This is anessay. If you are knowledgeable and willing to use course materials, please make an offer. Topics: ONE of the following three topics: TOPIC 1: The Great Tang-Song Transformation Convention describes the Song dynasty as a “turning point” in Chinese history. Prior to this era, an aristocratic culture placed more value on bloodline than ability and the apex of society embraced only a small number of old families. In addition, economic activity and urbanization were rather modest in the Tang while government institutions were also limited in this time. However, compared to the Tang, the Song had become a brilliant and innovative age characterized by rapid economic growth as well as social and cultural changes. These changes include the expansion of civil-service examinations, the rising prominence of scholar-officials, the rise of Neo-Confucianism, re-definition of gendered space, thriving artistic and literary achievements, and an affluent urban culture. Please write an essay to elaborate some of the above-mentioned aspects to illustrate the new developments during the Tang-Song Transformation. TOPIC 2: The Encounter with Fox Spirits Fox stories such as the Tang story “Miss Jen” (posted on BrightSpace) provide an important clue to the history of Chinese views of sexuality and the sensual side of love. However, in his Strange Tales from Make-Do Studio, Pu Songling presents a memorable portrait gallery of individualized fox characters. Apparently, sexuality is not the entirety of the fox tradition: under Pu’s writing brush, foxes play important role as popular deities, aspiring immortals, romantic heroines, and intelligent friends. Based on the three fox stories you have read this semester (Miss Jen; Ma Jiefu and Hengnian), examine how the portrayals of Ma Jiefu and Hengniang (by Pu) as “fox-spirits” differ from the Tang fox-fairy Miss Jen? What might account for some of their differences? TOPIC 3: Our discussion of Dream of the Red Chamber follows a survey of nearly two thousand years of Chinese cultural tradition. How do you view the novel, particularly Chapter 22, in relation to some of the important themes (family; gender relations; love and perfidy; the cult of talent; religious syncretism; self and society …) we have discussed in class this semester? What points of similarity or difference do you see as reflected in the novel if compared with earlier texts you have read? What might account for some of the similarities and/or differences?