Demon Hordes and Burning Boats: The Cult of Marshal Wen in Late Imperial Chekiang
One of the few full-length regional studies of popular religion in late imperial China, this book presents the history of the cult of Marshal Wen, a plague-fighting deity whose cult flourished through Chekiang and its neighboring provinces. The author provides a lively account of the rise of Wen's cult during the tumultuous years of the Southern Sung dynasty, as well as its spread during subsequent dynasties. In exploring the roles played by scholar-officials, merchants, and Taoist priests in the growth of Wen's cult, the author pays special attention to the various representations of this deity held by different social groups, and shows that these were constantly interacting in a process he calls "reverberation." His analysis of plague expulsion festivals featuring Marshal Wen reveals that they functioned as rites of affliction designed to both achieve communal purification and resolve social crises.
This book draws on a wide variety of sources, including Taoist scriptures and liturgical texts, stele inscriptions, literati writings (including poetry), manuscripts from local archives, as well as popular novels and folktales. The author also supplements his historical research with data gathered during fieldwork in Chekiang and Taiwan
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Academia Sinica boat expulsion Buddhist Ch'en Ch'ing Chang chapter Che-chiang jen-min ch'u-pan-she Chekiang chih chiian Chinese chuan Chung-hua shu-chii Chung-kuo min-chien cult of Marshal cult's cults and festivals Culture Defending King deities Divine Empyrean Dragon Boat Festival Eastern Peak edition elite Emperor epidemics exorcistic expel expulsion rites ﬁﬁ Five Commissioners Fukien gazetteer gentry gods Hangchow HCFC Heavenly Master hsien-chih Hsii Huang inﬂuence Kuan Late Imperial China late Ming Lord Loyal and Defending lunar month Marshal Wen Marshal Wen's cult Marshal Wen's festival merchants min-chien hsin-yang Min-su P'ing-yang palanquin Peking performed plague demons popular Prefecture procession PYHC Religion religious specialists Schipper scholar-officials scholars Shanghai shih Society south China Souther Southern Sung spirit mediums spread sub-region Sung dynasty T'ai-wan T'ang Taipei Taiwan Taoist Canon Taoist priests Taoist Ritual ts'ung-shu volume Wang wang-yeh wen-hua Wen's temple Wenchow WLCKTP worshipped yen-chiu Yiian Yuan dynasty