Writing as Enlightenment: Buddhist American Literature into the Twenty-first Century
John Whalen-Bridge, Gary Storhoff
SUNY Press, Aug 1, 2011 - Religion - 207 pages
Explores the prevalence of Buddhist ideas in American literature since the 1970s.
This timely book explores how Buddhist-inflected thought has enriched contemporary American literature. Continuing the work begun in The Emergence of Buddhist American Literature, editors John Whalen-Bridge and Gary Storhoff and the volume’s contributors turn to the most recent developments, revealing how mid-1970s through early twenty-first-century literature has employed Buddhist texts, principles, and genres. Just as Buddhism underwent indigenization when it moved from India to Tibet, to China, and to Japan, it is now undergoing that process in the United States. While some will find literary creativity in this process, others lament a loss of authenticity. The book begins with a look at the American reception of Zen and at the approaches to Dharma developed by African Americans. The work of consciously Buddhist and Buddhist-influenced writers such as Don DeLillo, Gary Snyder, and Jackson Mac Low is analyzed, and a final section of the volume contains interviews and discussions with contemporary Buddhist writers. These include an interview with Gary Snyder; a discussion with Maxine Hong Kingston and Charles Johnson; and discussions of competing American and Asian values at the Beat- and Buddhist-inspired writing program at Naropa University with poets Joanne Kyger, Reed Bye, Keith Abbott, Andrew Schelling, and Elizabeth Robinson.
John Whalen-Bridge is Associate Professor of English at the National University of Singapore. His books include Norman Mailer’s Later Fictions: Ancient Evenings through Castle in the Forest. Gary Storhoff is Associate Professor of English at the University of Connecticut, Stamford. He is the author of Understanding Charles Johnson. Together they are coeditors of The Emergence of Buddhist American Literature and American Buddhism as a Way of Life, both also published by SUNY Press.
What people are saying - Write a review
We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.
Other editions - View all
aesthetic African Americans American Buddhism Asian assassination black Americans black Buddhists Buddha Buddhist practice Buddhist teachings century characters Charles Johnson Christianity civil rights contemporary context critics Daoism describes Dharma discussion Don DeLillo emphasizes Engaged Buddhism enlightenment essay ethical experience fiction Gary Snyder Gary Storhoff gathas Ginsberg heavenly human interview Jackson Mac Low Japan Japanese culture Joanne Kyger John Whalen-Bridge Kennedy’s Kerouac King’s Kobun Libra literary Low’s Mac Low mantra Marina Maxine Hong Kingston means mind Naropa University nature novel Okakura Kakuzo one’s Oswald Oxherding Tale Parliament of Religions philosophical poem poet poetics poetry political postmodern practitioners Prebish present reader reading religious sense Shaku Soen Shambhala social Soka Gakkai spiritual suffering Suzuki talk teacher there’s things thought Tibetan tion traditions Trungpa understanding University Press West Western World’s Parliament writing wuwei York Zen Buddhism Zen Center Zen’s