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Featured Faculty Profile: Ann Blackburn

August 8, 2016

A Professor in the Asian Studies Department and Religious Studies Program, Anne Blackburn's recent research reveals the deep trans-regional connections among histories of Buddhist place-making and the establishment of Buddhist-oriented policies in the western and southwestern regions of Sri Lanka, north-central Tai lands, and Mon-Burmese territory.

During 1200-1500 a new regime of Indian Ocean trade and shifting political formations in the region spurred the circulation of Buddhist intellectuals and ritualists across the ocean.  As the Sri Lankan Buddhist world entered a phase of unprecedented instability and creativity, Southeast Asian Buddhists increasingly sought access to Sri Lankan Buddhist texts and institutions. Blackburn's research connects Buddhist history across the boundaries of South and Southeast Asia and reconceptualizes this history via comparison to Islam-oriented state formation in the region.

 

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