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Book Talk: “Lost Graves and Recycled Mourning Sheds: How the Late Koryŏ Elite Took the Drama Out of Afterlife”

November 7 @ 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

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Center for Korean Research Event


Please join us for a book talk with:

Juhn Ahn, Associate Professor of Buddhist and Korean Studies

University of Michigan


Two issues central to the transition from the Koryo to the Choson dynasty in fourteenth-century Korea were social differences in ruling elites and the decline of Buddhism, which had been the state religion. In this revisionist history, Juhn Ahn challenges the long-accepted Confucian critique that Buddhism had become so powerful and corrupt that the state had to suppress it. When newly rising elites (many with strong ties to the Mongols) used lavish donations to Buddhist institutions to enhance their status, older elites defended their own adherence to this time-honored system by arguing that their donations were linked to virtue. This emphasis on virtue and the consequent separation of religion from wealth facilitated the Confucianization of Korea and the relegation of Buddhism to the margins of public authority during the Choson dynasty.


Read an interview conducted by Ross Yelsey with Dr. Ahn here


Juhn Ahn is the author of Buddhas and Ancestors: Religion and Wealth in Fourteenth-Century Korea (University of Washington Press, 2018)


This is a Lectures and Panels event.


No registration required.



Thursday, November 7, 2019

4:00 PM-5:30 PM



Kent Hall Lounge


For press inquiries, please contact Ariana King ak4364@columbia.edu.


Cosponsored by: The Academy of Korean Studies, Seoul Korea; the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures


November 7
4:00 pm - 5:30 pm
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