In recent years, some scholars in China have called for Chinese Christians to zhongguohua 中国化 (become more Chinese), a process that might be expressed in English by less-common words like “sinicization” or “sinofication.” Indeed, zhongguohua has become part of the party-state’s religious policy and is actively reinforced through new regulations. Even though the presence of Christianity in China can be traced back to the seventh century ce or even earlier, many people, including scholars, continue to depict Christianity in China as a foreign or nontraditional religion. When people use the term “foreign religion” (yangjiao 洋教) to describe Christianity, it is usually coupled with an ideology-driven discourse demanding more zhongguohua. The notion that Christianity is a “nontraditional religion” (fei chuantong zongjiao 非传统宗教), on the other hand, has some validity. First, Christians remain a numerical minority in Chinese societies and in most of the diasporic communities. Second, many Chinese Christians are first-generation converts or children of these converts. Therefore, it is reasonable to ask: How Chinese are Chinese Christians today? This question is actually susceptible to two very different interpretations. First, to what degree are Chinese Christians Chinese? Second, in what ways are they Chinese?The articles in this issue can be
Review of Religion and Chinese Society – Brill
Published: Apr 27, 2017
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