The Varieties of Confucian Experience

Documenting a Grassroots Revival of Tradition


Although the development of a “popular” brand of Confucianism in China is today a massive phenomenon, research on the topic remains scarce. Based on fieldwork carried out by a team of scholars in different parts of the country, the ambition of The Varieties of Confucian Experience is to contribute to the limited body of ethnographic accounts that aim to document and understand the diversity of phenomena encapsulated under the label “Confucian revival” in the first two decades of the 21st century.

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Sébastien Billioud is Professor of Chinese Studies at University Paris-Diderot, Sorbonne Paris Cité. Based on a cross-disciplinary approach, his research explores the multi-faceted fates of modern and contemporary Confucianism.
"As a significant contribution to the anthropological study of Confucianism, this volume informs the reader about the degree to which Confucianism matters in contemporary Chinese society."
-Yang Chen, El Colegio de México, in Review of Religion and Chinese Society 6 (2019) 297-317

Sébastien Billioud

1 The Birth of a New Religion: The Development of The Confucian Congregation in Southeast China
Chen Na, Fan Lizhu and Chen Jinguo

2 Making a Virtue of Piety: Dizigui and the Discursive Practice of Jingkong’s Network
Ji Zhe 汲喆

3 Popular Groups Promoting “The Religion of Confucius” in the Chinese Southwest and Their Activities since the Nineteenth Century (1840–2013): An Observation Centered on Yunnan’s Eryuan County and Environs
Wang Chien-Chuan 王見川

4 Belief and Faith: The Situation and Development of Confucianism in Yunnan Province
Chung Yun-ying

5 Civil Spirituality and Confucian Piety Today: The Activities of Confucian Temples in Qufu, Taipei, and Changchun
Nakajima Takahiro

6 The Revival of Traditional Culture and Religious Experience in Modern Urban Life: The Example of the Changchun Confucius Temple
Ishii Tsuyoshi

7 Contemporary Confucius Temples Life in Mainland China: Report from the Field
Anna Sun

8 Rites Bridging the Ancient and Modern: The Revival of Offerings at Urban Ancestral Temples
Chen Bisheng

9 An Adventure Called “Sishu”: The Tensions and Vagaries of a “Holistic” Educational Experience (zhengti jiaoyu) in Today’s Rural China
Guillaume Dutournier and Wang Yuchen

10 Confucian Revival and the Media: The CCTV “Lecture Room” Program
Fabrice Dulery

Students and scholars interested in Chinese religions, contemporary Chinese culture and the transformations of Chinese society.
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