Transnational but isolated: A case study of the Chinese evangelical church in Japan

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    Literature on immigrants' religious activities highlights the importance of transnational ties between the host and home communities. This paper challenges the dominant discourse by looking at a Chinese evangelical church in Chiba, one of the seven prefectures in the Greater Tokyo Area, Japan. This ethnic church is an isolated religious community that grows with limited transnational connections and support. By exploring the structure and membership of this ethnic church, I argue that adopting a transnational approach may downplay the role of religious immigrants in the construction of ethnic religious community. I propose that the growth of this ethnic church with very limited connections with the host country and the homeland can be better understood using the concepts of cultural identity and diaspora. The data in this study originates from my ethnographic fieldwork in Japan, conducted from August 2010 to February 2011.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)268-289
    JournalJournal of Chinese Overseas
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 2018


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