Buddhist Asia: Traditions, Transmissions and Transformations

  An NEH Summer Institute ~ May 25 to June 26, 2015 ~ Honolulu, Hawai'i ~ Hosted by the Asian Studies Development Program

Institute Bibliography.

The bibliography provided here is intended to offer some initial orientation for anyone wanting to begin exploring the vast and growing scholarship on Buddhist Asia. The bibliography includes a range of general background texts and English translations of primary texts useful for undergraduate teaching. Following this, entries are organized by region, and include works from a range of disciplinary approaches. Participants are encouraged to make use of the bibliography in preparing for the program and in developing their curriculum projects.

Buddhist Asia Bibliography




Fisher, Robert E. Buddhist Art and Architecture (Thames and Hudson, 1993)


Gethin, Rupert. The Foundations of Buddhism, Rupert Gethin (Oxford University Press, 1998)


Harvey, Peter. An Introduction to Buddhism: Teachings, History, and Practices (Cambridge, 2012)


Heirman, Ann and Stephan Peter Brumbacher, edited. The Spread of Buddhism (Brill, 2007)


Juergensmeyer, Mark and Michael Jerryson, edited. Buddhist Warfare (Oxford, 2010)


Lopez, Donald Jr., edited. Buddhism in Practice (Princeton Univ. Press, 1995)


McMahan, David L., edited. Buddhism in the Modern World (Routledge, 2012)


Paul, Diana. Women and Buddhism: Images of the Feminine in Mahayana Buddhism (University of California, 1985)


Proser, Adrianna, edited. Pilgrimage and Buddhist Art (Yale, 2010)


Robinson, Richard and Willard Johnson, edited. The Buddhist Religion: A Historical Introduction (Wadsworth Publishing, 1997)


Seckel, Dietrich. The Art of Buddhism (Methuen, 1965)


Sen, Tansen, ed., Buddhism across Asia: Networks of Material, Intellectual and Cultural Exchange, Vol. 1. (Institute of Southeast Asian Studies and Manohar Publishers, 2014)


Strong, Jonathan. The Experience of Buddhism: Sources and Interpretations (Cengage, 2007)


Whalen-Bridge, John and Pattana Kitiarsa, edited. Buddhism, Modernity, and the State in Asia: Forms of Engagement (Palgrave Macmillan, 2013)


Wilson, Liz. Family in Buddhism (State University of New York Press, 2013)



Some Key Texts in Translation:


Sutta-Nipata: A New Translation, H. Saddhatissa (Routledge/Curzon: 1995)


The Middle Length Discourses of the Buddha: A New Translation of the Majjhima Nikaya, Bhikku Nanamoli and Bhikkhu Bodhi (Wisdom, 1995)


The Long Discourses of the Buddha: A Translation of the Digha Nikaya, translated by Maurice Walshe (Wisdom, 1995)


Buddhist Wisdom Books : Containing The Diamond Sutra and The Heart Sutra. translated and explained by Edward Conze (Unwin Hyman, 1988)


The Holy Teaching of Vimalakirti: A Mahayana Scripture, translated by Robert Thurman. (Penn State University Press, 1976)


The Lotus Sutra, trans. by Burton Watson (Columbia University Press, 1993)




Bailey, Greg and Ian Mabbett. The Sociology of Early Buddhism, (Cambridge, 2003)


Berkwitz, Stephen. South Asian Buddhism: A Survey (Routledge, 2009)


Berkwitz, Stephen with Juliane Schober and Claudia Brown, edited. Buddhist Manuscript Cultures: Knowledge, Ritual and Art (Routledge, 2009)


Chakrabarti, Uma. The Social Dimensions of Early Buddhism (Oxford, 1987)


Davidson, Ronald M., Indian Esoteric Buddhism: A Social History of the Tantric Movement (Columbia, 2003)


Hirakawa, Akira. A History of Indian Buddhism: From Sakyamuni to Early Mahayana, translated by Paul Groner (University of Hawaii Press, 1990)


Jondhale, Surendra and Johannes Beltz, edited. Reconstructing the World : B.R. Ambedkar and Buddhism in India (Oxford, 2004)


Kalupahana, David. A History of Buddhist Philosophy (University of Hawaii Press, 1992)


Schober, Juliane, edited. Sacred Biography and the Buddhist Traditions of South and Southeast Asia (University of Hawaii Press, 1997)


