Daughter’s Property Rights and Its Social Significance: A Comparative Study between China and Korea in the 15-18 Century

Mei Zhu, Sun Yat-sen University

From the Song Dynasty to the Qing Dynasty, with the infiltration of Neo-Confucianism, the property rights of women have undergone very complicated historical changes. One of the major changes was that in the early Ming Dynasty, the law imposed compulsory heirs of nephews, that is, families without heirs had to adopt an heir from their nephews. This change has severely deprived women’s property rights. Korean intellectuals who accept Neo-Confucianism regard Neo-Confucianism as the ruling idea of Joseon Dynasty. Whether the property rights of women in Joseon have changed accordingly? In most common situation, women have a relationship with property as a daughter or widow. This paper will investigate the change of property rights of daughters in China and Korea through the relevant law text and documents of property inheritance in the 15-18 century. In addition, explore its social significance from the perspective of comparative history.

No extended abstract or paper available

 Presented in Session 165. Bringing Women Back into the History of Joseon (Korea) in Comparative Perspective