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Women, Gender and Religion in Modern China, 1900s-1950s: An Introduction

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Over the last several decades, there has been a voluminous amount of scholarly literature about the transformation of women and gender, as well as about the reconstruction of Chinese religions in the context of twentieth-century Chinese modernity. The relationship and intersection of these two separated fields, however, remain uncharted territory. This essay is an introduction to three studies which address this lacuna. It places these writings in the existing scholarship on themes related to women, gender, and religion, and outlines the various ways in which they bring together the two hitherto disconnected facets of academic research on women and religion in the study of modern China, with a focus on the period from the 1900s to 1950s. Together they highlight the gender dynamics of the twentieth-century construction of Chinese religions, and forge new gendered understandings of Chinese modernity.

Affiliations: 1: The George Washington University


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