Christianity in China: From the Eighteenth Century to the Present

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“This work is unique in that it subjects the history of Christianity in China to rigorous historical investigation. No other work on the subject can compare even remotely with it in depth and breadth of documentation and in analysis. The papers all reflect original research in sources seldom or never used before, and they are as much concerned with social history as with religious history. The volume is a benchmark work on Christian life in China in the context of a changing indigenous society.”—K. C. Liu, University of California, Davis
“Unique in that it subjects the history of Christianity in China to rigorous historical investigation. . . . A benchmark work.”—K.C. Liu, University of California, Davis

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780804736510
  • Publisher: Stanford University Press
  • Publication date: 3/28/1999
  • Edition description: 1
  • Pages: 508
  • Product dimensions: 6.02 (w) x 8.97 (h) x 1.08 (d)

Meet the Author

Daniel H. Bays is Professor of History at the University of Kansas.

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Table of Contents

Pt. I Christianity and the Dynamics of Qing Society 1
1 Catholics and Society in Eighteenth-Century Sichuan 8
2 Catholic Converts in Jiangxi Province: Conflict and Accommodation, 1860-1900 24
3 Rural Religion and Village Organization in North China: The Catholic Challenge in the Late Nineteenth Century 41
4 Twilight of the Gods in the Chinese Countryside: Christians, Confucians, and the Modernizing State, 1861-1911 53
5 Christian Missionary as Confucian Intellectual: Gilbert Reid (1857-1927) and the Reform Movement in the Late Qing 73
6 The Politics of Evangelism at the End of the Qing: Nanchang, 1906 91
Pt. II Christianity and Ethnicity 115
7 From Barbarians to Sinners: Collective Conversion Among Plains Aborigines in Qing Taiwan, 1859-1895 120
8 Christianity and the Hua Miao: Writing and Power 138
9 Christianity and Hakka Identity 158
Pt. III Christianity and Chinese Women 175
10 Christian Virgins in Eighteenth-Century Sichuan 180
11 Chinese Women and Protestant Christianity at the Turn of the Twentieth Century 194
12 "Cradle of Female Talent": The McTyeire Home and School for Girls, 1892-1937 209
13 "An Oasis in a Heathen Land": St. Hilda's School for Girls, Wuchang, 1928-1936 228
14 Christianity, Feminism, and Communism: The Life and Times of Deng Yuzhi 243
Pt. IV The Rise of an Indigenous Chinese Christianity 263
15 Karl Gutzlaff's Approach to Indigenization: The Chinese Union 269
16 Contextualizing Protestant Publishing in China: The Wenshe, 1924-1928 292
17 The Growth of Independent Christianity in China, 1900-1937 307
18 Toward Independence: Christianity in China Under the Japanese Occupation, 1937-1945 317
19 Y. T. Wu: A Christian Leader Under Communism 338
20 Holy Spirit Taiwan: Pentecostal and Charismatic Christianity in the Republic of China 353
App. A Project Grants 369
App. B Project Symposia 372
Notes 377
Works Cited 427
Character List 457
Index 463
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This pathbreaking volume will force a reassessment of many common assumptions about the relationship between Christianity and modern China. The overall thrust of the twenty essays is that despite the conflicts and tension that often have characterized relations between Christianity and China, in fact Christianity has been, for the past two centuries or more, putting down roots within Chinese society, and it is still in the process of doing so. Thus Christianity is here interpreted not just as a Western religion that imposed itself on China, but one that was becoming a Chinese religion, as Buddhism did centuries ago.
Eschewing the usual focus on foreign missionaries, as is customary, this research effort is China-centered, drawing on Chinese sources, including government and organizational documents, private papers, and interviews. The essays are organized into four major sections: Christianity’s role in Qing society, including local conflicts (6 essays); ethnicity (3 essays); women (5 essays); and indigenization of the Christian effort (6 essays). The editor has provided sectional introductions to highlight the major themes in each section, as well as a general Introduction.

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