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Women under the Bo Tree: Buddhist nuns in Sri Lanka - Cambridge Studies in Religious Traditions (Paperback)
  • Women under the Bo Tree: Buddhist nuns in Sri Lanka - Cambridge Studies in Religious Traditions (Paperback)
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Women under the Bo Tree: Buddhist nuns in Sri Lanka - Cambridge Studies in Religious Traditions (Paperback)

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£32.99
Paperback 308 Pages / Published: 14/08/2008
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Women under the Bo Tree examines the tradition of female world-renunciation in Buddhist Sri Lanka. The study is textual, historical and anthropological, and links ancient tradition with contemporary practice. Tessa Bartholomeusz utilizes data based on her field experiences in many contemporary cloisters of Sri Lanka, and on original archival research. She explores the history of the re-emergence of Buddhist female renouncers in the late nineteenth century after a hiatus of several hundred years; the reasons why women renounce; the variety of expressions of female world-renunciation; and, above all, attitudes about women and monasticism that have either prohibited women from renouncing or have encouraged them to do so. One of the most striking discoveries of the study is that the fortunes of Buddhist female renouncers is tied to the fortunes of Buddhism in Sri Lanka more generally, and to perceived notions of Sri Lanka as the caretaker of Buddhism.

Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9780521071680
Number of pages: 308
Weight: 450 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 18 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
"This book represents a significant and welcome departure from most studies of "women in Buddhism"....[It] is an excellent resource for scholars and students and is a `must read' for anyone working on topics concerning Buddhist nuns, Sri Lankan history or ethnography, or Buddhism today." Journal of Buddhist Ethics
"...a solid and important contribution to the study of Buddhism in Sri Lanka since 1890. As one of the first book-length studies of renunciant women in a modern Buddhist society, it sets a good example in its judicious empathy and in its thorough social and historical contextualizing of its subject." The Journal of Asian Studies
"Women under the Bo Tree is a fascinating account of the life of an unusual institution, the history of which sheds a great deal of light on the position of women in contemporary Theravada Buddhist cultures. By perusing the historical record and recovering the voices of nineteenth and twentieth-century lay nuns, their supporters, and their critics, and also by interviewing contemporary lay nuns, Bartholomeusz provides us with an insightful account of this self-declared monastic community." Journal of the American Academy of Religion

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