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Confucianism as a World ReligionContested Histories and Contemporary Realities$
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Anna Sun

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780691155579

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691155579.001.0001

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Four Controversies over the Religious Nature of Confucianism

Four Controversies over the Religious Nature of Confucianism

A Brief History of Confucianism

(p.17) Chapter 1 Four Controversies over the Religious Nature of Confucianism
Confucianism as a World Religion

Anna Sun

Princeton University Press

This chapter presents the four major controversies in the past five centuries regarding the nature of Confucianism as a religion. The first is the Chinese Rites and Term Controversy, which involved Jesuit missionaries in China. The second is the so-called Term Controversy, which involved missionaries in China as well as scholars in the newly emerging intellectual discipline, “comparative religion.” The third is the Confucianity Movement (kongjiao yundong), which was a failed movement to make Confucianity into China's state religion. The fourth is the latest debate over the religious nature of Confucianism, the so-called Confucianism as a Religion Controversy, which took place in China between 2000 and 2004.

Keywords:   Confucianism, religion, Chinese Rites, Term Controversy, Jesuit missionaries, comparative religion, Confucianity Movement, China, state religion

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