Advertisement

Adjudicating the Sacred: The Fates of “Native” Religious Endowments in India and Hong Kong

Chapter

Abstract

Laws governing religious endowments adjudicated how endowments would be governed and taxed, as well as what actually constituted religion and legitimate religious practice. While the Hindu endowment and Muslim waqf were recognized by colonial law, the tong, the Chinese endowment, in British Malaya and Hong Kong, was seen to go against the British rule against perpetuities. Although exceptions were made for religious charitable trusts in India, colonials in Hong Kong did not deem the tong as charitable or religious, relegating it to the world of family inheritance (private) or business and corporate law. Using both ethnographic and historical evidence, this chapter will show how endowments are at once shaped by secular law but also serve to contest and constitute the religious.

Keywords

Endowments India Hong Kong Tong Mortmain Parsis 

References

Primary Sources

  1. Choa Cheow Neoh v. Spottiswoode (1869), Straits Law Reports, Heap Lee & Co., 1877.Google Scholar
  2. Ip Cheung Kwok v. Sin Hua Bank Trustee Ltd and Others (1990), HKCA 356; CACV 79/1988.Google Scholar
  3. Limji Nowroji Banaji v. Bapuji Ruttonji Limbuwalla (I.L.R. 1887 (11) Bom).Google Scholar
  4. Tarachand v. Soonabai (I.L.R. 1909 (33) Bom).Google Scholar
  5. Yeap Cheah Neo v. Ong Cheng Neo (1875), L.R. 6 P.C. 381 of 1875.Google Scholar

