This book is a study of the thematic, narrative, and musical structure of
Yuanqu xuan [A Selection of Yuan Plays] edition of the Yuan
zaju (variety play)
Dou E yuan [Injustice to Dou E] originally composed by the highly regarded playwright Guan Hanqing (fl. 1260). Although other authors have studied these three aspects of
Dou E yuan separately, this is the first comprehensive treatment of the topic as a scholarly monograph in English. Yumin Ao’s analysis is based on the edition of the play in the
Yuanqu xuan [A Selection of Yuan Plays] compiled by the Ming publisher Zang Maoxun (ca. 1550–1620). Ao proposes that
Dou E yuan, as a dramatic narrative which develops through its enactment on the stage rather than by verbal presentation as a story, displays its integrative structure of narration through its thematic development and within its musical conventions.