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Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies


The Chinese religious landscape has undergone tremendous transformations under socialism in the past six decades or so. How do we understand the mechanisms and processes of these transformations? One of the most important things to keep in mind while trying to answer this question is to understand religious traditions as always changing and transforming, therefore we should not posit a pre-revolutionary past that was unchanging or can serve as a stable reference point. Another thing to keep in mind is that changes in the religious landscape are more often than not resulting from broader changes in society (e.g. economic reform, urbanisation, transnationalism, etc.) rather than state religious policies. Key themes explored include: the politics of legitimation, the emergence of the temple boss as local elite, local temple activism, the interactions between local state agents and local temple communities, the re-emergence of household-based provision and consumption of ritual services, etc. Dr Chau has published several works on this theme. 

Faculty Researchers