Program

Comparative Perspectives on Chinese Culture and Society , American Research in the Humanities in China

Project

Community and Religion in Rural Northern China

Project

The Revival of Communal Religion in Rural Northern China

Department

Philosophy and Religion

Community and Religion in Rural Northern China

The Revival of Communal Religion in Rural Northern China

This project studies the continuity and change in village communal religion in premodern and present-day China. Rural China has experienced a significant religious revival in the past three decades. To explore this revival, this project utilizes a case study that involves a historical cult of the Daoist (Taoist) saintly immortal, Lady Wei Huacun (251-334 AD), in a rural community in north China. The analysis first focuses on the multiplicity of religious symbolism. Various social groups, such as village-level activists, religious specialists, and state agents, contest with each other in appropriating Lady Wei cultural-religious symbols. Second, it explores the leadership of women in the rival of Lady Wei worship.