The Flow of the Traders' Goddess

Khun Eng Kuah-Pearce and Yedan Huang

in Narratives of Free Trade

Published by Hong Kong University Press

Published in print December 2011 | ISBN: 9789888083534
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9789882209275 | DOI:
The Flow of the Traders' Goddess

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This chapter examines the cultural importance of Chinese immigration from Guangdong to the United States and the impact of the Chinese religious practices based on Tianhou in the United States. It traces the development of Tianhou in the early Northern Song Dynasty and its expanding network throughout the world to its eventual impact on the formation of San Francisco. Against the background of this diasporic religious practice and the corresponding life experience of Chinese-Americans, the legacy of trade in China takes on dimensions that are fundamentally transnational in shaping the history and cultural identity of the United States. The chapter also suggests that the ‘United States’ has been impressed fundamentally by a religious experience whose sense of commerce and kinship is not reducible to the axioms of Adam Smith.

Keywords: China; United States; Tianhou; religion; transnationalism; migration; San Francisco; diaspora

Chapter.  5447 words. 

Subjects: Asian History

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