Leisure, Ritual and Choice in Modern Chinese Societies

Robert Weller

This paper examines the relation between leisure and religion in modern China and Taiwan. It begins with a theoretical discussion of leisure as a frame that does not exist for all peoples, places and times. It goes on to examine two specific hypotheses about leisure—that a gift economy predominates and that women have a greater role than in most other spheres—as they apply to religious activity. It suggests that both the gift economy and the role of women have grown significantly over the course of the twentieth century, and that while religion before then may not have fully fit into a frame of leisure, it has increasingly come to do so over the past several decades.

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One Comment

Matt posted on August 14, 2012 at 1:30 pm

The social take on leisure is so much different in Europe than China. I visited China last year and was amazed by the diverse tourist crowd and their idea of leisure.

Very interesting paper!

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