(Any shelfmark refers to the Library of Congress system)
Last update: 20-1-2013
I have maintained this site actively from late 1999 until 2004. It was always intended as a service to the field when little serious reseach had been done. Sadly it was moved around several times by my previous employer, causing even internal links to become unreliable. Since several major publications (by Ownby, Penny and Palmer, to mention a few) have now appeared, I have used the occasion of my move to Oxford to edit the bibliography, dropping most references to unpublished materials and adding more up-to-date literature.
On the Boxers:
On new religious groups:
Paul A. Cohen, History in Three Keys: The Boxers as Event, Experience,
and Myth (New York: Columbia University Press, 1996)
- Jane E. Elliott, Some did it for Civilisation, Some did it for their Country: A Revised View of the Boxer War (Hong Kong: The Chinese University Press, 2002)
Joseph W. Esherick, The Origins of the Boxer Uprising (Berkeley:
University of California Press, 1987)
On the Falun Gong:
B.J. ter Haar, The White Lotus Teachings in Chinese
Religious History (Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1992; reprinted as a paperback
by the University of Hawaii Press, Honolulu, 1999) (discusses traditional
elite and state perceptions of new religious groups and other religious
phenomena, with a detailed discussions of the labeling and stigmatizing
David K. Jordan and Daniel L. Overmyer, The Flying Phoenix: Aspects
of Sectarianism in Taiwan (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1986)
(discusses new religious groups on Taiwan, such as the Cihui Tang [Benevolence
and Charity Hall] and the Yiguan Dao [the Unity Way])
Munro, Robin, Syncretic Sects and Secret Societies: Revival in the 1980s,
in: Chinese Sociology and Anthropology, 21: 4 (1989). (translates
important policy document on so-called sects and societies from the PRC)
Popular or introductory works
- Maria Hsia Chang, Falun Gong: The End of Days (New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 2004). (review by David Palmer, in: The China Quarterly, Volume 181: March 2005, pp 181-183) A rather biased and academically uninformed study.
David Schechter, Falun Gong's Challenge to China: Spiritual Practice
or Evil Cult? (A Report and Reader by Danny Schechter) (New York: Akashic
Books, 2000) Both a journalistic report, a source book and a bibliography
(mainly WWW). Full of useful information on the movement from an empathetic
point of view, although somewhat outdated by now.
Benoit Vermandier, "The Law and the Wheel: The sudden emergence of the
prophets of 'spiritual civilisation'", China Perspectives
14-21. Written before the start of the Falun Gong repression after the
Apruk 25 1999 demonstration at Zhongnanhai. Although an early article,
it contains a number of good remarks on the phenomenon. The remark (p.
16-17) that Li Hongzhi's "semi-delirious utterances" provide good reason
to Chinese authorities to be vigilant goes a bit too far.
Oskar Weggel, "Sektenunruhen in Beijing" China Aktuell (April
Chinese studies (not systematically collected)
- Ian Adams, Riley Adams and Rocco Galati, Power of the Wheel: the Falun Gong Revolution (Toronto: Stoddart, 2001) (not seen).
- Mark R. Bell and Taylor C. Boas, "Falun Gong and Internet: Evangelism, Community, and Struggle for Survival", Nova Religio 6: 2 (2003) 277-293
- Blackburn, Michael Lewis, "Movements of Power and Acts of Resistance: Falun Gong and the Politics of Everyday Life (MA Thesis, University of Victoria, 2000). Within the framework of James Scott and the weapons of the weak.
- Craig A. Burgdoff, "How Falun Gong Practice Undermines Li Hongzhi's Totalistic Rhetoric", Nova Religio 6: 2 (2003) 332-347.
- Cheris Shun-ching Chan, "The Falun Gong in China: A Sociological Perspective", The China Quarterly , 179 (2004): 665-683
- Bryan Edelman and James T. Richardson, "Falun Gong and the Law: The Development of Legal Social Control in China", Nova Religio 6: 2 (2003) 312-331
- Gareth Fisher, "Resistance and Salvation in Falun Gong: The Promise and Peril of Forbearance", Nova Religio 6: 2 (2003) 294-311
- Barend J. ter Haar, "PR China: Falun Gong: assessing its origins and present situation" (July 2002; ISSN 1020-8429. On behalf of WriteNet for use by the UNHCR / internal document)
- Edward Irons, "Falun Gong and the Sectarian Religion Paradigm", Nova Religio 6:2 (2003) 244-262
Ian Johnson (Wall Street Journal;2001 Pulitzer Prize for International Reporting, (published also by the WSJ as A Portrait of the Unreformed Side of China: The Falun Dafa Protests)
Ian Johnson, Wild Grass:
three stories of change in modern China. (Pantheon Books, New York, 2004). The third "story"
deals with the FLG and rise of the Qigong movement.
