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Calvin In Missionary Memory And Chinese Protestant Identity

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Chapter Summary

This chapter maps the location of John Calvin in missionary and Chinese Christian identity, charting his move from communal patriarch through his diverse appropriation by nineteenth and twentieth century China missionaries, and finally into contemporary Chinese Protestantism. Scholars have conducted comparatively few studies of Chinese literature-even missionary-produced Chinese literature- during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. For most of the missionaries we have read, use of Calvin is primarily a literary device, meant to support or affirm a particular argument. Substantive analyses of Calvin are almost entirely lacking. Even focused attention was quite rare, and Calvin does not appear to have been celebrated at centennials in China as he was elsewhere. This chapter has showed how Calvin himself often functioned as a sign of continuity.

Keywords: China missionaries; Chinese Christian identity; Chinese Protestantism; John Calvin



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