Schopen, Gregory. Bones, Stones, and Buddhist Monks : Collected Papers on the Archaeology, Epigraphy, and Texts of Monastic Buddhism in India (University of Hawaii Press, 1997)



Central Asia:


Beckwith, Christopher. Tibetan Empire in Central Asia: A Struggle for Great Power among Tibetans, Turks, Arabs and Chinese during the Middle Ages (Princeton, 1987)


Elverskog, Johan. Buddhism and Islam on the Silk Road (University of Pennsylvania, 2010)


Foltz, Richard C. Religions of the Silk Road: Overland Trade and Cultural Exchange from Antiquity to the Fifteenth Century (St. Martin's, 1999)


Gaulier, Simone with Robert Jera-Bezard and Monique Maillard, edited. Buddhism in Afghanistan and Central Asia, 2 volumes (Brill, 1976)


Golden, Peter.  Central Asia in World History (Oxford, 2011)


Millward, James. The Silk Road: A Very Short Introduction (Oxford, 2013)


Moses, Larry. Political Role of Mongol Buddhism (Indiana University Press, 1977)


Puri, Baij Nath. Buddhism in Central Asia (Motilal Benarsidass, 1987)




Brook, Timothy. Praying for Power:  Buddhism and the Formation of Gentry Society in Late-Ming China (Harvard, 1994)


Broughton, Jeffrey Lyle. The Bodhidharma Anthology: The Earliest Records of Zen. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1999.


Chappell, David W. and Masao Ichishima. T'ient'ai Buddhism: An Outline of the Fourfold Teachings (University of Hawaii Press, 1984)


Cook, Francis. Hua-yen Buddhism: The Jewel Net of Indra (University of Pennsylvania Press, 1977)


Faure, Bernard. Ch’an Insights and Oversights: An Epistemological Critique of the Ch’an Traditio (Princeton University Press, 1993)


Gernet, Jacques. Buddhism in Chinese Society: An Economic History from the Fifth to Tenth Centuries (Columbia, 1995)


Grant, Beata. Daughters of Emptiness : Poems of Chinese Buddhist Nuns (Wisdom, 2003)   Gregory, Peter. Inquiry into the Origin of Humanity: An Annotated Translation of Tsung-mi’s Yuan-jen-lun with a Modern Commentary (University of Hawaii Press, 1998)


Hershock, Peter D.. Chan Buddhism (University of Hawaii Press, 2004)


Hubbard, Jamie. Absolute Delusion, Perfect Buddhahood: The Rise and Fall of a Chinese Heresy (University of Hawaii Press, 2001)


Jia, Jinhua. The Hongzhou School of Chan Buddhism: In Eighth- through Tenth-Century China. (State University of New York Press, 2006)


Kieschnick, John. The Impact of Buddhism on Chinese Material Culture (Princeton University Press, 2003)


Li, Qiancheng. Fictions of Enlightenment: Journey to the West, Tower of Myriad Mirrors, and Dream of the Red Chamber. (University of Hawaii Press, 2004)


Mair, Victor. Tang Transformation Texts: A Study of the Buddhist Contributions to the Rise of Vernacular Fiction and Drama in China.  ( Harvard, 1989)


Mollier, Christine. Buddhism and Taoism Face to Face: Scripture, Ritual and Iconographic Exchange in Medieval China (University of Hawaii, 2008)


Sen, Tansen. Buddhism, Diplomacy and Trade: The Realignment of Sino-Indian Relations, 600-1400. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 2003.


Sharf, Robert. Coming to Terms with Chinese Buddhism (University of Hawaii Press, 2002)


Swanson, Paul. Foundations of T’ien T’ai Philosophy: the flowering of the two truths theory of Chinese Buddhism (Asian Humanities Press, 1989)


Teiser, Stephen. The Ghost Festival in Medieval China (Princeton, 1988)


Tuttle, Gray. Tibetan Buddhists in the Making of Modern China (Columbia, 2005)


van Oort, H.A., The Iconography of Chinese Buddhism in Traditional China (Brill, 1986)


Welter, Albert. Monks, Rulers and Literati: The Political Ascendancy of Chan Buddhism (Oxford, 2006)


Yampolsky, Philip, translator and editor. The Platform Sutra of the Sixth Patriarch (Columbia University Press, 1969)


Zurcher, Erik. The Buddhist Conquest of China: The Spread and Adaptation of Buddhism in Early Medieval China, 2 Volumes (Brill, 1959)




