Yale to Host Workshop on Early Chinese Buddhist Translations Led by Prof. Jan Nattier
The Department of Religious Studies at Yale University has announced that a special 3-day workshop on early Chinese Buddhist translations, led by Professor Jan Nattier, will be held from 13–15 October 2017 at Yale. The program is supported by the Research Center for Buddhist Texts and Arts at Peking University.
Professor Nattier is one of world’s foremost experts on the rarely-studied corpus of early Chinese translations of Buddhist texts, and this workshop is a unique opportunity to read such materials with her. The workshop is open and free of charge to all interested graduate students and faculty. Lunches and dinners will be provided for all participants.
Funding is available to cover travel and accommodation expenses for a limited number of graduate students coming from anywhere in North America. To apply for funding, you must be enrolled in, or set to begin in fall 2017, a relevant MA or PhD program. Please send a brief cover letter explaining your reasons for wishing to attend and your background and qualifications. Your adviser at your home institution must also send a (brief) email indicating your status and confirming that you have their support to attend. When applying for funding, please indicate what city you will be traveling from.
The final deadline for applying for funding is 1 August 2017, but funding will be allocated on a rolling basis (first-come first-serve). Funding is limited, so you are encouraged to apply as soon as you can.
Anyone not applying for funding must still register to confirm their participation, no later than 1 September 2017.
The workshop will specifically address two unusual Chinese versions of the story of the Parinirvana of the Buddha’s foster mother, Mahāprajāpatī: 大愛道般泥洹經 (T144) and 佛母般泥洹經 (T145). Participants will consider, first of all, how to evaluate the translator attributions given in the received tradition. Having established the probable dates and attributions of these texts, workshop attendees will begin to read through them, discussing what to do with Buddhist names and terms that are not registered in existing dictionaries. The two Chinese versions will be compared with other versions of the story extant in Chinese, Tibetan, and Pāli, in an attempt to place the texts within their historical context.
Reading materials for the workshop will be entirely in Chinese, and a basic competence in classical/literary Chinese will be assumed of all participants. Those with knowledge of other Buddhist scriptural languages are welcome to use those to consult parallels to the texts in question, but such collateral work will not be expected or required.
Please direct all inquiries and send funding/registration applications to: firstname.lastname@example.org