Secondary Sources

  1. Agnes, Flavia. “Parsi Law.” In Oxford International Encyclopedia of Legal History, edited by Stanley N. Katz. New York: Oxford University Press, 2009.Google Scholar
  2. Anderson, B. R. O. G. Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism. London and New York: Verso, 1991.Google Scholar
  3. Appadurai, Arjun. Worship and Conflict under Colonial Rule: A South Indian Case. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1981.Google Scholar
  4. Asad, Talal. Genealogies of Religion: Discipline and Reasons of Power in Christianity and Islam. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1993.Google Scholar
  5. ———. Formations of the Secular: Christianity, Islam, Modernity. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2003.Google Scholar
  6. Basu, Srimati. She Comes to Take Her Rights: Indian Women, Property, and Propriety. Albany: State University of New York Press, 1999.Google Scholar
  7. Bayly, Christopher Alan. Empire and Information: Intelligence Gathering and Social Communication in India, 1780–1870, vol. 1. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996.Google Scholar
  8. Benhabib, Seyla. Situating the Self: Gender, Community, and Postmodernism in Contemporary Ethics. New York: Routledge, 1992.Google Scholar
  9. Benton, Laura. Law and Colonial Cultures: Legal Regimes in World History, 1400–1900. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002.Google Scholar
  10. ———. A Search for Sovereignty: Law and Geography in European Empires, 1400–1900. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009.Google Scholar
  11. Berger, Peter L. The Sacred Canopy: Elements of a Sociological Theory of Religion. New York: Anchor Books, 1967.Google Scholar
  12. Beverley, Eric Lewis. “Property, Authority and Personal Law: Waqf in Colonial South Asia.” South Asia Research 31, no. 2 (2011): 155–82.Google Scholar
  13. Bhargava, Rajeev, ed. Secularism and Its Critics. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1998.Google Scholar
  14. ———. “The Distinctiveness of Indian Secularism.” In The Future of Secularism, edited by T. N. Srinivasan. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2007.Google Scholar
  15. Birla, Ritu. Stages of Capital: Law, Culture, and Market Governance in Late Colonial India. Durham and London: Duke University Press, 2009.Google Scholar
  16. Brown, Rajeswary Ampalavanar. “Islamic Endowments and the Land Economy in Singapore: The Genesis of an Ethical Capitalism, 1830–2007.” South East Asia Research 16, no. 3 (2008): 343–403.Google Scholar
  17. Casanova, J. Public Religions in the Modern World. Chicago and London: University of Chicago Press, 1994.Google Scholar
  18. Chopra, Preeti. A Joint Enterprise: Indian Elites and the Making of British Bombay. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2011.Google Scholar
  19. Chung, Stephanie Po-Yin. “Understanding ‘Chinese Customs’: Sinchew Rulings in the Straits Settlements, 1830s–1870s.” In Legal Histories of the British Empire: Laws, Engagements and Legacies, edited by Shaunnagh Dorsett and John McLaren. Oxon and New York: Routledge, 2014.Google Scholar
  20. ———. “Chinese Tong as British Trust: Institutional Collisions and Legal Disputes in Urban Hong Kong, 1860s–1980s.” Modern Asian Studies 44, no. 6 (2010): 1409–432.Google Scholar
  21. ———. “Western Law vs. Asian Customs: Legal Disputes on Business Practices in India, British Malaya and Hong Kong, 1850s–1930s.” Asia Europe Journal 1, no. 4 (2003): 527–39.Google Scholar
  22. Cohn, Bernard S. Colonialism and Its Forms of Knowledge: The British in India. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1996.Google Scholar
  23. Cooray, Anton, et al. “The Non-Recognition of Chinese Ancestral Worship Trusts as Charitable Trusts in Hong Kong: With Some South Asian Comparisons.” Third Sector Review 8, no. 1 (2002): 153.Google Scholar
  24. Derrett, J. D. M. Religion, Law and the State in India. London: Faber & Faber, 1968.Google Scholar
  25. Desai, S. F. History of the Bombay Parsi Punchayet, 1860–1960. Mumbai: Trustees of the Parsi Punchayet Funds and Properties, 1977.Google Scholar
  26. Dobbelaere, K. “Trend Report: Secularization: A Multi-dimensional Concept.” Current Sociology 29, no. 2 (1981): 3.Google Scholar
  27. Dorsett, Shaunnagh, and John McLaren. Legal Histories of the British Empire: Laws, Engagements and Legacies. New York: Routledge, 2014.Google Scholar
  28. Dossal, Mariam. Theatre of Conflict, City of Hope: Mumbai 1660 to Present Times. Mumbai: Oxford University Press, 2010.Google Scholar
  29. Durkheim, E., and K. E. Fields. The Elementary Forms of Religious Life. New York: Free Press, 1995.Google Scholar
  30. Faure, David. China and Capitalism: A History of Business Enterprise in Modern China, vol. 1. Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press, 2006.Google Scholar
  31. Foucault, Michel. Discipline and Punish. New York: Random House, 1979.Google Scholar
  32. Galanter, Marc. “Secularism, East and West; Hinduism, Secularism, and the Indian Judiciary.” In Secularism and Its Critics. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1998.Google Scholar
