Together, and for the first time in any language, the 24 essays gathered in these volumes provide a composite picture of the history of religion in ancient China from the emergence of writing ca. 1250 BC to the collapse of the first major imperial dynasty in 220 AD. It is a multi-faceted tale of changing gods and rituals that includes the emergence of a form of “secular humanism” that doubts the existence of the gods and the efficacy of ritual and of an imperial orthodoxy that founds its legitimacy on a distinction between licit and illicit sacrifices. Written by specialists in a variety of disciplines, the essays cover such subjects as divination and cosmology, exorcism and medicine, ethics and self-cultivation, mythology, taboos, sacrifice, shamanism, burial practices, iconography, and political philosophy.
Produced under the aegis of the Centre de recherche sur les civilisations chinoise, japonaise et tibétaine (UMR 8155) and the École Pratique des Hautes Études (Paris).
A follow-up to
Early Chinese Religion (Brill, 2009-10),
Modern Chinese Religion focuses on the third period of paradigm shift in Chinese cultural and religious history, from the Song to the Yuan (960-1368 AD). As in the earlier periods, political division gave urgency to the invention of new models that would then remain dominant for six centuries. Defining religion as “value systems in practice”, this multi-disciplinary work shows the processes of rationalization and interiorization at work in the rituals, self-cultivation practices, thought, and iconography of elite forms of Buddhism, Daoism, and Confucianism, as well as in medicine. At the same time, lay Buddhism, Daoist exorcism, and medium-based local religion contributed each in its own way to the creation of modern popular religion.
With contributions by Juhn Ahn, Bai Bin, Chen Shuguo, Patricia Ebrey, Michael Fuller, Mark Halperin, Susan Huang, Dieter Kuhn, Nap-yin Lau, Fu-shih Lin, Pierre Marsone, Matsumoto Kôichi, Joseph McDermott, Tracy Miller, Julia Murray, Ong Chang Woei, Fabien Simonis, Dan Stevenson, Curie Virag, Michael Walsh, Linda Walton, Yokote Yutaka, Zhang Zong
From the fifth century BC to the present and dealing with the Three Teachings (Confucianism, Daoism, and Buddhism) as well as popular religion, this introduction to the eight-volume
Early and Modern Chinese Religion explores key ideas and events in four periods of paradigm shift in the intertwined histories of Chinese religion, politics, and culture. It shows how, in the Chinese church-state, elite processes of rationalization, interiorization, and secularization are at work in every period of major change and how popular religion gradually emerges to a position of dominance by means of a long history of at once resisting, adapting to, and collaborating with elite-driven change. Topics covered include ritual, scripture, philosophy, state policy, medicine, sacred geography, gender, and the economy. It also serves as the basis for an on-line Coursera course.
The last of four two-volume sets on the key periods of paradigm shift in Chinese religious and cultural history, this book examines the transformation of values in China since 1850, in the “secular” realms of economics, science, medicine, aesthetics, media, and gender, and in each of the major religions (Confucianism, Buddhism, Daoism, Christianity) as well as in Marxist discourse. The nation and science are the values invoked most frequently, with the market and democracy a distant second. As in previous periods of fundamental change in Chinese history, rationalization and secularization have played central roles, but interiorization nearly disappears as a driving force. Also in continuity with the past, the state insists on an exclusive right to define and adjudicate orthodoxy.
Contributors include: Daniel H. Bays, Sébastien Billioud, Adam Yuet Chau, Na Chen, Philip Clart, Walter B. Davis, Arif Dirlik, Thomas David DuBois, Lizhu Fan, David Faure, Melissa Wei-Tsing Inouye, Ji Zhe, Xiaofei Kang, Eric I. Karchmer, André Laliberté, Angela Ki Che Leung, Xun Liu, Richard Madsen, David Ownby, Ellen Oxfeld, Volker Scheid, Grace Yen Shen, Michael Szonyi, Wang Chien-ch’uan, Xue Yu