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Chapter 6 surveys new waves of internal and external migration in the post-Mao era, arguing that they are linked phenomena. The chapter demonstrates that the larger phenomenon, the “floating population” of rural migrants in the cities of eastern, coastal China, is related to the phenomenon of “new migrants” targeting destinations beyond the borders of China. The chapter describes two important examples. The first is the simultaneous migration from some specific communities in the Wenzhou area of southern Zhejiang to Beijing and of migration from other specific communities in Wenzhou to such places as Prato, Italy. The second example consists of rural communities near the city of Wenzhou that both receive “internal” migrants from western China and send “external” migrants to such places as New York City. The chapter demonstrates the continued importance of kinship and native-place networks for the laborers and small entrepreneurs who made up the “floating population” and the “new migrants.” The chapter explores the stances and roles of various levels of government within China toward migrants. It concludes with a survey of family practices, including the reemergence of split families and the newer trends of family migration.
The production of the Union Bible was designed to provide Chinese Protestants with a standardised sacred text to better understand and approach the Christian faith in their native language. While believers regard the translated Scripture as a moral compass that gives spiritual references to everyday challenges, the methods of acquiring these references point to individual creativity and improvisation. When the Union Bible was banned from circulation in the public domain during the Maoist period (1949–1976), Chinese church leaders were jailed and reading the Bible was deemed to be subversive, how did ordinary Protestants draw on their reading of the Union Bible to sustain their religious commitment beyond initial conversion? How did they construct a biblically-centered faith against the socialist indoctrination? This study investigates the centrality of the Union Bible among Chinese Seventh-day Adventists in Wenzhou from the 1950s to 1970s. In particular, it explores how two female Adventists enmeshed the Chinese mode of divination with their daily Bible reading for spiritual insights as they confronted personal and congregational crises in the Maoist era. It argues that this indigenous mode of Bible reading sheds light on the ways in which Chinese Adventists asserted and empowered their scriptural-textual authority, interpretive agency, and personal piety against the state's relentless atheistic propaganda.
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