南北朝民歌 Folk Songs of the Northern and Southern Dynasties
The one hundred years from the fall of the Eastern Jin (317-420 AD) to the founding of the Sui Dynasty (581-618 AD) was a period of confrontation between two powers, one in the north and the other in the south. This period is known in Chinese history as the Northern and Southern dynasties (421-581 AD).
Folk songs of the Northern and Southern dynasties were created orally by people in the wake of Yuefu songs.
Songs of this genre are mostly love songs. It is worth noting that most were created by women. Ode to Xizhou is a representative work that describes a young woman missing her man in the four seasons of the year. The language used in these songs is refreshing and natural. Punsa are often used, which show the powerful imagination of authors. To date, about 500 folk songs of the Northern and Southern Dynasties have been preserved.
Folk songs of the Northern Dynasty were mostly created by ethnic groups and reflected the society and their lives. As the Northern Dynasty was riven by wars, most folk songs had something to do with this aspect. The long narrative poem Mulan Ci is the best-known work of that period. It praises the heroine Mulan who, disguised as a man, joins the army on behalf of her father and wins great merit on the battlefield. In a feudal society in which women were regarded as inferior to men, this poem had its special significance. It has maintained its great popularity and has been adapted for the screen and stage. Folk songs of the Northern Dynasty are vigorous in style, with a simple, plain language in sharp contrast to that of folk songs of the Southern Dynasty.
Folk songs of the Northern and Southern dynasties had great influence on poets of the Tang Dynasty (618-907 AD).