Kristian Petersen Lecture: "Interpreting Islam in China"


Location: 1050 Jenkins Nanovic Halls

Petersen 1200

About the Lecture

“Interpreting Islam in China” 

A distinctive Chinese Islamic intellectual tradition emerged during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) and Qing Dynasty (1644-1911). Chinese Muslims established an educational system, scripture hall education (jingtang jiaoyu 經堂教育), which utilized an Islamic curriculum made up of Arabic, Persian, and Chinese works. The Han Kitab, a corpus of Chinese language Islamic texts developed within this system, reinterpreted Islam through the religio-philosophical lens of Buddhist, Daoist, and Confucian terminology. Several Han Kitab texts were produced by a group of self-identified “Confucian Muslim” scholars (Huiru 回儒).

This presentation traces the contours of the Sino-Islamic intellectual tradition and serves as an introduction to Kristian Petersen’s book, Interpreting Islam in China: Pilgrimage, Scripture, and Language in the Han Kitab (Oxford University Press, 2017).

About the Speaker

Kristian Petersen is an assistant professor in the Department of Philosophy & Religious Studies at Old Dominion University. His research and teaching interests include Theory and Methodology in the Study of Religion, Islamic Studies, Chinese Religions, and Media Studies. He specializes in two main areas of research 1) the development of Islam in China, and 2) Muslims in Cinema.

Originally published at