Buswell, Robert E. Jr. Tracing Back the Radiance: Chinul’s Way of Korean Zen (University of Hawaii, 1991)


Buswell, Robert E. Jr, edited. Currents and Countercurrents : Korean Influences on the East Asian Buddhist Traditions (University of Hawaii, 2006)


Hogarth, Hyun-key Kim. Syncretism of Buddhism a Syncretism of Buddhism and Shamanism in Korea (Jimoondang. 2002)


Lancaster, Lewis and C.S. Yu edited. Introduction of Buddhism to Korea: New Cultural Patterns, (Asian Humanities Press, 1989)


Lancaster, Lewis and C.S. Yu edited. Assimilation of Buddhism in Korea: Religious Maturity and Innovation in the Silla (Asian Humanities Press, 1991)


Lancaster, Lewis with Kikun Suh, and C.S. Yu edited. Buddhism in Koryo: A Royal Religion (University of California, 1996)


Lancaster, Lewis and C.S. Yu edited. Buddhism in the Early Choson: Suppression and Transformation (University of California, 1996)


Muller, Charles. The Sutra of Perfect Enlightenment: Korean Buddhism's Guide to Meditation (SUNY Press, 1999)


Park, Jin Y. Makers of Modern Korean Buddhism (SUNY, 2010)


Park, Sung-bae. Buddhist Faith and Sudden Enlightenment (SUNY Press, 1983)


Pihl, Marshall R. "Koryŏ Sŏn Buddhism and Korean Literature." Korean Studies. vol. 19, pp. 62-82




Abé, Ryūichi. The Weaving of Mantra: Kūkai and the Construction of Esoteric Buddhist Discourse (Columbia University Press, 1999)


Adolphson, Mikael. The Gates of Power: Monks, Courtiers, and Warriors in Pre-Modern Japan (University of Hawaii Press, 2000)


Arntzen, Sonja. Ikkyū and the Crazy Cloud Anthology (University of Tokyo Press, 1986)


Bodiford, William. Sōtō Zen in Medieval Japan (University of Hawaii, 2008)


Colcutt, Martin. Five Mountains: The Rinzai Zen Monastic Institution in Medieval Japan (Harvard, 1981)


Como, Michael. Shōtoku: Ethnicity, Ritual, and Violence in the Japanese Buddhist Tradition (Oxford University Press, 2008)


Dialogues in a Dream (Muchū Mondō), translated and annotated by Thomas Yūhō Kirchner with Fukazawa Yukio. (Tenryū-ji Institute for Philosophy and Religion Press, 2010)


Faure, Bernard. The Red Thread: Buddhist Approaches to Sexuality (Princeton University Press, 1998)


Heine, Steven and Dale Wright, edited. Zen Ritual: Studies of Zen Buddhist Theory in Practice (Oxford, 2007)


Heine, Steven and Dale Wright, edited. The Kōan: Texts and Contexts in Zen Buddhism (Oxford, 2000)


Hershock, Peter D.. Public Zen, Personal Zen: A Buddhist Introduction (Rowman and Littlefield, 2014)


Kasulis, Thomas. Zen Action/Zen Person (University of Hawaii Press, 1981)


Ketelaar, James. Of Heretics and Martyrs in Meiji Japan: Buddhism and its Persecution (Princeton, 1990)


LaFleur, William. The Karma of Words: Buddhism and the Literary Arts in Medieval Japan (University of California Press, 1983)


LaFleur, William and James Sanford, edited. Flowing Traces: Buddhism in the Literary and Visual Arts of Japan (Princeton, 1992)


Marra, Michel. The Aesthetics of Discontent: Politics and Reclusion in Medieval Japanese Literature (University of Hawaii Press, 1991)


Nelson, John K.. Experimental Buddhism: Innovation and Activism in Contemporary Japan (University of Hawaii, 2013)


Okamura, Shohaku. Realizing Genjokoan: The Key to Dogen’s Shobogenzo (Wisdom, 2010)


Rambelli. Fabio. Buddhist Materiality: A Cultural History of Objects in Japanese Buddhism (Stanford, 2010)


Ramirez-Christensen, Esperanza. Emptiness and Temporality: Buddhism and Medieval Japanese Poetics (Stanford University Press, 2008)


Shields, James Mark. Critical Buddhism: Engaging with Modern Japanese Buddhist Thought (Ashgate, 2011)


Stone, Jacqueline Ilyse. Original Enlightenment and the Transformation of Medieval Japanese Buddhism. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1999.


