Phase 2 Cluster Activities

Due to COVID-19, field visits for 2020 and 2021 were cancelled.  Learn about our 2021 ONLINE Summer Training Program HERE. Please sign up for our newsletter to say informed.

Applications are now being accepted for Summer 2023 Field Visits. Please see descriptions below.

To apply, complete the APPLICATION FORM by Tuesday, February 7, 2023.

Participation by early career scholars is especially encouraged.

As the project moves forward from the pandemic and its impact on research activities, we believe it is important to ensure equity and access to FROGBEAR programs, and provide research and training opportunities to more students who have not previously participated. For this reason, and due to limited space, those who have not previously participated in prior FROGBEAR activities will be given priority for Summer 2023 field visits in our final year of organized programs.

Questions should be directed to frogbear.project@ubc.ca

 

2023 Activities

 

Cluster 1.3 Market and Merit

Cluster leaders: Susan Andrews, Youn-mi Kim

Site(s): Wongaksa Temple Museum, the Leeum Samsung Museum, the National Museum of Korea, Songgwangsa, Haeinsa

Dates: May 16–20, 2023

Language(s): English or / and Korean. Interpretation will be provided. A knowledge of Classical Chinese will enhance individuals’ experiences, however is not required.

Summary:

This fieldwork experience and colloquium builds on the “Working with Objects and Manuscripts” virtual Frogbear workshop convened (virtually) with the Wongaksa Temple Museum 圓覺寺聖寶博物館 in 2021. Focusing on the careful study of objects housed in their collection––including manuscripts, Buddhist paintings, statues, and dhāraṇī prints–– together with materials preserved in the Leeum, Samsung Museum of Art, the National Korean Museum, as well hubs of practice such as Songgwangsa and Haeinsa, the 2023 initiative invites participants to consider through diverse visual, material, and textual sources the relationships between donors, manufacturers, and artisans–especially women actors—and the religious landscape. In addition to gaining familiarity with the materials themselves, participants will learn how to date manuscripts (based on the quality of paper, for instance), how to date artworks (based on their style, for example), and how to locate dedicatory inscriptions in these sources. Complementing onsite experiences, a 1-day colloquium bringing together experts from the Frogbear project and beyond to explore the roles of women donors in the making of East Asian religious life.

 Expected Costs for participants (other than airfare): $1000 CAD ($600 lodging, $250 meals, $150 transport)

 

Cluster 1.5 Extended Textual Communities

Cluster Leader: Jiang Wu

Site(s): Kyoto, Japan

Dates: July 23 – 30, 2023

Language(s): Fluent English and some Chinese or Japanese

Summary:

The Ōbaku tradition is one of the three main Zen schools in Japan, together with Sōtō and Rinzai. It is a relatively late arrival from China, having been established in the mid-17th century, roughly four centuries after the larger Sōtō and Rinzai schools. The school is noted for numerous innovations in Buddhist culture, both in the visual arts and in the production of a new Buddhist canon, namely the Ōbaku or Tetsugen Canon, which can trace its origins back to the Hangzhou area in 17th-century China. This canon, based on the main section of the Jiaxing Canon 嘉興藏 which is the reprint of the Northern Ming Canon 明北藏), consists of 2,094 titles and 6,950 volumes. It was re-carved on wooden blocks and printed in Japan in 1673. Throughout the early modern period until the creation of the now commonly used Taishō canon 大正藏 of the 1930s, it dominated the Japanese Buddhist world and remains one of only three examples of the East Asian Buddhist canon within which the entirety of the wooden blocks has been preserved. The primary goal of this week-long program, which will be conducted at Manpukuji (Uji, Japan), is to examine how the Buddhist textual tradition was extended outside China through the reproduction of the Buddhist canon by focusing on the religious importance of printing technologies. The results of this trip will complement the current scholarship on the Ōbaku tradition (Helen Barani, Obaku Zen: The Emergence of a Third Sect of Zen in Tokugawa Japan, 2000; Jiang Wu, Leaving for the Rising Sun: Chinese Zen Master Yinyuan and the Authenticity Crisis in Early Modern East Asia, 2015) and on the Chinese Buddhist canon (Jiang Wu, et. al. Spreading Buddha’s Words: The Transformation of the Chinese Buddhist Canon in East Asia, 2015).

