The Formation of "Half the Sky" of Catholicism in the Ming-Qing Dynasties and Its Religious Space: Take Candida Xu as Center
Keywords:Candida Xu, Half the Sky, Social Marginality, women's group missionary strategy, religious space
During the Ming and Qing Dynasties, Catholicism spread from foreign countries to China. Missionaries conformed to women’s role of "Social Marginality" at that time and adopted adaptive women's group missionary strategy, which provided suitable soil and favorable conditions for the formation of "Half the Sky" phenomenon of female believers. With further investigation, it is found that female believers are the main basis for the prosperity and sustainable development of the "Half the Sky" phenomenon, which is closely related to the special religious space that ancient women had under the positioning of "Social Marginality". Among the female believers in the Ming and Qing Dynasties, the most exemplary character is "Female Pillar" Candida Xu, who is well-known in both China and the West. Her historical records are the most comprehensive and detailed, making up for the collective "Aphasia" of female believers in the Ming and Qing Dynasties to a certain extent. Candida Xu made full use of her different kind of free religious activity space, built a women's religious network with herself as the axis, and promoted the establishment of a sizable nursery for girls, which became a key part and an important support of "Half the Sky", and finally made outstanding contributions to the formation of "Half the Sky" of Catholicism in the Ming and Qing Dynasties and the expansion of its religious space.