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date: 17 May 2022

Abstract and Keywords

What are the biblical foundations on which Protestant Christian activist lawyers build not only their practices but their vision of a renewed China? This chapter examines the biblical premises and understandings that motivate and sustain Protestant activist lawyers in the pursuit of their legal and religious ideals in an increasingly repressive political context. Drawing on extensive sociological research on leading rights lawyers between 2009–2015, the chapter shows how the Bible is integral to their academic and spiritual callings; how they draw on core doctrines of human nature, dignity, equality, freedom, justice, love, fairness, and forgiveness to shape their practices; and the ways that biblical understandings infuse their pursuit of basic legal freedoms, an open civil society, and a restraint on power in a transformed China.

Keywords: legal freedoms, rights lawyers, weiquan, rights defense, rule of law, righteousness, Party state, civil society, legal system, criminal defense law

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