Victoria. Brian Daizen. Zen at War (Rowman and Littlefield, 2006)


Williams, Duncan. The Other Side of Zen: A Social History of SōtōZen in Tokugawa Japan (Princeton, 2006)


Southeast Asia


Blackburn, Anne and Jeffrey Samuels, edited. Approaching the Dhamma : Buddhist Texts and Practices in South and Southeast Asia (BPS Pariyatti Editions, 2003)


Collins, Steven. Nirvana and Other Buddhist Felicities (Cambridge, 1998)


Gifford, Julie. Buddhist Practice and Visual Culture: The Visual Rhetoric of Borobudur (Routledge, 2011)


Gombrich, Richard F. Theravāda Buddhism: A Social History from Ancient Benares to Modern Colombo (Routledge, 2006)


Gomez, Luis and Hiram Woodward Jr., edited. Borobudur: History and Significance of a Buddhist Monument (Asian Humanities Press, 1981)


Harris, Ian edited. Buddhism, Power and Political Order (Routledge, 2007)


Heim, Maria. The Forerunner of All Things: Buddhaghosa on Mind, Intention, and Agency (Oxford, 2013)


Holt, John Clifford et.al., edited. Constituting Communities: Theravada Buddhism and the Religious Cultures of South and Southeast Asia (SUNY Press, 2003)


McDaniel, Justin. The Lovelorn Ghost and the Magical Monk: Practicing Buddhism in Modern Thailand (Columbia, 2011)


Scott, Rachelle. Nirvana for Sale? : Buddhism, Wealth, and the Dhammakāya Temple in Contemporary Thailand (SUNY Press, 2009)


Sivaraksa, Sulak. Conflict, Culture, Change: Engaged Buddhism in a Globalizing World (Wisdom, 2005)


Skilling, Peter, edited. How Theravada is Theravada: Exploring Buddhist Identities (Silkworm Books, 2012)


Spiro, Melford E. Buddhism and Society: A Great Gradition and its Burmese Vicissitudes (University of California Press, 1982)


Swearer, Donald. The Buddhist World of Southeast Asia (SUNY Press, 2010)


Tambiah, Stanley. World Conquerer and World Renouncer: A Study of Buddhism and Polity in Thailand against a Historical Background (Cambridge, 1976)


Taylor, J. L.. Buddhism and Postmodern Imaginings in Thailand: The Religiosity of Urban Space (Ashgate, 2008)


Tiyavanich, Kamala. Forest Recollections: Wandering Monks in Twentieth-Century Thailand (University of Hawaii Press, 1997)


Tilakaratne, Asanga. Theravada Buddhism: The View of the Elders (University of Hawaii Press, 2012)




Blondeau, Anne-Marie and Katia Buffetrille, edited. Authenticating Tibet: Answers to China’s 100 Questions. (University of California Press, 2008)


Davidson, Ronald, M.,Tibetan Renaissance: Tantric Buddhism in the Rebirth of Tibetan Culture (Columbia, 2005)


Goldstein, Melvyn. The Snow Lion and the Dragon (University of California Press, 1997)


Kapstein, Matthew. The Tibetan Assimilation of Buddhism: Conversion, Contestation, and Memory (Oxford 2002)


Klein, Anne and Tenzin Wangyal. Unbounded Wholeness : Dzogchen, Bon, and the Logic of the Nonconceptual (Oxford University Press, 2006)


Lopez, Donald Jr. Religions of Tibet in Practice, (Princeton: 1997)


Lopez, Donald S. Jr., Prisoners of Shangri-La: Tibetan Buddhism and the West (Chicago: 1999)


Makransky, John. Buddhahood Embodied : Sources of Controversy in India and Tibet (SUNY Press, 1997)


Powers, John. Introduction to Tibetan Buddhism (Snow Lion Press, 2007)


Samuel, Geoffrey. Civilized Shamans: Buddhism in Tibetan Societies (Smithsonian, 1993)


Shakya, Tsering. The Dragon in the Land of Snows: A History of Modern Tibet since 1947 (Penguin Compass, 1999)


Thurman, Robert. Essential Tibetan Buddhism (HarperCollins, 1990)


Tuttle, Gray and Kurtis R. Schaeffer, edited. The Tibetan History Reader (Columbia, 2013)

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