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The Modern Spirit of Asia – The Spiritual and the Secular in China and India - Princeton Scholarship Online
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The Modern Spirit of Asia: The Spiritual and the Secular in China and India

Peter van der Veer


This book challenges the notion that modernity in China and India are derivative imitations of the West, arguing that these societies have transformed their ancient traditions in unique and distinctive ways. The book begins with nineteenth-century imperial history, exploring how Western concepts of spirituality, secularity, religion, and magic were used to translate the traditions of India and China. The book traces how modern Western notions of religion and magic were incorporated into the respective nation-building projects of Chinese and Indian nationalist intellectuals, yet how modernity i ... More

Keywords: Chinese modernity, China, Indian modernity, spirituality, secularity, religion, magic, Indian nationalism, secularism, Christian conversion

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2013 Print ISBN-13: 9780691128146
Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017 DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691128146.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Peter van der Veer, author
Max Planck Institute