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Author Name:    Bruun, Ole

Title:   Fengshui in China: Geomantic Divination between State Orthodoxy and Popular Religion

Binding:   Hardcover

Book Condition:   Very Good

Publisher:    University of Hawaii Press 

ISBN Number:   0824826728 / 9780824826727

Seller ID:   Z0824826728Z2

0824826728 Crisp, clean, unread hardcover with light shelfwear to the dust jacket and a publisher's mark to one edge - Nice!

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For well over a century, Chinese fengshui--or "geomancy"--has interested Western laymen and scholars. Today, hundreds of popular manuals claim to use its principles in their advice on how people can increase their wealth, happiness, longevity. This study is quite different, approaching fengshui from an academic angle. The focus is on fengshui's significance in China, but the recent history of its reinterpretation in the West is also depicted. The author argues that fengshui serves as an alternative tradition of cosmological knowledge, which is used to explain a range of everyday occurrences in rural areas such as disease, mental disorders, accidents, and common mischief. Although Chinese authorities have opposed the tradition for centuries, nonetheless it has been used by almost everyone as an aspect of popular cosmology. Opposing the Chinese collectivist ethos and moralizing from above, fengshui represents an alternative vision of reality, while interpreting essential Chinese values in a way that sanctions selfish motivations and behavior. The study includes a historical account of fengshui over the last 150 years, augmented by the results of anthropological fieldwork on contemporary practices in two Chinese rural areas.



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