Renunciation and Empowerment of Buddhist Nuns in Myanmar-Burma

Building A Community of Female Faithful


Myanmar-Burma has one of the largest concentrations of Buddhist nuns and monks in the world today. In Renunciation and Empowerment of Buddhist Nuns in Myanmar-Burma, Kawanami traces the nun's scholarly lineage in modern Myanmar history and examines their contemporary religious position in Myanmar’s social and political contexts. Although their religious status may appear ambiguous from a textual viewpoint, it is argued that their large presence is a clear indication as to the important functions Buddhist nuns perform in the monastic community. Sagaing Hill where the main research was conducted, occupies an important educational centre for Myanmar nuns in consolidating their scholarly lineage and spreading the network of dhamma teachers. The book examines transactions that take place in their everyday lives and reveals the essence of their religious lives that make Buddhist nuns an essential bridge between sangha and society.

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Hiroko Kawanami, Ph.D. (1991), LSE, University of London, is lecturer in Buddhist studies at Lancaster University, U.K. She is co-editor of Religions in the Modern World (Routledge, 2002; 2009) and the special issue on Myanmar-Burmese religions in Asian Ethnology (2009)
All interested in gender and Buddhism, the religious position of Buddhist nuns, history of monastic education, sangha and society in Myanmar-Burma, Buddhist studies and anthropology.
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