 Expected Costs for participants (other than airfare): $1750 CAD ($1100 lodging, $350 meals, $175 transport, $125 entrance fees)

 

 

Cluster 3.1 Multicultural Dunhuang: Manuscripts and Paintings

Cluster Leaders: Imre Galambos, Michelle C. Wang

Site:  London, UK. British Library and British Museum

Dates: June 26-30, 2023

Language(s): English required, and reading knowledge of classical Chinese. other classical languages (Tibetan, Khotanese, etc.) also welcome. Modern Chinese helpful but not required.

Summary:

The tenth century in Dunhuang marked a period of great political, social, and religious transformation as the local rulers, known as the “Return to Allegiance Army” (Guiyijun), who ruled from 848-1036, declared their independence from the Tibetans and nominally “returned” Dunhuang to Chinese rule. The Guiyijun increasingly sought political alliances with the neighboring Uyghurs and Khotanese, developed a sophisticated painting academy that carried out large-scale projects at the Mogao caves, and distinguished themselves as patrons of cave construction and renovation, and of religious manuscripts and portable paintings.

This cluster, co-led by a scholar of manuscripts and an art historian, seeks to develop interdisciplinary research methods by which the contents of the Dunhuang “Library Cave” – manuscripts and paintings – are reconciled with one another, paying close attention to methodologies that are applicable to both by focusing especially on the material features of these primary sources. We also aim to shed light on the material traces of Buddhism and transcultural contacts between the local population of Dunhuang and neighboring kingdoms and states. In summer 2023, our fieldwork will be based at the British Museum and British Library. Circumstances permitting, we will examine Dunhuang portable paintings and manuscripts from the Stein Collection, and participate in lectures delivered by experts at both host institutions and guest scholars. Participants will be trained in the study of Dunhuang portable paintings and manuscripts and learn about ongoing projects.

 Expected Costs for participants (other than airfare): $1175 CAD ($900 lodging, $75 meals, $200 transport)

 

Cluster 3.4 Typologies of Text-Image Relations

Cluster leaders: Christoph Anderl

Site(s): Chinese temples in Bangkok, Thailand

Dates:  May 24 – June 2, 2023

Language(s): English; knowledge of Chinese is desirable; language support for Thai will be provided.

Summary:

Chinese temples in Thailand (and many other locations in South and Southeast Asia) give witness to the complex history of the spread of Chinese Buddhism, and the co-existence of various forms of Buddhism in that area. In the context of Thailand – although characterized by a dominance of Theravada Buddhism – there is a large number of Chinese temples especially in the Bangkok area, most of them clustering in and around Chinatown. Despite their Chinese heritage, many agents associated with the temples (monastics and laypeople) have fully integrated in Thai society and do not speak Chinese anymore (this seems to be a feature quite different from Chinese religious institutions in other countries where even after several generations the Chinese linguistic heritage is preserved). The temples still play a significant role for the religious and cultural life, as well as the identity, of communities with Chinese ancestors. Naturally, most of the temples cluster in and around Chinatown of Bangkok. This contemporary function of these religious institutions will be one focus of the fieldtrip, and we aim to document as many temples as possible with photographic (including 3D survey images) and video materials.

In addition, we will focus on a specific aspect of material culture extant in many of these temples, concretely, inscriptional / epigraphic materials. Chinese immigration to Southeastern locations started several hundred years ago, and the earliest inscriptions date back to the 17th century. In our work, we will focus on inscriptions predating the 19th century. Here, we build on the monumental work of Wolfgang Franke who in 1998 published a survey of epigraphic materials in Thailand. In our fieldwork, we aim to both trace Franke’s documented materials in the contemporary temples, document them with high-resolution images, in addition to complementing the records of Franke.

This will also enable us to gain an impression of the current condition of these materials, and their significance for religious practices and for the heritage / touristic activities of the individual temples. We will not only document materials in Chinese but also in Thai (or other languages such as Pali).

Expected Costs for participants (other than airfare): $1755 CAD ($880 lodging, $275 meals, $300 transport, $300 entrance fees)

 

 

 

 

2022 Activities

1.4 Enriched Reading Practices

Cluster Leaders: Bryan Lowe and Lori Meeks

Partners: Kyoto University, Nara National Research Institute for Cultural Properties, Kyoto Prefecture Research Center for Archaeological Properties

Site: ONLINE, through Zoom

Dates: June 25-29, 2022

Languages: Japanese and English required; knowledge of Chinese characters

Summary:

This cluster considers how people engaged with reading and writing in premodern Japan. While much attention to writing in Buddhist Studies focuses on elite authors, such as scholarly monks and literary luminaries, our cluster attends to writing by figures on the margins, including women and lay practitioners outside of the court.

