AAR Annual Meeting
November 18-21, 2017
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This seminar provides a collaborative forum for scholars of different disciplines to engage in an academic discourse about the field of Chinese Christianities. Christianity is the fastest growing religion in mainland China today, and arguably the religion of choice for a growing number of diasporic Chinese. “Chinese” is an expansive term, including mainland China proper as well as a large, linguistically, and culturally diverse diaspora, and encompassing more than a fifth of the world’s population; the Han Chinese people are sometimes described as the world’s largest ethnic group. Hence, with the increasing critical mass of Chinese Christians, there has likewise been a growing academic interest in various instantiations of Chinese Christianities, as understood across geographies (e.g., mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Southeast Asia, North America, etc.) and groupings (e.g., house and state-sanctioned churches, Catholic, Pentecostal, etc.).Chinese Christianities both transcend and hinder a number of regional, social, religious, etc. boundaries. Over the course of these five years, this seminar will offer a unique opportunity for scholars to engage and to debate the implications of the multiplicity of Chinese Christianities with regards to the boundaries they engage.
Developing the overarching theme of “Chinese Christianities” and building on the success of our first two years, this third year of the seminar will focus on various religious boundaries. We welcome papers in the following or related areas:
• Historical, social scientific, and/or theological approaches to understanding Chinese Christianities as a Chinese religion
• Lived experiences of Chinese Christianities and the embrace/rejection of other religions and philosophies (e.g., Confucianism, Buddhism, folk religion, civil religion) and/or their adherents
• Theoretical opportunities and challenges in the construction of Chinese Christian theology with Chinese religious and philosophical resources
• Explorations/critiques into the usefulness of certain theoretical engagements between Chinese Christianities and Chinese religions (e.g., multiple religious belonging, comparative theology, cross-textual hermeneutics, postcolonial criticism, etc.)