Paper, Jordan 1938-
Paper, Jordan 1938-
Born December 3, 1938, in Baltimore, MD; son of Joseph I. (a judge) and Matilda B. (a ballet dancer) Paper; married Nancy Winegardner, 1959 (marriage ended, 1972); married Li C. Chuang, 1974; children: (second marriage) Eli Hsuan-ming, Leila Hsuan-li. Ethnicity: "Semite." Education: University of Chicago, A.B., 1960; University of Wisconsin-Madison, M.A., 1965, Ph.D., 1971; attended Standford University, Taipei, Taiwan, 1965-66.
Home—Barry Sound, Ontario, Canada. Office—242 VC, York University, Toronto, Ontario M3S 1P3, Canada. E-mail—[email protected]
Indiana State University, Terre Haute, assistant professor of East Asian history, 1967-72; York University, Toronto, Ontario, 1972-2004, began as associate professor, became full professor of religious studies and East Asian studies, professor emeritus, 2004—. Visiting professor, Ching-i University (Taichung, Taiwan), 1973-74.
Canadian Society for the Study of Religion, American Academy of Religion, Society for the Study of Chinese Religion.
Guide to Chinese Prose, G.K. Hall (Boston, MA), 1973, 2nd edition, 1984.
The Fu-Tzu: A Post-Han Confucian Text, E.J. Brill (Long Island City, NY), 1987.
Offering Smoke: The Sacred Pipe and Native American Religion, University of Idaho Press (Moscow, ID), 1988.
The Spirits Are Drunk: Comparative Approaches to Chinese Religion, State University of New York Press (Albany, NY), 1995.
Through the Earth Darkly: Female Spirituality in Comparative Perspective, Continuum (New York, NY), 1997.
The Chinese Way in Religion, 2nd edition, Wadsworth Publishing (Belmont, CA), 1998.
Chinese Religion Illustrated (CD-ROM version), Wadsworth Publishing, 1998.
The Mystic Experience: A Descriptive and Comparative Analysis, State University of New York Press (Albany, NY), 2004.
The Deities Are Many: A Polytheistic Theology, State University of New York Press (Albany, NY), 2005.
Native North American Religious Traditions: Dancing for Life, Praeger (Westport, CT), 2007.
In The Spirits Are Drunk: Comparative Approaches to Chinese Religion, scholar Jordan Paper concentrates his research on popular religious practices in China rather than the big three religions and philosophies associated with Chinese culture—Confucianism, Daoism, and Buddhism. Instead, he looks at the importance of popular religious practices and the ways in which those practices compare to similar rituals used in Native American religions. In particular, Paper draws a distinction between shamanistic communication with the supernatural (in which the spirit of the shaman ascends to the gods) and mediumistic communication (in which the gods or spirits are drawn down into the body of the medium). "The centrality of female spirits and goddesses and the role of women in spirituality receive some attention," noted a reviewer for Philosophy East and West. Paper concludes by examining the ways in which the leader of the nineteenth-century Taiping Rebellion, Hong Xiuquan, reenvisioned Christianity on Chinese terms.
Jordan Paper told CA: "My motivation for writing is to make available ways of understanding other religions, the nature of religion as the central aspect of culture, and ecstatic religious experience."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
American Anthropologist, December, 1990, Alexander von Gernet, review of Offering Smoke: The Sacred Pipe and Native American Religion, p. 1040.
American Ethnologist, May, 1993, Kenneth M. Morrison, review of Offering Smoke, p. 428.
Choice: Current Reviews for Academic Libraries, June, 1995, J.P. McDermott, review of The Spirits Are Drunk: Comparative Approaches to Chinese Religion, p. 1614; April, 1998, review of Through the Earth Darkly: Female Spirituality in Comparative Perspective, p. 1389.
CM Magazine, September, 1989, review of Offering Smoke, p. 240.
Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, June, 1991, Robert E. Sanderson, review of Offering Smoke, p. 236.
Journal of Asian Studies, August, 1995, Alan Cole, review of The Spirits Are Drunk, p. 836.
Journal of Church and State, summer, 1990, Sugie Williams Barrow, review of Offering Smoke.
Musk-Ox, winter, 1989, review of Offering Smoke.
Philosophy East and West, October, 1996, review of The Spirits Are Drunk, p. 597.
Western Historical Quarterly, August, 1990, Larry Burt, review of Offering Smoke, p. 372.
York University,http://www.yorku.ca/ (January 27, 2008), author biography.