Buddhist Manuscript Cultures explores how religious and cultural practices in premodern Asia were shaped by literary and artistic traditions as well as by Buddhist material culture. This study of Buddhist texts focuses on the significance of their material forms rather than their doctrinal contents, and examines how and why they were made.
Collectively, the book offers cross-cultural and comparative insights into the transmission of Buddhist knowledge and the use of texts and images as ritual objects in the artistic and aesthetic traditions of Buddhist cultures. Drawing on case studies from India, Gandhara, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Mongolia, China and Nepal, the chapters included investigate the range of interests and values associated with producing and using written texts, and the roles manuscripts and images play in the transmission of Buddhist texts and in fostering devotion among Buddhist communities.
Contributions are by reputed scholars in Buddhist Studies and represent diverse disciplinary approaches from religious studies, art history, anthropology, and history. This book will be of interest to scholars and students working in these fields.
Taylor and Francis; December 2008
- ISBN 9781134002429
- Read online, or download in secure PDF or secure EPUB format
- Title: Buddhist Manuscript Cultures
- Author: Stephen C. Berkwitz (ed.); Juliane Schober (ed.); Claudia Brown (ed.)
In The Press
"Buddhist Manuscript Culture is a welcome addition to the expanding scholarly discourse on Buddhism and materiality. The editors, Stephen C. Berkwitz, Juliane Schober, and Claudia Brown, have done an admirable job of bringing together a diverse and nicely balanced set of perspectives on Buddhist texts." - Jacob N. Kinnard, Iliff School of Theology; The Journal of Asian Studies, Volume 69/3, August 2010
About The Author
Stephen C. Berkwitz is Associate Professor of Religious Studies at Missouri State University. His research focuses on Buddhist Studies in Sri Lanka. At present he is preparing "South Asian Buddhism: A Survey", also for publication with Routledge.
Juliane Schober is Associate Professor in the Department of Religious Studies, Arizona State University. Her research focuses on Theravada Buddhism in Burma, particularly on ritual, sacred geography, and the veneration of icons in the modern state cult.
Claudia Brown is Professor of Art History, Arizona State University. Her research interest is the History of Art with an emphasis in Chinese painting.