Buddhism in the Global Eye, Aug 10-12, 2016


August 10-12, 2016


UBC | St. John’s College
Social Lounge | 2111 Lower Mall

Buddhism in the Global Eye: Beyond East and West

August 10-12, 2016

The 6th Annual Tung Lin Kok Yuen Canada Foundation Conference (Hosted by the The Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation Program in Buddhism and Contemporary Society, Jessica L. Main, director) at UBC, and co-sponsored by The Modernization of Buddhism in Global Perspective Project (SSHRC Insight Grant, John S. Harding, Victor Sogen Hori, Alexander Soucy, co-investigators)

This conference has been called to re-examine the widely held assumption that modern Buddhism is Buddhism with Western characteristics, and to attempt to map out a better paradigm for explaining the modernization of Buddhism. It takes seriously the concept of globalization: Buddhist transformation in Asia and in the West are not seen as distinct but as related, taking place in communication across multiple nodes that cross East-West lines.

Basic conference schedule

  • August 10: registration opens at noon, afternoon panels, evening keynote #1
  • August 11: full day of panel presentations, evening keynote #2
  • August 12: morning panels, end by noon, farewell luncheon

Download full schedule Download abstracts

To Register

The registration fee is $140 (payable by credit card, single day and half day rates also available). Registrants will receive a delegate package, as well as meals and refreshments during the event.

Registration closed

Abbreviated Schedule

Wednesday, August 10

11:30 AM onwards

1:30 – 3:00 PM PANEL 1 East/West–West/East
Victor Sōgen Hori (McGill University)
Jeffrey Schroeder (University of Oregon)
Sebastian Musch (Hochschule für Jüdische Studien, Heidelberg, Germany)
Jingjing Li (McGill University)

3:30 – 5:00 PM PANEL 2 Asian Agency
Paride Stortini (University of Chicago)
Mick Deneckere (Ghent University, Belgium)
Rev. Soorakkulame Pemaratana (University of Pittsburgh)
Lina Verchery (Harvard University)


“Japanese Buddhism’s ‘Western’ Turn: South/Southeast Asia and the Forging of the Japanese Buddhist Modern”

Richard Jaffe (Duke University)
Asian Centre Auditorium 1871 West Mall, V6T 1Z2

The first keynote address this year will be given by Professor Richard Jaffe of Duke University. A specialist of Japanese Buddhism and modernity, Richard Jaffe is currently working on a study of travel and encounters between Japanese and other Buddhists during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, as well as overseeing the publication of five volumes of the writings of D. T. Suzuki.

Thursday, August 11

9:00 – 10:30 PM PANEL 3 Tradition and Authenticity
Shou Jen Kuo (University of California, Riverside)
Christopher Emory-Moore (University of Waterloo)
Christopher Hiebert (University of Virginia)
Casey Collins (University of British Columbia)

11:00 – 12:30 PM PANEL 4 Nationalism and Politics
Barb Clayton (Mount Allison University)
Douglas Ober (University of British Columbia)
Justin Stein (University of Toronto)
John Nelson (University of San Francisco)

2:30 – 4:00 PM PANEL 5 Gender, Race, and Power
Isabel Essebag (McGill University)
Ryan Anningson (Wilfrid Laurier University-University of Waterloo)
Marybeth White (Wilfrid Laurier University)
Alexander Soucy (Saint Mary’s University)

*4:30 – 5:40 PM PANEL 6 Monastics and Modernity
Jack Chia (Cornell University)
Ven. Sirinanda Bandagiriye (Saint Mary’s University)
Silong Li (Peking University)

*4:30 – 5:40 PM PANEL 7 Interpretations and Translations
Jessica Zu (Princeton University)
Haema Sivanesan (Art Gallery of Victoria)
Elizabeth Williams-Oerberg (University of Copenhagen)


“Buddhism and Global Secularisms”

David McMahan (Franklin and Marshall College)
Asian Centre Auditorium 1871 West Mall, V6T 1Z2

The second keynote will be given by Professor David McMahan of Franklin and Marshall College. With his research on Buddhism, modernity, and Buddhism modernism, David McMahan has pushed the field beyond earlier east vs. west paradigms.

Friday, August 12

*8:50 – 10:00 AM PANEL 8 Transnational Networks
Yulianti (University of Leiden / Universitas Gadjah Mada)
Rev. Jue Qian (Independent Scholar) & Janet McLellan (Wilfrid Laurier University)
Jason Ellsworth (Dalhousie University)

*8:50 –10:00 AM PANEL 9 Intra-Asian Communications
Lei Ying (Harvard University)
Elsa Ngar-sze Lau (Lancaster University)
Erik Hammerstrom (Pacific Lutheran University)

10:30 –12:00 AM PANEL 10 Local Histories and Global Forms
Victoria Montrose (University of Southern California)
Jessica L. Main (University of British Columbia)
John Harding (University of Lethbridge)
Kai Sheng (Tsing-Hua University)


***Please note that, due to the very small size of our organizing committee, we can only assist international attendees who require visa letters and other documents if their papers are selected for presentation at the conference. We appreciate your understanding in this matter.