Faculty in Buddhist Studies
Dan Arnold is a scholar of Indian Buddhist philosophy, which he engages in a constructive and comparative way. Considering Indian Buddhist philosophy as integral to the broader tradition of Indian philosophy, he has particularly focused on topics at issue among Buddhist schools of thought (chiefly, those centering on the works of Nāgārjuna and of Dharmakīrti), often considering these in conversation with critics from the orthodox Brahmanical school of Pūrva Mīmāṃsā. His first book – Buddhists, Brahmins, and Belief: Epistemology in South Asian Philosophy of Religion (Columbia University Press, 2005) – won an American Academy of Religion Award for Excellence in the Study of Religion. His second book – Brains, Buddhas, and Believing: The Problem of Intentionality in Classical Buddhist and Cognitive-Scientific Philosophy of Mind (Columbia University Press, 2012) – centers on the contemporary philosophical category of intentionality, taken as useful in thinking through central issues in classical Buddhist epistemology and philosophy of mind. He is presently working on an anthology of Madhyamaka texts in translation, to appear in the series "Historical Sourcebooks in Classical Indian Thought." His essays have appeared in such journals as Philosophy East and West, the Journal of Indian Philosophy, Asian Philosophy, the Journal of the International Association of Buddhist Studies, the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, and Revue Internationale de Philosophie.
Prof. Arnold participated in the 2012 NEH Summer Institute "Investigating Consciousness: Buddhist and Contemporary Philosophical Perspectives." His most recent article is "The Deceptive Simplicity of Nāgārjuna’s Arguments against Motion: Another Look at Mūlamadhyamakakārikā Chapter 2," in the Journal of Indian Philosophy.
Steven Collins is Chester D. Tripp Professor in the Humanities, in the Department of South Asian Languages and Civilizations, and the College; Associate Faculty in the Divinity School. He works on the texts and civilizational history of Buddhism in pre-modern and modern South and Southeast Asia. His books include Selfless Persons: Imagery and Thought in Theravada Buddhism; Nirvana and Other Buddhist Felicities: Utopias of the Pali Imaginaire; A Pali Grammar for Students; Nirvana: concept, imagery, narrative; and Civilisation et femmes célibataires dans le bouddhisme en Asie du Sud et du Sud-Est: Une étude de 'genre'. He is currently working on a book entitled Pali Practices of the Self.
Paul Copp is Assistant Professor in the Department of East Asian Languages and Civilizations. His graduate courses related to Buddhist Studies focus on the close reading of texts in Classical Chinese, on the exploration of material and visual cultures of Chinese Buddhism, and on critical engagement with the academic field of Buddhist Studies. He is completing a book manuscript, tentatively called The Incantatory Body: Dhāraṇīs and Material Efficacy in Chinese Buddhist Practice, 600-1000, which explores amuletic and philosophical traditions of Chinese Buddhist incantation practice. New projects center on a large-scale study of Esoteric Buddhist thought and practice in sixth through tenth centuries China, taken in the context of older and parallel traditions of Buddhist and Chinese ritual. These projects include studies of Dunhuang manuscripts; of Buddhist sites in Gansu, Sichuan, and Yunnan; and of the commentaries, treatises, and ritual manuals of the transmitted tradition.
Matthew Kapstein has worked primarily on the philosophical traditions of later Indian and Tibetan Buddhism, and on the relationship of these with the practical and experiential aspects of religious life, including art, ritual, meditation, and yoga. He has published a collaborative volume, Buddhism in Contemporary Tibet: Religious Revival and Cultural Identity; a study of the transformation of religious ideas, The Tibetan Assimilation of Buddhism: Conversion, Contestation and Memory; a book devoted to Buddhist philosophy, Reason's Traces: Identity and Interpretation in Indian and Tibetan Buddhist Thought; and a volume devoted to the comparative study of religious experience, The Presence of Light: Divine Radiance and Religious Experience (University of Chicago Press 2004). Recent work includes a general introduction to the study of Tibet, The Tibetans (Blackwell 2006); a collaborative volume, Contributions to the Cultural History of Early Tibet (Brill 2007); and Buddhism between Tibet and China (2009). Among forthcoming projects are studies of Tibet-China religious relations, Tantric religions at Dunhuang, and the Columbia University Press's Sources of Tibetan Tradition. Professor Kapstein is a member of the governing board of the International Association for Tibetan Studies and of the Tibetan Himalayan Digital Library, and an editor of the journal History of Religions. He is also director of Tibetan Studies in the division of religious studies of the École Pratique des Hautes Études in Paris. Personal webpage: http://home.uchicago.edu/~mkapstei/.
