Danwei Model Workers
Posted by Joel Martinsen on Saturday, September 25, 2010 at 6:07 PM
The Danwei Model Worker Award is granted by Danwei editors to blogs that we feel are especially worth reading. See the full list for more fascinating material.
Li Xiangping (李向平) is a professor of the Center for Research for Religion and Peace at Shanghai University. His essays about religion and society appear in a variety of publications, most notably the newsweekly Window of the South (Danwei translated a piece of his on Buddhism in Dazhai).
Li posts many of these pieces to his personal blog, which make it a fascinating window on the ways that faith is expressed in contemporary China. Li's subjects include faith and Chinese modernity, the development of spirituality over the last several decades, the relationship between personal faith and organized religion, and the disposition of the government toward faith and religion.
In his most recent piece (written for Window), Li provides a brief rundown on what he means by faith/belief:
A fair number of the posts were written for publication in academic journals and include bibliographies that make interesting reading on their own.
Some recommended posts:
- A faith model worthy of suspicion: Leading off with the Li Yi phenomenon (a Daoist master who promoted astonishing powers of healing), Li discusses contemporary Daoism:
- "From 'Crisis of Faith' to 'Crisis of Religion'": Personal faith has grown during the reform era, but many of these believers do not identify with religion.
- Whose religious faith is it? Li addresses the controversy over the Shaolin Temple's decision to go public on the stock market.
- Culture Wars in China: Is Buddhism part of guoxue, classical Chinese "national learning"?
Li's most recent essays on faith and religious identity have been collected in Believing Without Identifying: The Sociological Interpretation of Spiritual Beliefs in Contemporary China (信仰但不认同：当代中国信仰的社会诠释), which was published earlier this year.
Links and Sources
Jobs in China
Henry on The Eurasian Face
Caroline W on Big in China
Michael on Julia Lovell on translating Lu Xun's complete fiction: "His is an angry, searing vision of China"
Brandon K. on Clueless academic takes on popular fantasy novels
China Media Timeline
Major media events over the last three decades
Danwei Model Workers
The latest recommended blogs and new media
Books on China
The Eurasian Face : Blacksmith Books, a publishing house in Hong Kong, is behind The Eurasian Face, a collection of photographs by Kirsteen Zimmern. Below is an excerpt from the series:
Big in China: An adapted excerpt from Big In China: My Unlikely Adventures Raising A Family, Playing The Blues and Becoming A Star in China, just published this month. Author Alan Paul tells the story of arriving in Beijing as a trailing spouse, starting a blues band, raising kids and trying to make sense of China.
Pallavi Aiyar's Chinese Whiskers: Pallavi Aiyar's first novel, Chinese Whiskers, a modern fable set in contemporary Beijing, will be published in January 2011. Aiyar currently lives in Brussels where she writes about Europe for the Business Standard. Below she gives permissions for an excerpt.
Front Page of the Day
A different newspaper every weekday
From the Vault
Classic Danwei posts
+ Korean history doesn't fly on Chinese TV screens (2007.09): SARFT puts the kibbosh on Korean historical dramas.
+ Religion and government in an uneasy mix (2008.03): Phoenix Weekly (凤凰周刊) article from October, 2007, on government influence on religious practice in Tibet.
+ David Moser on Mao impersonators (2004.10): I first became aware of this phenomenon in 1992 when I turned on a Beijing TV variety show and was jolted by the sight of "Mao Zedong" and "Zhou Enlai" playing a game of ping pong. They both gave short, rousing speeches, and then were reverently interviewed by the emcee, who thanked them profusely for taking time off from their governmental duties to appear on the show.