Brill’s Encyclopedia of China

Get access

Popular Religion
(3,149 words)

1. Definition and Scope

"Popular religion", or "folk religion", is a modern Western construct. Introduced by European sociologists as a scientific alternative to earlier terms such as "superstitions", "folklore", or "natural religion", the concept has been gradually introduced in China, but has not yet been generally adopted. It also has been subject to divergent interpretations. Literally translated as minjian zongjiao, th…

Cite this page
Schipper, Kristofer, “Popular Religion”, in: Brill’s Encyclopedia of China, Managing Editor English Edition: Daniel Leese. Consulted online on 29 November 2023 <>
First published online: 2008
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004168633, 20121018

▲   Back to top   ▲