Professor Ketelaar is currently finishing a book on the importance of the barbarian and the frontier in the construction of Japanese national identity and national history, tentatively titled Ezo: A History of Japan's Eastern Frontier (Princeton University Press). He is beginning a book project on the roles and meanings of love and eros in Japanese historical imaginations which will look at issues ranging from the relationship of Izanami and Izanagi to Shunga to the marriage of Emperors. Professor Ketelaar is also a governing board member for the undergraduate year-abroad program in Kyoto at the Kyoto Center for Japanese Studies.
Katherine R.Tsiang Mino
Katherine R.Tsiang Mino is Associate Director of the Center for the Art of East Asia in the Department of Art History at the University of Chicago. She has a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in Art History and does research in Buddhist art from the early medieval and medieval periods of Chinese history. She is interested in aspects of the relationships between images, texts, and Buddhist belief and practice. She is currently coordinating a center collaborative research and innovative digital imaging project on the reconstruction and recontextualization of the sixth century Buddhist cave temples of Xiangtangshan in Hebei, China. The project is funded by grants from the Carpenter Foundation and the Getty Foundation. For more information on activities and programs of the Center for the Art of East Asia, see the center and caves project websites: http://caea.uchicago.edu/; http://xiangtangshan.uchicago.edu/.
Christian Wedemeyer is Associate Professor of the History of Religions in the Divinity School and associate faculty in the Department of South Asian Languages and Civilizations. His work addresses topics of history, literature, and ritual in Indian and Tibetan Buddhism. Within this very general domain, the focus of his research has been the esoteric Buddhist traditions of the Mahayoga Tantras. He has written on the modern historiography of Tantric Buddhism, the question of "antinomianism" in Indian esoteric Buddhism, textual criticism and strategies of legitimating authority in classical Tibetan scholasticism, and the semiology of esoteric Buddhist ritual. He is the author of a text-critical study of one of the principal Indian works on esoteric praxis: Aryadeva's Lamp that Integrates the Practices (Caryamelapakapradipa): The Gradual Path of Vajrayana Buddhism according to the Esoteric Communion Noble Tradition (critically-edited Sanskrit and Tibetan texts, annotated English translation, and study). He has edited a volume with Ronald M. Davidson: Tibetan Buddhist Literature and Praxis: Studies in its Formative Period, 900-1400. His work has appeared in History of Religions, Journal of the American Academy of Religion, Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society, Journal of the American Oriental Society, The Indian International Journal of Buddhist Studies, Encyclopedia of Women and World Religions, and Encyclopedia of Buddhism. Courses he has offered include: "Indian Buddhism," "Tibetan Buddhism," "Mahayana Sutra Literature," "Issues in Indian Esoteric Buddhism," "Ritual in South Asian Buddhism," "Tibetan Auto/biography," "Representation and Ideology in the Study of South Asian Religions."
Wu Hung specializes in early Chinese art, from the earliest years to the Cultural Revolution. His special research interests include relationships between visual forms (architecture, bronze vessels, pictorial carvings and murals, etc.) and ritual, social memory and political discourses. Also the consulting curator for the Smart Museum of Art, Hung is the author of Transience: Chinese Experimental Art at the End of the Twentieth Century (University Of Chicago Press, 1999), Monumentality in Early Chinese Art (Stanford University Press, 1995), Three Thousand Years of Chinese Painting (Yale University Press, 1997), and the forthcoming Remaking Beijing: Tiananmen Square and the Creation of a Political Space. Hung grew up in Beijing and studied at the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing. From 1973 to 1978 he served on the research staff at the Palace Museum, located inside Beijing's Forbidden City. He came to Chicago in 1994.
Brook Ziporyn is a scholar of ancient and medieval Chinese religion and philosophy who has distinguished himself as a premier expositor and translator of some of the most complex philosophical texts and concepts of the Chinese religious traditions. Ziporyn is the author of four published books, including Evil And/Or/As the Good: Omnicentric Holism, Intersubjectivity and Value Paradox in Tiantai Buddhist Thought (Harvard, 2000), The Penumbra Unbound: The Neo-Taoist Philosophy of Guo Xiang(SUNY Press, 2003), and Zhuangzi: The Essential Writings with Selections from Traditional Commentaries (Hackett, 2009). A fifth, Ironies of Oneness and Difference: Coherence in Early Chinese Thought. Prolegomena to the Study of Li 理, will appear later this summer from SUNY Press. Professor Ziporyn received his BA in East Asian Languages and Civilizations from the University of Chicago, and his Ph.D. from the University of Michigan. Prior to joining the Divinity School faculty, Professor Ziporyn taught at Northwestern University (in the religion and philosophy departments) since 1998. Following a year as Visiting Professor of Philosophy at the National University of Singapore, Professor Ziporyn will begin offering courses at the Divinity School in the 2013-2014 academic year.