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Buddhist Philosophy Distinguished Lecture Series

This 2006-07 series brought six distinguished scholars to campus to meet with the Five College Buddhist Studies Seminar and to give a public lecture dealing with some topic of current interest in Buddhist philosophy.

Thursday, September 28

Joseph Walser gave a public lecture entitled "To Publish or Perish: Nagarjuna in Context." Walser is an associate professor of Religion at Tufts University and the author of the widely-discussed, recently-published book, Nagarjuna in Context, which tries to show how the lines of argument developed in Nagarjuna's philosophical writings can be used to situate this elusive figure in a specific historical time and place.

Thursday, October 19

Richard Hayes gave a public lecture on "The Case of the Indecisive Bodhisattva: Using Santideva as a Guide to Practical Ethical Reasoning." Hayes recently left McGill University, where he had long been a professor in the Department of Religion, to join the Department of Philosophy at the University of New Mexico. A scholar of wide-ranging interests, Hayes has made especially important contributions to Buddhist epistemology.

Thursday, December 7

Stephen Jenkins gave a public lecture on "Killing with Compassion in the Indian Buddhist Tantric Literature." Jenkins is an associate professor in the Department of Religious Studies at California State University at Humbolt. He is currently completing a book on Buddhist ethics.

Thursday, February 22

Matthew Kapstein gave a public lecture on "Stoics and Bodhisattvas: 'Spiritual Exercise' as a Comparative Category." Kapstein is Numata Professor of Buddhist Studies in the Divinity School at the University of Chicago and Director of Tibetan Studies at the École Practique des Hautes Études in Paris. He is one of the world's foremost experts on the history of Tibetan Buddhist Philosophy. His recent publications include The Tibetans (2006), The Presence of Light (2004), Reason's Traces (2001), and The Tibetan Assimilation of Buddhism (2000).

Thursday, March 29

Paul Harrison gave a public lecture "Contextualizing Nagarjuna: With Special Reference to the Sutrasamuccaya." Harrison is a Professor of Buddhist Studies in the Department of Religious Studies at Stanford University and co-editor of the series Buddhist Manuscripts in the Schoyen Collection. He has translated and established critical editions of several early Mahayana texts and is one of the world's leading authorities on the development of Mahayana Buddhism.

Thursday, April 19

Tom Tillemans gave a public lecture on "How to Talk About Ineffable Things: Dignaga and Dharmakirti on Apoha." Tillemans is the director of the Buddhist Studies Center at the University of Lausanne. He has authored numerous articles and five books on Buddhist logic and epistemology, including Scripture, Logic, Language: Essays on Dharmakirti and his Tibetan Successors and Dharmakirti's Pramanavarttika.