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Warren Mills Hutcheson Memorial Lecture in Buddhist Studies Presents

Monday, April 2, 2018
Buddhism and Symbolic Violence
Olin, Room 203
5:30 pm
Professor Bernard Faure
Columbia University
The recent tragedy of the Muslim Rohingyas in Myanmar has arguably attracted more attention from the media than the long civil war between Buddhists and Hindus in Sri Lanka, and it has led many people to question the traditional image of Buddhist nonviolence. Usually Buddhist violence has been discussed from a sociopolitical or doctrinal viewpoint. Here I would like to address its presence in visual representations and in the Buddhist imagination. If compassion is well expressed by serene images of meditating buddhas, the angry gods of Tantric Buddhism partake, conversely, in a puzzling symbolic violence. I would like to examine the role of such representations in the historical development of Buddhism. 

Cosponsored by the Religion Program, Asian Studies, and Art History.

For more information, call 845-758-6822, or e-mail

Time: 5:30 pm

Location: Olin, Room 203