Buddhism in four settler-colonial societies, and its global cultural flows
A talk by Dr. Sally McAra
Thursday 27 September • 4:10pm
HU 320, Trinity Newman Library, Victoria University of Wellington
How can we make scholarly generalizations about the diverse expressions of Buddhism in historical and contemporary society, and still represent that diversity accurately?
This seminar addresses this question, drawing on her experience of co-authoring a chapter outlining Buddhism in Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the USA, for a book intended to provide an introductory overview to Buddhism in different geographical regions.
She shows how problems encountered in representing the diversity of Buddhism in contemporary society were mitigated when we borrowed from literature about global cultures and framed our material in terms of ‘contact zones’ and global cultural flows.
Dr. Sally McAra is the author of several publications on Buddhism in Australia and New Zealand, including Land of Beautiful Vision: Making a Buddhist Sacred Place in New Zealand (University of Hawai’i Press, 2007).
Her doctorate (completed in 2009 in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Auckland) investigated a major Tibetan Buddhist stupa project under construction in rural Victoria, Australia. Her research interests centre around Buddhism outside of Asia.
With her home in Auckland, Sally is currently an adjunct research fellow in the School of Art History, Classics & Religion, at Victoria University, Wellington. She is also a student of Zen and secretary of the New Zealand Buddhist Council.
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