Bound By: serenA, elInA, jayden, and kinser

Table of contents


Poems by Jayden Rineer

"Nameless Woman" artwork by Elina Sanchez

An interview by Kinser Smith

"Dark Eyes" artwork by Serena Tapio



Around 1800 BC, the Shang Dynasty conquered most of China and ruled under one Emperor. Most of China back then followed Confucianism which is a set of fundamentals and values that most or maybe even all of China obeyed. Most women back in ancient China were valued less than livestock and had standards to meet before they even thought about marriage. They also hung up images of important people in their homes and gates to keep away evil spirits and to bring in good fortune. Back in ancient China they even had slaves to do all their chores and all their hard work. in the book Bounded by Donna Jo Napoli she introduces situations and problems within the main character Xing Xing. She is always a hard worker helping her family out with chores. She eventually found a companion, a small koi fish. Xing Xing had lost her mother, so her father remarried to a women with a daughter named Wei Ping; later on, her father had died, so now Xing Xing doesn't have her parents to arrange her marriage.

The purpose of this magazine is to show how Ancient China reacted to different situations and rules that they had to follow for certain things such as marriage. By showing this purpose, this magazine will have creative aspects to it such as beautiful art work, interesting newscast, and deep poetry. Throughout this magazine you will find information that will peak your interest and make you want to learn even more on that topic.


By Jayden Rineer

Stone Age

man with tools of stone

fought, but not for blood or bone

land and food was what they seek

tough times for the weak

over time they learned to farm

captured were no longer put to harm

man saw what profits slaves could yield

therefore the captured were put to the field

Xia Dynasty

slavery continues through the ages

filling more and more pages

of the book we know as history

in China's bitter story

in this new bronze age

still battles they would wage

slaves were made from the captured

their safety was not ensured

they were put under a masters rule

these masters were nothing but cruel

when these masters died

the slaves were usually fried

for they believed in death before life

so slaves were sent to aid in the afterlife

they were so stubborn

they didn't think other than after death you’d be born

so the slaves where a small sacrifice

as they were treated as worthless lice

they were miserable

their lives to the capturers were unfathomable

slaves were exploited like dogs

only tools like logs

Zhou Dynasty

china entered a peaceful age

where there were no longer many wars they would wage

slaves were no longer sacrificed to the afterlife

but they instead spared their life

slaves were kept alive to work in the fields

to harness the work each of them yields

slaves were saved by small pots of clay

each could be made in a day

these clay men helped to free

slaves of the masters dieing fee

although slaves were still killed

the lack of slaves was soon filled

as there was not as much war

being conservative opened a new door

as for the slaves

they were used like a surfer with the waves

only a tool to get things done

their lives were never fun

they were trapped as if in a cage

there were still many cruel things in China's peaceful age

Nameless Woman

By Elina Sanchez

How are women in ancient China affected by arrange marriage?

I illustrated an interpretation of the affects of arrange marriage has on women in ancient China. My digital artwork was done in an application called SketchClub over a period of 4 hours and 7 minutes. I named my piece Nameless Woman. Why is I choose that name because I found that in ancient China, her name simply doesn't matter. In ancient China women were treated like objects, they were virtually worthless if they couldn't bear sons and are often sold off into slavery or thrown into the streets as newborns. If a family chose to keep their daughter they would utilize her as a money making medium. They would basically sell her off in an arrange marriage. In these times people would follow the ideals of Confucianism. Confucius taught that women's roles were to look after the men in their families. He believed that it was not acceptable for a woman to have her own ambitions and that she should have barely any life outside her own home. This directly enables an environment that shuns woman's individually and suppresses them. A marriage has a substantial influence on social stability, so only formal arranged weddings count in society. People have to go through a process of having match makers along side parents, to decide the spouse of their child according to their social status. I learned that in ancient China having bound was a status symbol, it was considered beautiful and women were priced based on how tiny their feet were. This was one of the only ways for a woman to marry into money. Most women in ancient China have to go through a horrific process called foot binding. Foot binding can start as young as 6 depending on how small the parents want their child's feet. This leaves a woman immobile she would have to be carried off by a slave. These stories translate to a character in the book Bound, whom I pick inspiration from for my artwork. In the story it very clearly describes the main characters wicked stepmother who I think represents the direct affects of arrange marriage. I drew a very pale and slender woman, which is the ideal body type during this time period because it showed that the woman was too wealthy to work in the sun. I made sure to include very abnormal and tiny feet to represent the product of years and years of foot binding. I included a bamboo cleaver such as the one that the stepmother used to cut her own daughters toes off in an effort to make her feet more attractive. I added blood to the knife spelling out, "LOVE" because the mother wasn't doing it out of love, she actually was using words like love to cover up the twisted woman society turned her into. I gave her wings of blood to represent that instead of using her wings to fly above the world, she is using them to harm and keep things precious and tangible like love, illegal. I drew her in a reversible kimono, the outer side depicts the day and the inside depicts night. I included this detail because arrange marriage doesn't seem that bad on the outside in this culture because both family's benefit from it but on the inside the woman is put through hell and is treated like a lesser being only to become cold and dark. Last thing I would like to describe is the head. I chose to have the woman decorated like a geisha she has, hair dark and slicked up into a bun adorned by ribbon, cherry blossoms, and pearls. She has a powder white face with thin black eyebrows and doll like lipstick over her wicked smile. I included bright reddish-pink blush a over her cheekbones in the shape of an oval. I chose to decorate her face like this because this is how women in ancient China would dress to go out in public especially if they were trying to look their wealthiest.


By Kinser Smith

Dark Eyes

By Serena Tapio

My artwork “Dark Eyes” represents real demons that we tried hard to keep away. In ancient China they strongly believed in evil spirits and how they do harm to them. They use charms and pictures of important people to bring in good fortune and to keep away evil spirits. For this piece I used watercolor, pencil, charcoal, and colored pencils. The splats of black, grey, and white paint is suppose to show the drying and yang or the balance of good and evil. The arms in the eye are suppose to represent the demons in ourselves trying to escape. The black tear is suppose to show the defeat and struggle in our everyday lives that we can't keep hiding away anymore.


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Created with images by Fraenkelufer - "china 2007 159" • SteFou! - "Shanghai" • SmokingPermitted - "Cosa sono? La bambina dei no" - "Soldiers" • Will Clayton - "P1020713" • llama2014020 - "china fuzhou this temple" • Peggy_Marco - "architecture asia pagoda" • Peggy_Marco - "architecture asia pagoda"

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