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Mahayana Phoenix: Japan's Buddhists at the 1893 World's Parliament of Religions
Author Harding, John Sheldon
PublisherUniversity of Pennsylvania
Publisher Url
LocationPhiladelphia, PA, US [費城, 賓夕法尼亞州, 美國]
Content type博碩士論文=Thesis and Dissertation
InstitutionUniversity of Pennsylvania
AdvisorLaFleur, William R.
Publication year2003
KeywordEighteen 93 World's Parliament of Religions; Japan; Buddhists; Mahayana; Illinois
Abstractremarkable group of Japanese Buddhists traveled to Chicago's Columbian Exposition to participate in the 1893 World's Parliament of Religions. These delegates combined religious aspirations with nationalist ambitions. Their portrayal of Buddhism mirrored modern reforms in Meiji Japan and the historical context of cultural competition and religious exhibition on display at the 1893 World's Fair. Japan's primary contribution to the Exposition, the Ho-o-den temple architecture, demonstrated the symbiosis between Buddhism and Japanese national interests in Chicago. Religious and aesthetic dimensions of culture balanced Japan's reputation for rapid modernization. Moreover, the symbolism of the Ho-o, or phoenix, was apt for Buddhist renewal succeeding devastating Meiji persecution, Mahayana revitalization following withering attacks of Western critics, and Chicago's resurrection from the ashes of the Great Fire. I examine Japanese journals, letters, and reports as well as contemporaneous Western accounts of the 1893 Exposition and Parliament in order to assess the Japanese delegates' motivations, strategies and representations of Buddhism.
Created date2005.09.23
Modified date2016.03.02

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