- R.C. Keith and Z. Lin, "The Falun Gong Problem: Politics and the Struggle for the Rule of Law in China", in: The China Quarterly, vol 175 Sept (2003) 623-642
- Scott Lowe, "China and the New Religious Movements", Nova Religio 4: 2 (2001) 213-224
- __________, "Chinese and International Contexts for the Rise of Falun Gong", Nova Religio 6: 2 (2003) 263-276
- Yunfeng Lu, ‘Entrepreneurial Logics and the Evolution of Falun Gong’, Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, Vol. 44: 2 (2005) 173-185
- Munekage, Natsuko, "China's new religious movement: Falun Gong's cultural resistance and political Confrontation" (MA Thesis, University of Oregon, 2001). Especially on the movement as a Qigong movement and example of cultural resistance.
Munro, Robin "Judicial Psychiatry
in China and its Political Abuses", first published in Colombia Journal
of Asian Law 14:1 (2001), republished separately as Geneva Initiative
in Psychiatry Documents 1 (2001). Details the abuse of psychiatry
for dealing with political and religious dissidents, including an extensive
section on the use of psychiatry to suppress the Falun Gong.
- Stephen Noakes & Caylan Ford, "Managing Political Opposition Groups in
China: Explaining the Continuing Anti-Falun Gong Campaign." The China Quarterly, no. 223 (September 2015): 658-679.
- Susan Palmer and David Ownby, "Falun Dafa Practitioners: a Preliminary Research Report," Nova Religio, Vol.4 (October 2000), pp. 133-137
David Ownby, "Falungong as a Cultural Revitalization Movement: An Historian
Looks at Contemporary China" (Talk Given at Rice University, October 20,
2000; audiotranscript: www.ruf.rice.edu/~tnchina/commentary/ownby1000.html).
Interesting lecture by specialist in the field of marginalized groups in
- --------, "Falungong and Canada's China Policy," International Journal, Vol. 56, No. 2 (Spring 2001), pp. 183-204
- --------, "The Falun Gong in the New World", European Journal of East Asian Studies, 2 303- (2003).
- --------, "A History for Falun Gong: Popular Religion and the Chinese State since the Ming Dynasty", Nova Religio 6: 2 (2003) 223-243
- ---------, Falun Gong and the future of China (New York; Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008) (including important bibliography)
- David A. Palmer, "The Doctrine of Li Hongzhi. Falun Gong: Between sectarianism and universal salvation", China Perspectives 35 (2001): 14-23.
- ------------ "Falun Gong: La tentation du politique", Critique internationale 11 (April 2001): 36-43.
- ----------- , "Le qigong au carrefour des « discours anti ». De l'anticléricalisme communiste au fondamentalisme du Falungong", Extrême Orient Extrême Occident 24 (2002): 153-166.
- -----------, "Modernity and Millenialism in China: Qigong and the Birth of Falun Gong", Asian Anthropology 2 : 79-110.
- ---------- , "Le qigong et la tradition sectaire chinoise", Social Compass 50:4 (2003): 471-480.
- --------------, La fièvre du qigong. Guérison, religion et politique en Chine, 1949-1999 (Paris: Editions de l'Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales, 2004) and the English version Qigong Fever. Body, Science, and Utopia (Columbia University Press: New York, 2007)(This is based on real in-depth research on Qigong movements, especially in the 1990s, including the Zhonggong and the Falun Gong.)
- Susan Palmer (see also under David Ownby), "From Healing to Protest: Conversion Patterns Among the Practitioners of Falun Gong", Nova Religio 6: 2 (2003) 347-364
- Benjamin Penny, "The Life and Times of Li Hongzhi: Falun Gong and Religious Biography", The China Quarterly, 175 (2003) 643-661
- ----------------, "Falun Gong, prophecy and apocalypse", East Asian History 2002
- ---------------, The Religion of Falun Gong (Chicago, Ill.: University of Chicago Press, 2012) (including important bibliography)
- Elizabeth Perry, "Challenging the Mandate of Heaven: Popular Protest in Modern China," Critical Asian Studies, Vol. 33, No. 2 (2001), pp. 163-180. Revised as "Introduction" for her own Challenging the Mandate of Heaven: Social Protest and State Power in China (M.E: Sharpe: Armonk, 2002), pp. ix-xxxii.
