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associated with women in the later
tradition, it has no specific gender
connotation in the early period.
connotation Uncertainty: relationship between
the gift-giver and the potential
If the speaker in the “Old Poem” is a man, is
the man traveling away from his home, or
is he the one left behind by a dear friend?
While the gender identity of the speaker is
ambiguous, the exact relationship between
the gift-giver and the potential recipient is
yet another source of uncertainty.
we are given the outline of a story so that we may
freely fill in our own experiences or imagination.
The story, hinted at but remaining vague, is
loosened from the framework of an individual li...
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