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“Ocean of Milk, Ocean of Blood: a Mongolian Monk in the Ruins of Qing Empire”

October 10 @ 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm

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Weatherhead East Asian Institute Event

Please join us for a lecture with:

Matthew King, Assistant Professor, Department of Religious Studies

University of California, Riverside

Moderated by:

Gray Tuttle, Leila Hadley Luce Professor of Modern Tibetan Studies, Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures

Columbia University


After the fall of the Qing and Tsarist empires, amid nationalist and socialist upheaval, Siberian, Mongolian, and Tibetan Buddhist monks in the frontiers of the Soviet Union and Republican China faced a chaotic and increasingly uncertain world. Drawing on ten years of research into otherwise lost Buddhist monastic writing produced during Asia’s first socialist revolution, Matthew King reveals an unexplored landscape of countermodern Buddhisms that briefly flourished in Asia’s heartland before a wave of state violence arrived in 1937. Who were made invisible in the invention of national peoples, territories, histories, and religions that directed such violence? How does contemporary scholarship on modernization in Asia and on transnational Asian religions reproduce such erasures? Attending to hybrid, countermodern movements, King shows, displaces contact with European tradition as the primary trope for understanding twentieth-century Asian religiosity.

Matthew King is Associate Professor of Transnational Buddhism and Director of the Asian Studies Program at the University of California-Riverside.


This is a Weatherhead East Asian Institute Lectures and Panels event.


No registration required.



October 10, 2019

12:00 PM – 1:30 PM


Kent 403

1140 Amsterdam Ave.

New York, NY 10027


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


October 10
12:00 pm - 1:30 pm
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