Political Constitution and the Protection of Religious Freedom: A Jurisprudential Reading of Article 36 of the Chinese Constitution

  • Zheng Yushuang
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Religion, Politics, and Policy book series (PSRPP)


The Chinese Constitution of 1982, Article 36, calls for the protection of religious freedom. But Westerners should understand that constitutionalism in China reflects a very different political context. There is a hierarchy of values in the Chinese Constitution, the author argues, which ranks the supremacy of the Communist Party and the construction of a modern socialist society above the protection of personal freedoms. Indeed, the term “ protection” is transformed into something more akin to management and control in the Chinese context. Political reforms in China, including the new protections for property rights, all reflect this hierarchy of values. Even so, says the author, the growing body of case law on property disputes shows potential for gradual movement toward liberty in religion as well.


China Constitution political liberties political reform religious freedom 


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© Zheng Yushuang 2014

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  • Zheng Yushuang

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