Southeast Asia Seminar Series presents a lecture on Buddhism in Cambodia:
ANNE HANSEN (Dept. Languages & Cultures of Asia Center For Southeast Asian
Studies, University of Wisconsin-Madison)
PAINTING ETHICS: DEATH, LOVE AND MORAL VISION IN KHMER MAHAPARINIBBANA
Friday, November 8th, 2013
4:00 PM – 6:00 PM
LA 200, Larkin Building
15 Devonshire Place
Register Online at: http://munkschool.utoronto.ca/ai/event/14395/
This paper examines the visual ethics of death and love expressed in a contemporary Cambodian Buddhist temple painting of the mahaparinibbana (or “death without remains”) of the Buddha at Wat Unnalom, an influential center of Buddhist education and religious renovation in Phnom Penh. Visual ethics, as the term is used in this paper, refers to moral reflection on how to be with oneself and others in and through visual media. Drawing on recent work by anthropologist Kenneth George, the paper explores how and why Buddhist paintings like this one do ethical work: how they communicate values, shape moral agents, delineate ideal relationships, and further, how they suggest and reveal modes of seeing the world as it really is, which might be described as moral vision.
Anne Hansen is Professor at the Department of Languages and Cultures of Asia Center For Southeast Asian Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her research interests include the history and development of Theravada Buddhism in South and Southeast Asia; Buddhist ethics; Pali and Khmer Buddhist literature; narrative and ethics; Buddhism and modernity; modern religious movements in Southeast Asia; and Theravadin visual culture in Southeast Asia.
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