Religion, charity, and contested local society: Daoyuan and World Red Swastika Society in eastern Shandong, 1920-1954 /

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Bibliographic Details
Author / Creator:Chae, Jun Hyung, author.
Ann Arbor : ProQuest Dissertations & Theses, 2015
Description:1 electronic resource (281 pages)
Format: E-Resource Dissertations
Local Note:School code: 0330
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Other authors / contributors:University of Chicago. degree granting institution.
Notes:Advisors: Guy S. Alitto Committee members: Prasenjit Duara; Jacob Eyferth; Kenneth Pomeranz.
This item is not available from ProQuest Dissertations & Theses.
Dissertation Abstracts International, Volume: 77-02(E), Section: A.
Summary:This study describes Daoyuan, a syncretic popular religion that emerged after the Great War, and its charity wing, the World Red Swastika Society. Focusing on this popular religion's active involvement in public affairs from 1920 to 1954, mostly in Shandong province, it explores how this religious organization developed its networks and businesses, as well as how its syncretic belief shaped its unique religious identity. It also examines the complex relationship between religious charity and the state in modern China. Religious charity in this project focuses on charitable works by the popular religion. One of the purposes of this research is to view local popular religions as influential social actors. It also creates a vehicle for exploring the ways various charitable works by these groups served as a critical node in which religious and secular forces overlapped. Few historians mention the role of religion in the social formation of modern China. This study aims to contribute to the scholarly discussion on religion-state relations in the modern Chinese context. It is, however, neither another simple reiterated critique of secularization theory, nor a grandiose theorization of Chinese religiosities. Instead, it presents the informal religious sector as an alternative within the socio-historical context of modern China. By so doing, it challenges the secular modernity thesis, and argues that there were various ways to become modern.