1st Edition

Heritage and Religion in East Asia

Edited By Shu-Li Wang, Michael Rowlands, Yujie Zhu Copyright 2021
    262 Pages 21 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    262 Pages 21 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Heritage and Religion in East Asia examines how religious heritage, in a mobile way, plays across national boundaries in East Asia and, in doing so, the book provides new theoretical insights into the articulation of heritage and religion.

    Drawing on primary, comparative research carried out in four East Asian countries, much of which was undertaken by East Asian scholars, the book shows how the inscription of religious items as "Heritage" has stimulated cross-border interactions among religious practitioners and boosted tourism along modern pilgrimage routes. Considering how these forces encourage cross-border links in heritage practices and religious movements in China, Taiwan, South Korea, and Japan, the volume also questions what role heritage plays in a region where Buddhism, Taoism, and other various folk religious practices are dominant. Arguing that it is diversity and vibrancy that makes religious discourse in East Asia unique, the contributors explore how this particularity both energizes and is empowered by heritage practices in East Asia.

    Heritage and Religion in East Asia enriches understanding of the impact of heritage and religious culture in modern society and will be of interest to academics and students working in heritage studies, anthropology, religion, and East Asian studies.

    1. Heritage and Religion in East Asia

    Yujie Zhu, Shu-Li Wang, Michael Rowlands

    Part I Recognition and Remembrance in Religion and Heritage

    2. Dealing with Death; Separating and Mixing Religious and Secular Heritage

    Stephan Feuchtwang, Michael Rowlands and Sun, Jing

    3. Who Owns "the Culture of the Yellow Emperor"?

    Shu-Li Wang

    Part II Modernizing Heritage

    4. After the Heritage: Fate of Gangneng Danoje Between Religious Ritual and Cultural Festival

    Kwang Ok Kim

    5. Japan and China: Parallel and Divergent Tracks in Modernity?

    Nelson Graburn

    6. Ethnic Religion after Disasters: Intangible Cultural Heritage in China

    Yujie Zhu

    Part III From Heritage to Religion

    7. Heritage, Ritual Space and Contested Urbanization in Southern China

    Tim Oakes

    8. Heritage Conservation and Ethnic Associations: the Chaozhou Hungry Ghosts Festival in Hong Kong

    Selina Ching Chan

    9. The Lute of Heaven of Golden Dragon Valley: Transcending

    Shamanism David Holm

    Part IV Authenticity and Sacred

    10. Between Religious Authenticity and Intangible Cultural Heritage: The Cult of Mazu in Taiwan, Fujian and Hainan Island

    Hsun Chang

    11. Issues Regarding the Protection of Intangible Cultural Heritage Related to Religion in Japan

    Tomo Ishimura

    12. Seichi Junrei: Heritage, Pilgrimage and Popular Culture in Contemporary Japan

    Cheng-Heng Chang and Chung-Ming Hsu

    13. Afterword: Secular Sacred and Religious Sacred

    Stephan Feuchtwang


    Shu-Li Wang is Assistant Research Fellow of the Institute of Ethnology, Academia Sinica, Taiwan. Wang obtained her PhD in anthropology from University College London. Her research interests lie in critical heritage studies, museum anthropology, cultural memory and anthropology of nationalism. 

    Michael Rowlands is Emeritus Professor in Anthropology and Material Culture at University College London. He has been doing field research on Material Culture and Heritage in West Africa and more recently in China since 1976. 

    Yujie Zhu is Senior Lecturer at the Centre for Heritage and Museum Studies, the Australian National University. His research interests centre on heritage and its relationship with politics, social memory, cultural tourism and religious practices.