Dissertation > Philosophy, religion > Religion > Christian > Preaching,preaching, Miriam Note

A Study on Chinese Women's Christianity Preaching Movenment in Modern China

Author YinYiZuo
Tutor HuWeiQing
School Shandong University
Course Modern Chinese History
Keywords Protestantism women’s Christianity preaching mission women missionaries Chinese christian women
CLC B975
Type PhD thesis
Year 2013
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This dissertation adopts an overlapping perspective of Chinese Christianity history and sex history. To analyze Chinese women’s Christianity preaching movement in modern history from a relatively macroscopic view, the author places her emphasis on the missionary work and Chinese christian women’s efforts of FES (The Society for Promoting Female Education in the East) and C.E.Z.M.S (The Church of England Zenana Missionary Society). On the basis of painstaking analysis of archives and relevant magazines, the author strives to highlight the role and status of the female by reestablishing the historical reality between women and the development of Chinese Christianity.In1807, the preacher of Protestantism Robert Morrison came to China, which raised the curtain for the preaching movement of missionaries of Protestantism in China. The wives who followed their husbands to China, together with those single women missionaries who came to China after the establishment of Women Missionary Society in the mid19th century, made joint efforts in escalating the evolution of women’s Christianity preaching movement in modern times. The establishment of Women Missionary Society made it possible for women’s overseas preaching movement to pursue a relatively independent form of organization. In the operation and development of Women Missionary Society, women missionaries tempered themselves. Female missionaries’voice became vague once they were deprived of the female preaching sphere which was marked by the slogan "women’s work for women." As far as Chinese christian women were concerned, though women’s status in the Church ascended with the development of Chinese women’s Christianity preaching movement, some Chinese Christian Women were no longed content with the status quo of women in the Church. Hence, they were enthusiastic about seeking substantial gender equality within the Church.In spite of the underprivileged standing in the church’s influence frame, the women missionaries who stepped on the soil of China in modern history shouldn’t be neglected in the history of China’s Christianity preaching movement. To attain the purpose of preaching Christianity, they promoted education and medicine among Chinese women. This dissertation reflects the efforts of the women missionaries from the case study of FES and C.E.Z.M.S in the field of education, medicine and preaching mission. In addition to all of the aspects mentioned above, since their efforts, to some extent, exceed the boundaries of Chinese gender restriction, their influence can be detected in the enlightenment of Chinese women’s gender awareness as well as Chinese women’s engagement in public affairs.The main purpose of FES and C.E.Z.M.S in China is obviously preaching Christianity in Chinese women. In reality, center around Girl’s Protestant Mission Schools and women’s Protestant Mission Hospitals, Gospel preaching network, is established, which expanded the influence of Christianity and turned out more effective than the pure Gospel preaching. Due to the bridge role of Mrs Ahok, who traveled to Great Britain and married to a businessman from Fuzhou, the preaching efforts made by C.E.Z.M.S among the upper-class women in Fuzhou were quite evident, which reflected the feature of the preaching movement in Fujian.Those Chinese christian women who were affected by the women missionaries complied with their Christian gender cognition. These Chinese christian women and the female students from Protestant Mission Schools became divided owing to the influence of nationalism wave and some of them devoted themselves to patriotic efforts. Based on the corresponding analysis of the magazine India’s Women and China’s Daughters sponsored by C.E.Z.M.S, this dissertation inspected the viewpoints of women missionaries and discovered that women missionaries exerted influence on Chinese women and meanwhile Chinese women, under the influence of diversified thoughts, also altered the women missionarys’viewpoints. These articles also evidently reflected the women missionaries’s stand, they believed that the key to Chinese issue including women’s issue was to Christianize China and emphasized that this was real patriotism. Due to the difference in self-identity, it was destined that these women missionaries and some Chinese christian women who possessed relatively strong patriotic emotions drifted apart in common language.

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