- Porter, Noah, "Falun Gong in the United States: An Ethnographic Study" (MA thesis, University of South Florida) (http://etd.fcla.edu/SF/SFE0000113/FalunGongInTheUS-NoahPorter-Thesis.pdf) (has also appeared as an e-book)
- --------------, "Professional Practitioners and Contact Persons Explicating Special Types of Falun Gong Practitioners" Nova Religio 9: 2 (2005) 62-83. .
Patsy Rahn, "The
Falun Gong: Beyond the Headlines" Cultic Studies Journal, 2000, Volume 17, pages 166-186. The article is based on a close study of the Falun Gong through the news.
- --------------, "The Chemistry of a Conflict: The Chinese Government and the Falun Gong", Terrorism and Political Violence, 14:4 (2002) 41-65.
- Vivienne Shue, "Global Imaginings, the State's Quest for Hegemony and the
Pursuit of Phantom Freedom in China: From Heshang to Falungong", in
Catarina Kinnvall and Kristina Jonsson (eds) Globalisation and
Democratization in Asia ( Routledge: London 2002), pp.210-229 (not yet seen)
- Kelly A. Thomas, "Falun Gong: An Analysis of China's National Security Concerns," Pacific Rim Law & Policy Journal, Vol. 10, No. 2 (March, 2001), pp 471-496.
- Patricia M. Thornton, "Framing Dissent in Contemporary China: Irony, Ambiguity and Metonymy," China Quarterly, No. 171, 2002, pp. 661-681. Very complicated and abstract analysis, which takes Li Hongzhi's views as one example of "metonymy" in framing dissent. At present I am not yet sure what the author is arguing due to language problems on my part (?).
- Tong, James, "An Organizational Analysis of the Falun Gong: Structure, Communications, Financing," China Quarterly, No.171, 2002, pp. 636-660. Critical analysis of the state's argument for a strong Falun Gong organization prior to its persecution and Falun Gong financial abuse, as well as of Falun Gong counterclaims. Admirably objective in tone. Basically political and social scientist approach.
- Tong, James, "Publish to Perish: Regime Choices and Propaganda Impact in the Anti-Falun Gong Publications Campaign", Journal of Contemporary China (2005) 14 (44)507-523.
- James W. Tong, Revenge of the Forbidden City: The Suppression of the Falungong in China, 1999-2005 (New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008) on the persecution of the movement by the Chinese state and the CCP.
- Catherine Wessinger, "Falun Gong Symposium: Introduction and Glossary", Nova religio 6:2 (2003) 215-222
- Xiao, Ming. The Cultural Economy of Falun Gong in China: A Rhetorical Perspective (Columbia, S.C.: University of South Carolina Press, 2011)
On religious feelings in the PRC:
- Kang Xiaoguang, Falun gong shijian quantoushi (A Complete View of the Falun Gong incident) (Hong Kong: Mingbao chubanshe, 2000) (not seen)
Zhang Weiqing ±i·L´¸ and Qiao Gong ³ì¤½
, Falun gong chuangshiren Li Hongzhi pingzhuan ªk½ü¥\³Ð©l¤H§õ¬x§Óµû¶Ç
(Taibei: Chengbang wenhua shiye, 1999) (much interesting information, but no scholarly distance and no critical apparatus)
- Also see the on-line bibliography on religious culture on the mainland
in the twentieth century that I am presently compiling, "Towards
a bibliography of works and passages on religious life in mainland China
in the twentieth century (Republican China [before 1949] and the PRC)."
Hunter, Alan and Don Rimmington, eds. All under Heaven. Chinese Tradition
and Christian Life in the People's Republic of China.(Kerk en Theologie
in Context ; 17). (Kampen: Uitgeversmaatschappij J.H. Kok, 1992),
esp. Feng Chongyi, Gregor Benton. "Chinese Youth Today: The Crises of Belief,"
pp. 80-90 and Alan Hunter and Don Rimmington. "Train up a Child: Attitudes
Towards Religion and Atheism among Chinese Students," pp. 91-107. Although
still preliminary, these two articles give a valuable impression of the
kind of survey work that needs to be done to understand the overall background
to the appeal of the Falun Gong and Qigong movements in reigning religious
(or a-religious) sentiments among different social and educational layers
of the population.
It is important to look at Qigong movements in general. Even though
Falun Gong is not merely yet another a Qigong movement, Qigong movements
and the Falun Gong and traditional " new religious groups/movements" do
have much in common in their approach to illness as a desequilibrium in
the microcosmic balance that can be helped by redressing this balance.
