Absolutely not a business: Chinese Buddhist scriptural presses and distributors, 1860s – 1930s

Gregory Adam Scott

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


This chapter argues that several of the Buddhist xylographic scriptural presses that emerged in late nineteenth and early twentieth-century China adopted many practices from commercial publishing enterprises, while strongly maintaining the position that their religious publishing endeavours were fundamentally different from that of business-oriented publishers. Through a brief examination of the budgetary procedures and financial reports of a few presses, I aim to demonstrate that even these types of religious presses, which on the face of it were highly conservative, adopted specific material and social technologies of the modern era to expand the size and reach of their printing enterprises. In doing so they did not radically break with the patrimony of Chinese Buddhist print culture, but rather extended it with new technologies and methods.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationKodex
Subtitle of host publicationJahrbuch der Internationalen Buchwissenschaflichen Gesellschaf
EditorsDaria Berg, Giorgio Strafella
Place of PublicationWiesbaden
PublisherHarrassowitz Verlag: Wiesbaden
Number of pages16
ISBN (Print)9783447107280
Publication statusPublished - 15 Dec 2016

Publication series

NameKODEX – Jahrbuch der Internationalen Buchwissenschaftlichen Gesellschaft
ISSN (Print)2193-4983

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