Religious culture in 20th century China: bibliography by Barend ter Haar

 Created  4-3-2000, presently carrying out a thorough overhaul as of 9-2-2013.


Bibliographical work

See the following webpages for help on doing bibliographical searches  concerning religious culture in China in general, as well as other aids to studying Chinese religious culture:

Between 1911 and 1949


Red Spears and similar self-defense groups

Local cults in general

Fox cults
Buddhist traditions
New religious groups
Ritual traditions
Local religious life (folklore, festivals, healing and other themes not included above)

Between 1949 and 1976

On a local level
Buddhist traditions

After 1976

General works on religion after 1976
Also see my online bibliography on shamanism (broadly defined). Human Rights

These works by Human Rights Watch/Asia Watch indicate that religious freedom in only guaranteed, but not practised in any systematic way. They focus on mainstream, more institutionalized traditions, and offer little on local cults and ordinary religious specialists. More information on human rights and new religious groups can be found below.

Good human rights websites for China (containing links to published reports etc.): State control

Local cults and festivals
New religious groups
Buddhist traditions:
Daoist traditions
Ritual practices.
Qigong movements
(also see my website on Falun Gong , which can be seen as an example of this larger phenomenon), which also contains an updated bibliography.

Christianity and Islam in the PRC

(with the assistance of Andrea Janku)
See also the section Human Rights above.

A top-down perspective

Some handbooks on Christianity
Some handbooks on Islam