The Temple of Memories: History, Power, and Morality in a Chinese Village
This study focuses on the politics of memory in the village of Dachuan in northwest China, in which 85 percent of the villagers are surnamed Kong and believe themselves to be descendants of Confucius. It recounts both how this proud community was subjected to intense suffering during the Maoist era, culminating in its forcible resettlement in December 1960 to make way for the construction of a major hydroelectric dam, and how the village eventually sought recovery through the commemoration of that suffering and the revival of a redefined religion.
Before 1949, the Kongs had dominated their area because of their political influence, wealth, and, above all, their identification with Confucius, whose precepts underlay so much of the Chinese ethical and political tradition. After the Communists came to power in 1949, these people, as a literal embodiment of the Confucian heritage, became prime targets for Maoist political campaigns attacking the traditional order, from land reform to the “Criticize Confucius” movement. Many villagers were arrested, three were beheaded, and others died in labor camps. When the villagers were forced to hastily abandon their homes and the village temple, they had time to disinter only the bones of their closest family members; the tombs of earlier generations were destroyed by construction workers for the dam.
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2 Memory of Historical Possibilities
3 Memory of Revolutionary Terror
4 Memory of Communal Trauma
Photographs follow p 86
5 Memory of Local Animosity
6 Memory of Ritual Language
7 Memory of Genealogical Retainers
8 Memory of Cultural Symbols
9 Finding Memories in Gansu
1905 genealogy altar ancestor worship archives Big Sword Society central ceremony China Chinese chuan clan council clan genealogy Communist compiled Confu Confucius's construction Cultural Revolution Dachuan Dachuan area Dachuan's Confucius temple dynasty elderly farmland festival organizers Gansu genealogy geomancy Guangdong hall Han Chinese households Jiaxing kinship Kong clan Kong Decheng Kong lineage Kong Qinghui Kong ritual Kong villages kong zi Kongs of Dachuan kowtow Lanzhou Lin Biao lineage's Liujiaxia Maoist memorial elegies ment miao Muslim Myron Cohen names officials older Party secretary Qufu religious reservoir resettlement rites ritual handbook ritual lands ritual language rural sacrificial scholars script senior liturgists Shaanxi sheng social memory society Song dynasty spirit tablets statue surnamed Kong temple managers temple's texts tion tombs township traditional village cadres village's women Xiaochuan Yanguoxia Yansheng Duke Yellow River Yongjing county yuan Zhang
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Negotiating Ethnicity in China: Citizenship as a Response to the State
No preview available - 2004