IAAS Lecture by Professor Lan Wu


Wednesday, February 5, 2020, 1:15pm to 2:30pm


CGIS South Building, Room S250, 1730 Cambridge Street, Cambridge MA 02138

Monastic Wealth in Qing China’s Buddhist Inner Asia

Lan Wu, Assistant Professor of History, Mount Holyoke College

Abstract: How did monasteries amass wealth in Qing China’s Buddhist Inner Asia? How did the Qing imperial enterprise affect Buddhist praxis on the ground? In this lecture, I will discuss a wide range of practices that brought wealth into Tibetan Buddhist monasteries in the eighteenth century. At the center of my study is the making of Beijing’s Yonghegong, which exemplified the evolving practices that contributed to the proliferation of wealthy Buddhist communities across Inner Asia. Through a study of land transfer deeds, administrative paper trail, and letters, I explore how the Qing imperial state crafted a new relationship between the laity and Tibetan Buddhist monasteries, and in turn shifted its own imperial undertakings in that process.