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Lecture: Modern Alienation and its Antidotes: Strategies from Early 20th Chinese Buddhist Intellectuals
July 2022 @ 10:00 - 12:00
Modern Alienation and its Antidotes: Strategies from Early 20th Chinese Buddhist Intellectuals
Assistant Professor of Religion, Department of Religion, George Washington University
July 01, 2022, 10:00 AM (GMT +2) in Amsterdam, Berlin, Rome, Stockholm, Vienna
On Campus: KWZ 2.739 (University of Göttingen, Heinrich-Düker-Weg 14, 37073 Göttingen)
On Zoom: For registration, please use this zoom link.
Intellectuals, such as Nietzsche, Weber, and Adorno, described modernity as a period of alienation resulting from the collapse of pre-modern social and political structures and the disintegration of shared values. Alienation leaves the individual disconnected from organic relational networks from which humans derive a sense of meaning. But is alienation an inevitable side effect of modernity? In this talk, I will explore the examples of some leading Chinese Buddhist intellectuals in the modern period and argue that far from being alienated, Chinese Buddhists seized the significant changes of the period as an opportunity to transform Buddhism and adapt it to the new era. While they were aware of China’s predicament after the collapse of the imperial world order and the spread of colonialism, still, they approached it in an engaged and constructive spirit. In the talk, I will reflect on what prevents alienation from occurring and why not all modernisms were born alike.
Asia-Africa- Institute, Department for Chinese Language and Culture, University of Hamburg
Department of East Asian Studies, University of Göttingen
Academic Confucius Institute, University of Göttingen
Image: sung ming whang: Early saturday morning in color, Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0), https://flic.kr/p/6E5PXd