Ancestral Customs on the Shandong Peninsula Today: A Case Study of Ancestor Worship in the Yu Clan(于氏)During the Spring Festival

Xiaoyu Yu (Advanced Institute for Confucian Studies, Shandong University )

The clan is an important part of the patriarchal social system in China. In traditional Chinese society, the clan is itself a form of social organization and at the same time is a vehicle for ancestor worship activities in folk belief systems. Currently, research on clan-related activities based in folk belief systems is concentrated in the southern part of China, with comparatively few studies in the north. This paper describes the first study of its kind on the Shandong peninsula, which is situated in the northern part of the country. The paper will provide details of research over the past decade about activities related to ancestor worship in the Shandong peninsula and examine why clan-based activities have declined in the north. This will, in part, explain the imbalance in research between the north and south.

Part of V3-05 The Diversity of Folk Religious Beliefs in Contemporary Chinese Society, Wednesday, October 11, 7:30 pm–9:30 pm