Interpreting Amida: History and Orientalism in the Study of Pure Land Buddhism (Suny Series in Buddhist Studies)

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9780791433096: Interpreting Amida: History and Orientalism in the Study of Pure Land Buddhism (Suny Series in Buddhist Studies)

Examines the history of Japanese Pure Land Buddhism and how orientalist assumptions have caused the West to ignore this important tradition.

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About the Author:

Galen Amstutz is Coordinator of the Edwin O. Reischauer Institute of Japanese Studies at Harvard University.

Review:

Amstutz clearly demonstrates how the sources of Western and Eastern misunderstanding of Pure Land Buddhism have been engendered, both consciously and unconsciously, by orientalist assumptions current in scholarly understanding of the history and practice of Pure Land Buddhism. Before academic studies in Pure Land Buddhism can advance much further, all of us in the field must confront the issues of orientalist assumptions and biases lurking in our scholarship. The author has pointed these out within their historical contexts in a powerful way, and perhaps this is the most important contribution this book has to offer. I know that after reading Amstutz s critique, I will be more careful and alert in my own work in Pure Land Buddhism in particular and Buddhist studies in general. Paul O. Ingram, Pacific Lutheran University
This book will not only illuminate the Western assumptions about Buddhism and Asian religions, but also offer a glimpse into the status of pre-modern religious institutions in the post-modern period. There have been quite a number of treatments of new Japanese religions in the modern period but few that discuss the classical institutions. Kenneth K. Tanaka, Institute of Buddhist Studies"

"Amstutz clearly demonstrates how the sources of Western and Eastern misunderstanding of Pure Land Buddhism have been engendered, both consciously and unconsciously, by orientalist assumptions current in scholarly understanding of the history and practice of Pure Land Buddhism. Before academic studies in Pure Land Buddhism can advance much further, all of us in the field must confront the issues of orientalist assumptions and biases lurking in our scholarship. The author has pointed these out within their historical contexts in a powerful way, and perhaps this is the most important contribution this book has to offer. I know that after reading Amstutz's critique, I will be more careful and alert in my own work in Pure Land Buddhism in particular and Buddhist studies in general." -- Paul O. Ingram, Pacific Lutheran University

"This book will not only illuminate the Western assumptions about Buddhism and Asian religions, but also offer a glimpse into the status of pre-modern religious institutions in the post-modern period. There have been quite a number of treatments of new Japanese religions in the modern period but few that discuss the classical institutions." -- Kenneth K. Tanaka, Institute of Buddhist Studies

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Galen Amstutz
Published by State University of New York Press (1997)
ISBN 10: 0791433099 ISBN 13: 9780791433096
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Book Description State University of New York Press, 1997. HRD. Book Condition: New. New Book. Shipped from UK in 4 to 14 days. Established seller since 2000. Bookseller Inventory # CW-9780791433096

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