This year’s activities will focus on excavated materials with writing: wooden slips (mokkan), inscribed pottery (bokusho doki), and roof tiles with writing (moji kawara). Some of these objects have been studied by historians and scholars of literature such as Marjorie Burge, Joshua Frydman, David Lurie, and Joan Piggott, but they have received almost no attention from Anglophone scholars of Buddhism.

The aim of this online workshop is to familiarize participants with new textual sources that offer windows into the lives of non-elites and to provide participants with training necessary to use these excavated sources. Each day will focus on a different set of materials: wooden slips (mokkan), inscribed pottery (bokusho doki), and roof tiles with writing (moji kawara). The first day will begin with a keynote lecture outlining the broader significance of archaeology for the study of Japanese Buddhism followed by a workshop on mokkan. The second day will turn to inscribed pottery and will include a hands-on collaborative mapping project. The third day will feature a lecture on inscribed roof tiles and a debriefing to discuss the mapping project as well as future research directions.

Schedule

Date/time U.S. Pacific
日程(米・西海岸)
Date/time U.S. Eastern
日程(米・東海岸)
Date/Time Japan
日程(日本)
Session 1 6/25, 5:00-6:30 PM 6/25, 8:00-9:30 PM 6月26日午前9時から10時30分
Session 2 6/26, 4:00-5:30 PM 6/26, 7:00-8:30 PM 6月27日午前8時から9時30分
Session 3 6/27, 9:00-11:00 AM 6/27, 12:00-2:00 PM n/a
Session 4 6/27, 4:00-5:30 PM 6/27, 7:00-8:30 PM 6月28日午前8時から9時30分
Session 5 6/28, 9:00-11:00 AM 6/28, 12:00-2:00 PM n/a
Session 6 6/28, 4:00-5:30 PM 6/28, 7:00-8:30 PM 6月29日午前8時から9時30分
Session 7 6/29, 9:00-11:00 AM 6/29, 12:00-2:00 PM n/a

Session topics:

  1. Kondō Yasushi 近藤康司先生: Ōnodera and Inscribed Rooftiels 大野寺と文字瓦
  2. Yoshikawa Shinji 吉川真司先生: Keynote Address: Ancient Japanese Buddhism as Seen from Excavated Materials with Writing 基調講演:出土文字史料からみた日本古代仏教
  3. Bryan Lowe ブライアン・ロウ: Introduction to excavated sources with writing, databases, and group project 出土文字資料、データベース、グループプロジェクトの紹介
  4. Hishida Testsuo 菱田哲郎先生 :Inscribed Pottery and Kamoidera 墨書土器と神雄寺
  5. Participants: Group project グループプロジェクト
  6. Baba Hajime 馬場基先生: Mokkan and Buddhist History 木簡と仏教史
  7. Participants: Discussion ディスカッション

 

2.3 Continuous Revelations

Cluster Leaders: Vincent Goossaert and Barend ter Haar

Site: ONLINE, through Zoom

Dates: May 26, 27, 31, June 2 (5am-7am PDT / 2pm-4pm Western Europe / 8pm-10pm China / 9pm-11pm Japan)

Languages: The instruction will be entirely in English; ability to read Classical Chinese is required

Summary:

This online workshop combines the FROGBEAR cluster on continuous revelations and the CRTA project of an open-access online catalog of Chinese religious texts (https://crta.info/wiki/Main_Page). It aims to introduce the participants to (1) the history of the genre of baojuan, (2) to the range of baojuan literature, and (3) to collaborative tools to locate and study this literature.

The workshop consists in 4 sessions of 2 hours each, in May-June 2022, 5am-7am PST / 2pm-4pm Western Europe / 8pm-10pm China / 9pm-11pm Japan. Participants are expected to follow all four sessions.

1/ Thursday May 26: history of baojuan; overview of the historiography (key references will be sent to participants before the workshop); contemporary performances.

2/ Friday May 27: locating and reading baojuan texts. Introduction to the library and online resources, and the most important collections; materiality approaches (baojuan and other vernacular genres). Guided reading.

3/ Tuesday May 31: the CRTA database: rationale, purposes, discussion of selected CRTA entries on baojuan texts, showing how this is a tool for understanding the dynamics of the circulation of religious texts; explanation on how to use downloaded CRTA data.

4/ Thursday June 2: hand-on training in editing CRTA entries. Each participant will have selected a text and created an entry in the meantime; we will read them and discuss both technical aspects and contents.

