Teng Xu

Contemporary Chinese popular religion

My interests include religion, secularisation, modernity, gender, emotion, and love. I am also interested in the Chinese population in Paris, France.

My proposed research at the UCSB deals with the impact of modernity on traditional death rituals in an urbanising region of Southern China. My own experience with these rituals led to my interest in the topic and enabled me to see not only the importance of funerals for the bereaved, but also the cultural richness in these events. Through bringing together the voices of local people, I aspire to write ethnography that provides the political, economic, and historical backgrounds for current development so as to help the reader (and myself) understand Chinese cultures.

I consider myself a language enthusiast. I enjoy learning new languages in my spare time. Apart from English and Mandarin, I speak fluent Cantonese and Teochew and a bit of French and Hakka.

Academic History

  • 2010-2011: Inter-university exchange programme, Université Paris Ouest Nanterre La Défense
  • B.A., Renmin University of China
  • M.A., University of Oxford


Teaching Experience

  • Fall 2015  –  RG ST 21/EACS 21: Zen Buddhism  –  Dr Gregory Hillis

Conference Papers

  • ‘Romantic love as subjective experience.’ 6th Annual Postgraduate Student Forum, Department of Anthropology, The Chinese University of Hong Kong. 17-18 Jan 2014.
  • ‘Place of worship, place of encounter: a Chinese association in Paris.’ Oxford Migration Studies Society 2013 Conference, University of Oxford. 4 May 2013.