East Asian Languages and Cultures, Chinese Buddhism, 2001
Published: Thursday, May 25, 2006
Assistant Professor of Buddhism and East Asian Religions at McMaster University. Professor Benn was trained primarily as a scholar of medieval Chinese religions, although he also has interests in the religions of Japan and Korea. He has been concerned with three major issues: bodily practice; the ways in which people create and transmit new religious practices and doctrines; and the religious dimensions of commodity culture. In particular his research has focused on self-immolation, Chinese Buddhist apocrypha, and the history of tea. Recently, he has also been exploring the significance of relics in Buddhism and Daoism, and considering religious aspects of military culture in medieval China. His first book, on self-immolation in Chinese Buddhism, is entitled Burning for the Buddha: Self-Immolation in Chinese Buddhism (Hawaii, forthcoming). Professor Benn is currently working on a second book on the religious and cultural aspects of tea in China.
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