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Conference on Religions and Politics in Contemporary Chinese Societies

Conference on Religions and Politics in Contemporary Chinese Societies

Martin Lavicka18 Jan 201510 comments

Organizers: EU project CHINET, reg. no.: CZ.1.07/2.3.00/20.0152, Department of Asian Studies, Palacký University Olomouc & Department for the Study of Religions, Masaryk University Brno

Conference venue: Art Centre (Konvikt), Palacký University Olomouc, Univerzitní 3, Olomouc, Czech Republic

Conference dates: April 2 – 4, 2015

Conference language: English

Conference Call for Papers can be downloaded here. (update February 1, 2015)

You can register for the conference here.

Conference program can be downloaded here.

Book of abstracts can be downloaded here.

Keynote speakers:

  • Gerda Wielander (University of Westminster, UK)
  • Fan Lizhu (Fudan University, China)
  • Chen Na (Fudan University, China)
  • Dan Smyer Yu (Yunnan Minzu University, China)
  • Benjamin Penny (Australian National University, Australia)
  • André Laliberté (University of Ottawa, Canada)

Conference topics:

Religion in contemporary Chinese society is undoubtedly one of many important neuralgic points that have arisen from its turbulent development and will also shape its future. Compared with the professional and public interest in popular themes of development in contemporary China (such as economics, social policy, environmental issues, ethnic relations, demographics, urbanization, migration, militarization, nationalism, etc.), analysing the changes and the impacts of religions in Chinese society plays rather a minor role. However, if we inspect this topic taking the Chinese historical experience into account, or if we consider it with regard to knowledge of the developments in the world after the fall of the Berlin Wall, it is religion that has the potential to motivate and frame major changes at both the local and global levels. Chinese political elites are quite aware of the importance of religious issues, and since the unexpected conflict with the religious movement Falun Gong at the end of 20th century, their religious policy has therefore been, at least nominally, rather strictly defined. This strict approach cannot prevent an unstoppable development and transformation of the religious situation in contemporary China that
involves multiple varieties of religious traditions at all social levels and in all regions inhabited or controlled by the Chinese people.
The potentials, motivations, effectiveness and impacts of particular policies that are attempting to rectify the spontaneous religious developments will constitute the focus of this conference. We are looking forward to open a forum for all those interested
in debating and further analysing the changes in the field of religion in contemporary China, and of the impact that various official policies have had on this process. We are seeking research presentations (20–30 minutes in length) or session
proposals of any disciplinary backgrounds which relate to the general theme of Religions and Politics in Contemporary Chinese Societies. These could include, but are not confined to, the following subthemes:

  • The religious policy of the Chinese state – historical, ideological and international contexts
  • The blending of religious and ethnic policies
  • Christianity as a threat from across the borders vs. Christianity with Chinese characteristics
  • Islam and its representations in the global and local contexts
  • State policies towards “superstition” and new religious movements
  • Matchmaking between the Chinese state and Chinese religious “ideology”
  • Local government and local religious traditions
  • Commercialization and commodification of religion
  • Repression, regulation and support of religion by the Chinese state
  • International religious policy and religious policy of the Overseas communities
  • The role and concept of religion in the Chinese political system
  • The religious dimension of Chinese politics and the Chinese state
  • Political ambitions of the Chinese religious community


The deadline for the call for papers abstracts: 1st March 2015

Information for notification of acceptance of abstracts: 8th March 2015

Conference fees: Free of charge!

Registration for passive participants can be accessed here.

Abstracts must be submitted by 1st March 2015.

Note: Participants will cover all their personal costs, including transportation, accommodation, visas, etc. Our staff can provide you with an invitation letter for embassies if necessary.

About the city of Olomouc

Olomouc is the capital of the region of Central Moravia and belongs to one of the oldest cities in the Czech Republic. The region is distinguished for its agriculture, industry and beautiful countryside, as well as its historical and cultural traditions. The city dates back to the ninth century, when it was a power centre of the Great Moravian Kingdom, the oldest Slavonic state. Today Olomouc has over 100,000 inhabitants and its long history makes it one of the most beautiful cities of the Czech Republic, mainly due to its well preserved historical inner city (after Prague, the second largest in the Czech Republic).