The main difference is the additional Buddhist etiology and value
system of the Falun gong.
See the on-line bibliography on religious culture on the mainland
in the twentieth century that I am presently compiling for more references
on Qigong movements, "Towards
a bibliography of works and passages on religious life in mainland China
in the twentieth century (Republican China [before 1949] and the PRC)."
On PRC State control of religion:
Ots, Thomas, Medizin und Heilung in China : Annäherungen an die
traditionelle Medizin (Berlin: Reimer, 1990). R601.O8y
Ots, Thomas, Stiller Körper - Lauter Leib : Aufstieg und
Untergang der jungen chinesische Heilbewegung Kranich-Qigong (PhD dissertation,
Hamburg, 1991) RM727.C54 O46y 1991 (These two works by Ots contain
good information on traditional Chinese healing, including the practice
of Qigong for healing purposes based on the author's fieldwork
Ots, Thomas, "The Silenced Body - The Expressive Leib: on the Dialectic
of Mind and Life in Chinese Cathartic Healing", in: Thomas J. Csordas
ed., Embodiment and Experience: The Existential Ground of Culture and
Self (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1994), 116-136. Takes
up ideas and materials treated in more detail in the German works by Ots.
Zhu Xiaoyang and Benjamin Penny eds., "The Qigong Boom", Chinese
Sociology and Anthropology 1994, Vol. 27:1. In this issue an interesting
bunch of documents is translated (by Paul Lam and John Minford), which
throw further light on the religious side of Qigong movements
and their claims of healing.
On the state and new religious groups ("sects", "cults"):
Asia Watch comp., Detained in China and Tibet: A Directory of Political
and Religious Prisoners (New York: Human Rights Watch, 1994), esp.
pp. 250-271, 342-350.
Human Rights Watch, China: State Control of Religion (New York:
Human Rights Watch, 1997).
MacInnes, Donald E., Religion in China Today: Policy and Practice,
(Maryknoll: Orbis, 1989).
Munro, Robin "Judicial Psychiatry in China and its Political Abuses",
New Religious and Ideological Communities
and Psychogroups in the Federal Republic of Germany (Final report of
the Enquete Commission on 'So-called Sects and Psychogroups') (Wolfgang
Fehlberg and Monica Ulloa-Fehlberg trsl; Bonn: Deutscher Bundestag,
Referat Öffentlichkeitsarbeit, 1998) (original in German; English
version ISBN 3-930343-43-3) Please note that there is a substantial, and
in my opinion more tolerant, minority opinion by Angelika Köster-Lössack
MP (Bündnis 90 - the Greens) and Hubert Seiwert, a specialist
in general religious studies and Chinese religious culture (pp. 305-370)
A broad range of information on state and private approaches is available
at the website of The
Center for Studies on New Religions.
PRC propaganda against the Falun gong
- Special issues of Chinese Law and Government, edited by Shiping Hua and Ming Xia under the titles, "The Battle between the Chinese Government and the Falun Gong," Vol. 32, No. 5 (September-October, 1999) and "The Falun Gong: Qigong, Code of Ethics and Religion," Vol. 32, No. 6 (November-December, 1999).
PRC propaganda on the Internet see the section
Falun Gong daqidi (Jinri zhongguo chubanshe yinxiangbu chuban faxing,
1999 [?]; consists of two CDs) a blatant propaganda film, which does contain
all kinds of interesting information nevertheless.
"Falun Gong" jiushi xiejiao (Beijing: Xuexi chubanshe, 1999).
Hua Chu and Zhong Han, The Storm of Falun Gong (Falun Gong feng
liu), Hong Kong: The Pacific Century Press, 1999 ISBN962-8274-25-2)
Li Shi (ed), Li Hongzhi and his "Falun Gong" - Deceiving the Public
and Ruining Lives (Beijing, New Star Publishers, 1999, ISBN 7-80148-238-7/Z)
(original Chinese title: Qi shi hai ren de Li Hongzhi ji qi "Falun
This book can be read integrally through the PRC anti Falun Gong site (I
have not seen the paper version). At the corresponding Chinese page to
this section one will find the Chinese version of this book, as well
as another book Falun Gong yu xiajiao (no complete publication data given,
published in 1999). Despite their bias, both books can also be indirectly
used as relevant background material (for instance to investigate the geographical
and social background of its members).
Yan Shi (ed), Shiji ju pian Li Hongzhi [Super conman of the century:
(Dazhong wenyichubanshe, Beijing, 1999 ISBN 7-80094-398-4) (not seen)