Crime and punishment in chinese mythology


New Member
Hello, everyone! It's going to be quite a long post, so I apologise in advance :) I do hope there are some Chinese myths' enthusiasts in here!

I major in Chinese studies and I'm on my final year now. As a topic of my thesis, I've chosen Chinese mythology, then narrowed it down to women's role. But after reading a few books, I've changed it to "Crime and punishment in Chinese pre-Taoism mythology". I want to analyse some crimes committed by Chinese myths' characters and the punishments that they got, possibly compare it to Confucius' ideology (after all, many of those myths were written down by him or his apprentices, so naturally they had to sneak in some of their beliefs) and finally to state, how it could influence modern Chinese society. Normally I wouldn't bother you, guys, but my thesis supervisor doesn't seem to know anything or want to help me for that matter and I'm really desperate.
The subject of my studies are the ancient gods, the old-old ones, like Pan-Gu, Nuwa with Fu-Xi, Hou-Yi with Chang'e, Huangdi and other legendary emperors and Xiwangmu, that was still a symbol of disease and punishment, not a caring goddess of longevity, as the Taoists have portrayed her :) The ones who existed only in oral tradition for many years before Taoists and Confucians edited them and wrote them down.
So, here comes my first question: is there any official name for that pantheon? Can I call it Chinese pre-Taoism mythology? I'm not sure about that because while they existed long before Taoists appeared, many of them survived until this day only because Taoists wrote them down. Is there any other name? Or any other suggestions from you?

If any of you is interested in Chinese mythology and would like to help me by simply taking a moment of their time to discuss this and some other matters connected to my thesis, I would be overjoyed :) Thanks!