About Palacký University Olomouc

Palacký University Olomouc is one of the oldest universities in Central Europe. Drawing on more than a 400-year tradition of higher education, it is nowadays an important centre for teaching and research with almost 23,000 undergraduate students in eight faculties. You can find more details about the city and the University on the following web pages:;

About the conference venue

The Baroque building of the former Jesuit College is one of the oldest parts of the university in Olomouc. After an exacting renovation of a grand scale, Palacký University now owns a spacious historical building with many original rooms and halls. Five fine art departments of the Faculty of Arts and Faculty of Education have thus gained new lecture halls, fine art studios, recording studios, representative conference halls for international venues, and rooms for its students and teachers. The historical centre of Olomouc now has another centre for culture and the arts. For more details:

For further details please contact us at the e-mail

The conference is co-funded by the CHINET project (reg. no. CZ.1.07/2.3.00/20.0152). This project is co-financed from the European Social Fund and State financial resources.

Partner and Supporter of the Conference on Religions and Politics in Contemporary Chinese Societies:


10 comments to “Conference on Religions and Politics in Contemporary Chinese Societies”

  1. Rajaram KC says:

    Dear Sirs, my name is Rajaram KC from Nepal and I would like to participate in this Religions Conference that is going to be held in April.
    Please let me know the necessary requirements to participate in this program.

    Thank you
    Rajaram KC

  2. Martin Lavicka says:

    Dear Rajaram,
    there are no particular requirements. You can submit your paper via this website, if your paper is selected for presentation, we will notify you.
    Best regards,

    Martin Lavička

  3. Eric agyemang says:

    I am rev. Eric a missionary from Ghana West Africa
    I do missionary work in south east asia extensively and i want to be part of this conference to update myself and my ministry with knowledge on christianity in china
    Please can you send me an invitation for visa embassy purpose in my home country

  4. Martin Lavicka says:

    Dear Eric,
    thank you for your inquiry. We suggest you to submit your paper for our conference. If your paper is accepted for presentation, we will inform you and send you the invitation letter. From our experience, the invitation letter for passive participant is usually not accepted by the Czech embassy to be sufficient for receiving visa.

    Thank you for your understanding!
    Martin Lavicka and Chinet team

  5. Shishu Ranjan Chakma says:

    I am a Bangladeshi Buddhist monk student and studying at Mahachulalogkornrajavidyalaya University, Bangkok, Thailand. I have completed Bachelor of Arts in Buddhist Religion and Chinese Studies in 2014, now I am preparing for my Master of Arts in Chinese Societies and Mahayana Buddhist Studies.

    As your conference topic is almost similar with my study course, I am very interested to participate in your upcoming conference as an audience (listener) participant.

    I will be happy if you will allow in the conference as lastener participant. Kindly inform me what kind documents I need to submit at the Czech Embassy,Bangkok to be sufficient for receiving visa.

    Thanking you!
    Best regards,
    Shishu Ranjan Chakma
    Bangkok, Thailand.

  6. Martin Lavicka says:

    Dear Shishu Ranjan Chakma,

    the registration for abstract submission for the conference is already over. Please check the Czech Embassy requirements for obtaining visa, however, from our experience invitation letter for passive participants is usually not sufficient, embassies usually accept only letter of invitation for participants who are presenting their papers at the conference.

    Best regards,

    Martin Lavicka

  7. Shishu Ranjan Chakma says:

    Dear Sir,

    Thanks for your qucick and kind responsed. As you said abstract submission for the conference is already over and an invitation letter for passive participants is usually not suffficient or not accepted.

    I will be happy and grateful to you if the organizers can help and favour me for the visa process to participate in the conference as I am a student and preparing for the Master of Arts degree.

    Best regards,

    Shishu Ranjan Chakma
    Bangkok, Thailand.

  8. Jakub Zbýtovský says:

    Dear sirs,

    I would like to ask as a student, who is studying bachelor’s degree, but haven’t obtained any academic degree so far. What am I supposed to write in field “Academic Degree”, which is required? Or is this conference only for people who have already finished at least their bachelor’s degree?

    Thank you.
    Best regards,
    Jakub Zbýtovský

  9. Martin Lavicka says:

    Dear Jakub
    You can simply write bachelor degree. This information is only for us to know, what type of audience will be participating in our conference.

    Best regards,


  10. Jagoda says:


    Where I can find pictures from conference?

    Thanks in advance for reply,

    Best, Jagoda.

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