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Department ofArt and Art History


Delving into the Imaginal Worlds of Buddhism

Heather Clydesdale (Assistant Professor, East Asian Art History) participated in “The Imagination and Imaginal Worlds in the Mirror of Buddhism,” a summer institute sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities and organized by the Mangalam Research Center in Berkeley. For two weeks, she joined other scholars (many in Religious Studies, but a few in Anthropology, English, Performance, and Film Studies) in learning about the imagination in different schools of Buddhism. It was eye-opening to hear scholars from various disciplines share their expertise on the imaginal world and Buddhism and stimulating to engage in discussions with other participants. The learning from the institute will inform Heather’s teaching of China on the Silk Roads, Fabricating Nature, and From Emaki to Manga. She is also integrating new ideas based on the institute into an article she is writing on animal imagery in medieval Chinese tombs and early Buddhist cave temples, as well as research on Buddhist concepts in contemporary architecture and design. 
Caption: NEH Summer Institute at the Mangalam Research Center, Berkeley