  33. Ghosh, A. The Law of Endowments (Hindu and Mohammedan). Calcutta: Eastern Law House, 1938.Google Scholar
  34. Gilsenan, Michael. “Translating Colonial Fortunes: Dilemmas of Inheritance in Muslim and English Laws Across a Nineteenth-Century Diaspora.” Comparative Studies of South Asia, Africa and the Middle East 31, no. 2 (2011): 355–71.Google Scholar
  35. Greeley, Andrew. Unsecular Man: The Persistence of Religion. New York: Schocken Books, 1985.Google Scholar
  36. Kozlowski, G. C. Muslim Endowments and Society in British India. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1985.Google Scholar
  37. Kwong, Chunwah. The Public Role of Religion in Post-colonial Hong Kong. New York: Peter Lang, 2002.Google Scholar
  38. Larson, G. J. Religion and Personal Law in Secular India: A Call to Judgment. Bloomington and Indianapolis: Indiana University Press, 2001.Google Scholar
  39. Luckmann, T. The Invisible Religion: The Problem of Religion in Modern Society. New York: Macmillan, 1967.Google Scholar
  40. Macuch, Maria. “Charitable Foundations, I. In the Sasanian Period.” Encyclopaedia Iranica 381 (1991).Google Scholar
  41. ———. “Law in Pre-modern Zoroastrianism.” The Wiley Blackwell Companion to Zoroastrianism (2015): 289–98.Google Scholar
  42. Martin, D. A General Theory of Secularization. New York: HarperCollins Publishers, 1979.Google Scholar
  43. Mawani, Renisa, and Iza Hussin. “The Travels of Law: Indian Ocean Itineraries.” Law and History Review 32, no. 4 (2014): 733–47.Google Scholar
  44. Qadir, Abdul. Waqf: Islamic Law of Chartiable Trust. Delhi: Global Vision Publishing House, 2004.Google Scholar
  45. Sharafi, Mitra. Law and Identity in Colonial South Asia: Parsi Legal Culture, 1772–1947. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2014.Google Scholar
  46. ———. “Law and Modern Zoroastrians.” In The Blackwell Companion to the Study of Zoroastrianism, edited by Michael Stausberg and Yuhan Vevaina. Cambridge: Blackwell, 2015.Google Scholar
  47. Singh, Anantdeep. “The Divergence of the Economic Fortunes of Hindus and Muslims in British India: A Comparative Institutional Analysis.” PhD Dissertation. University of Southern California, 2008.Google Scholar
  48. ———. “Forum Shopping in the Middle East and South Asia: Its Impact on Women and the Evolution of Inheritance Codes.” The Journal of Legal Pluralism and Unofficial Law 46, no. 3 (2014): 289–319.Google Scholar
  49. ———. “Zamindars, Inheritance Law and the Spread of the Waqf in the United Provinces at the Turn of the Twentieth Century.” Indian Economic & Social History Review 52, no. 4 (2015): 501–32.Google Scholar
  50. Singer, Amy. Constructing Ottoman Beneficence: An Imperial Soup Kitchen in Jerusalem. Albany: State University of New York Press, 2012.Google Scholar
  51. Sinn, Elizabeth. Power and Charity: A Chinese Merchant Elite in Colonial Hong Kong (with a New Preface), vol. 1. Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press, 2003.Google Scholar
  52. Stebbings, Chantal. “The Commercial Application of the Law of Mortmain.” The Journal of Legal History 10, no. 1 (1989): 37–44.Google Scholar
  53. Stokes, E. The English Utilitarians and India. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1959.Google Scholar
  54. Taylor, Charles. “Modes of Secularism.” In Secularism and Its Critics, edited by R. Bhargava. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1998.Google Scholar
  55. ———. A Secular Age. Cambridge: Belknap Press, 2007.Google Scholar
  56. Turner, V. Dramas, Fields, and Metaphors: Symbolic Action in Human Society. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1974.Google Scholar
  57. van der Veer, P. Imperial Encounters: Religion and Modernity in India and Britain. Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press, 2001.Google Scholar
  58. ———. The Modern Spirit of Asia: The Spiritual and the Secular in China and India. Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press, 2013.Google Scholar
  59. Vevaina, Leilah. “Trust Matters: Parsis and Property in Mumbai.” PhD Dissertation, The New School for Social Research, New York, 2014.Google Scholar
  60. ———. “Good Deeds: Parsi trusts ‘from the womb to the tomb’.” Modern Asian Studies 52, no. 1 (2018): 238–65.Google Scholar
  61. Wadia, Rusheed. “Bombay Parsi Merchants in the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries.” In Parsis in India and the Diaspora, edited by J. R. Hinnells and Alan Williams. London: Routledge, 2008.Google Scholar
  62. Weber, M. The Protestant Ethics and the Spirit of Capitalism (1904/5). Translated by Talcott Parsons with an Introduction by Anthony Giddens. London: Routledge Classics, 2005.Google Scholar
  63. Wilson, B. R. Religion in Secular Society: A Sociological Comment. London: Watts, 1966.Google Scholar
  64. Zelin, Madeleine. “The Firm in Early Modern China.” Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization 71, no. 3 (2009): 623–37.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic DiversityGoettingenGermany

Personalised recommendations