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The Indigenization of Chinese Churches Before and After the Boxer Rebellion — A Case Study of the Xishiku Church and the Wanghailou Catholic Church

At the end of the nineteenth century, there was a spate of church cases in China, and missionary activity was again challenged since the dissolution of the prohibition. In this context, the styles of new, rebuilt, and restored churches began to change. Some church designers began to consider the choice of architectural style for their churches, and the call for the indigenization of Christianity grew louder and louder. Therefore, this paper takes case studies of two churches built by the missionary Alphonse Favier, the Xishiku Church in Beijing and the Wanghailou Catholic Church in Tianjin. The two churches are analyzed from the perspectives of layout and space, structure and decoration, and the Chinese and Western elements of the churches are classified. Various factors that contributed to the changes in the style of the two churches, such as the architect's background and social factors, are discussed to analyze the reasons for the change. The church cases' short-term and long-term influence on the choice of Chinese church style in the context of the indigenization of Christianity is analyzed concerning other indigenization concepts in society. The combination of these influences and the participation of church designers from different backgrounds has led to the development of Chinese churches through several different stages of development, from predominantly Chinese styles to a combination of Chinese and Western styles, to completely Western styles, and then to a combination of Chinese and Western styles.

Church Cases, Indigenization, Chinese Decoration, Gothic

APA Style

Zou Lin. (2023). The Indigenization of Chinese Churches Before and After the Boxer Rebellion — A Case Study of the Xishiku Church and the Wanghailou Catholic Church. International Journal of Architecture, Arts and Applications, 9(1), 29-36. https://doi.org/10.11648/j.ijaaa.20230901.15

ACS Style

Zou Lin. The Indigenization of Chinese Churches Before and After the Boxer Rebellion — A Case Study of the Xishiku Church and the Wanghailou Catholic Church. Int. J. Archit. Arts Appl. 2023, 9(1), 29-36. doi: 10.11648/j.ijaaa.20230901.15

AMA Style

Zou Lin. The Indigenization of Chinese Churches Before and After the Boxer Rebellion — A Case Study of the Xishiku Church and the Wanghailou Catholic Church. Int J Archit Arts Appl. 2023;9(1):29-36. doi: 10.11648/j.ijaaa.20230901.15

Copyright © 2023 Authors retain the copyright of this article.
This article is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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