mencius, concubine; "real men"; monarchs and ministers

Cite This Paper

Hongfeng Zhang. The Research of the Historical Context of Mencius' "Concubine's Principle". Academic Journal of Humanities & Social Sciences (2020) Vol. 3, Issue 5: 60-66. https://doi.org/10.25236/AJHSS.2020.030508.


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