Instructors: Katherine Alexander (U. of Colorado Boulder), Rostislav Berezkin (Fudan U.), Philip Clart (Leipzig U.), Lu Zhenzhen (Bates College), Ouyang Nan (Ghent U.), Gregory Scott (U. of Manchester)

3.1 Multicultural Dunhuang: Manuscripts and Paintings

FULL. No longer accepting applications.

Cluster Leaders: Imre Galambos and Michelle C. Wang

Site: British Museum and British Library, London, UK

Dates: Aug 1-5, 2022 (arrival July 31, departure Aug 6)

Languages: English required, and reading knowledge of modern and classical Chinese

Summary:

The tenth century in Dunhuang marked a period of great political, social, and religious transformation as the local rulers, known as the “Return to Allegiance Army” (Guiyijun), who ruled from 848–1036, declared their independence from the Tibetans and nominally “returned” Dunhuang to Chinese rule. The Guiyijun increasingly sought political alliances with the neighboring Uyghurs and Khotanese, developed a sophisticated painting academy that carried out large-scale projects at the Mogao caves, and distinguished themselves as patrons of cave construction and renovation, and of religious manuscripts and portable paintings.

Co-organized by Dr. Michelle C. Wang and Dr. Imre Galambos, the summer 2022 fieldwork trip to London aims to bring together an interdisciplinary cohort of art historians and scholars of manuscripts. We seek to develop research methods by which the contents of the Dunhuang “Library Cave” are reconciled with the mural paintings of the Mogao Caves, paying close attention to methodologies that are applicable to both by focusing especially on the material features of these primary sources. We also aim to shed light on the material traces of Buddhism and transcultural contacts between the local population of Dunhuang and neighboring kingdoms and states, particularly during the period of Guiyijun rule in Dunhuang. In summer 2022, our fieldwork will be based at the British Museum and British Library. Circumstances permitting, we will examine Dunhuang portable paintings and manuscripts from the Stein Collection, and participate in lectures delivered by experts at both host institutions and guest scholars. Participants will be trained in the study of Dunhuang portable paintings and manuscripts and learn about ongoing projects.

Expected cost per participant (not including airfare): $1100 CAD (lodging and local transportation for 6 days). Meals will be provided.

 

Cluster 3.4 Typologies of Text-Image Relations

Cluster Leaders: Christoph Anderl

Site: ONLINE, via Zoom

Dates:

May 23-25 (3am-9am PDT | 6am-12pm EDT | 12-18 pm CET | 6pm-9pm CST)
May 26 Introduction (time TBD depending on location of participants)
May 27-31 (in at least 3 time-zone groups, TBD depending on location of participants)

Languages: Support for Chinese / (occasional) translations will be provided; basic Modern Chinese is desirable but not absolutely necessary; familiarity with East Asian scripts

Summary:

As compared to the “central” Dazu area, which is close to Chongqing, many of the Anyue sites are relatively distant and not so easily accessible. However, as the Dazu and the Anyue sites are directly related in terms of the temporal and geographical spread of specific motifs, narratives, genres, artistic styles, etc., the Anyue area can provide materials that are indispensable for a reconstruction of the Buddhist textual and visual programs of the entire Sichuan region and will be of great importance for the study of the development of Buddhist image and text production in the form of rock carvings and rock caves in China. Thus, by focusing on several important sites in the Anyue district, this (virtual) cluster visit aims at narrowing the scholarly gap both in documenting the important Buddhist sites and in studying text-image relations. The cluster activities were originally organized in close collaboration with local institutions and experts, most importantly the Institute for the Study of Chinese Popular Culture (中国俗文化研究所) at Sichuan University.

This year cluster’s activities are divided into two main parts:

(1) A three-day online seminar on theoretical/methodological issues in the field of text-image relations, including lecture presentations, case studies, student presentations and roundtable discussions. https://frogbear.org/image-text-reality-in-buddhism-interrelation-internegation/

(2) A virtual field work focusing on several important sites in the Anyue district. With the background of the theoretical part and introduction to key sites in the framework of the seminar, the virtual field studies involve studies directly related to specific sites in Anyue. The work will be based on high-resolution images taken during previous field trips and other materials. The researchers will study these materials, extract images, write descriptions and prepare them for input in the FROGBEAR project database. Fieldwork research will be primarily based on the photographic materials, and will also involve specific research questions related to the particular features of the individual sites. Researchers will work in groups (divided according to time zones), similar to those involved in “real” fieldwork, and also applying “division of labor” approach.

Please see full details here – https://frogbear.org/cluster-3-4-typologies-of-text-image-relations-2022/

 

Online workshops are partially supported by the Glorisun Global Network for Buddhist Studies.