Songs of Justice -- Judicial Rituals in Western Hunan(正義之歌--湘西的神判儀式)

主講人: 康豹教授(中央研究院近代史研究所特聘研究員)
主辦單位: 中央研究院近代史研究所
與談人: 賀大衛教授(國立政治大學民族學系)
時間: 2019 年 09 月 26 日(四)下午 2:30 至 下午 4:30
地點: 中央研究院近代史研究所檔案館第二會議室
For nearly three centuries, scholars and officials have noted the key role of judicial rituals in dispute resolution among the peoples of Western Hunan (Xiangxi 湘西), most notably the importance of blood oaths (chixue 吃血) staged at temples to deities known as the White Emperor Heavenly Kings (Baidi tianwang 白帝天王). However, the bulk of previous research has focused on Qing-dynasty and Republican-era rites featuring state-approved deities that were staged in officially sanctioned temples located in relatively urbanized areas. Moreover, due to the nature of the available source materials (mainly accounts in local gazetteers, often copied nearly verbatim in surveys conducted during the twentieth century), most accounts tend to stress the role of written texts, as opposed to speech acts and other forms of oral performances, with only a few scholars attempting to clarify the types of specialists who performed such rites, the languages they used, etc. This paper will present a more diverse and vibrant picture, for other types of judicial rites exist as well, practices based on indigenous oral traditions and speech acts rarely visible in historical sources and having little or nothing to do with the Heavenly Kings or any other temple cult. Such practices only become apparent in the course of conducting field research (and especially interviewing ritual specialists) or reading the results of others who have done such work.