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12th Garfield Forum: "Buddhism and Violence"

Wednesday May 4th 2022, 4:30 - 6:30PM
Event Sponsor
The Ho Center for Buddhist Studies
Department of Religious Studies
Stanford Humanities Center
Levinthal Hall, Stanford Humanities Center

Directions: Stanford Humanities Center


The 12th Garfield Forum will focus on three dimensions of the problem of Buddhism and violence: a philosophical consideration of the relation between belief statements and their behavioral observance; the recent rise of Buddhist monastic militancy in Sri Lanka and Myanmar; and the repercussions of the recent coup and its violent aftermath in Myanmar for inter-communal relations and identities.

Featured speakers:

Daniel Arnold, Associate Professor at University of Chicago Divinity School. 

Alicia Turner, Associate Professor at York University of Toronto. 

John Clifford Holt,  Visiting Professor at University of Chicago.


Alicia Turner

Alicia Turner is Associate Professor of Humanities and Religious Studies at York University in Toronto. She is interested in the intersections of religion, colonialism, secularism and nationalism in Southeast Asia, with a particular focus on Buddhism in Burma (Myanmar) over the past 150 years. She is the author of Saving Buddhism: The Impermanence of Religion in Colonial Burma (Hawai'i 2014) and co-author of The Irish Buddhist (OUP 2020) with Laurence Cox and Brian Bocking. She is currently finishing a book on the genealogy of religious difference and conflict in Burma Myanmar.



Dan Arnold

Daniel Arnold is Associate Professor of Philosophy of Religions at the University of Chicago Divinity School. His first book – Buddhists, Brahmins, and Belief: Epistemology in South Asian Philosophy of Religions (Columbia University Press, 2005) – won an American Academy of Religion Book Award. His second, Brains, Buddhas, and Believing: The Problem of Intentionality in Classical Buddhist and Cognitive-Scientific Philosophy of Mind (Columbia, 2012), was awarded the Numata Book Prize in Buddhism. His forthcoming anthology of original translations of Indian Madhyamaka texts is to be published by Columbia University Press in the series “Historical Sourcebooks in Classical Indian Thought.”



John Holt

John Clifford Holt is Visiting Professor of Theravada Buddhism at the University of Chicago.  He has published Discipline: the Canonical Buddhism of the Vinayapitaka (Motilal Banarsidass, 1981); Buddha in the Crown: Avalokitesvara in the Buddhist Traditions of Sri Lanka (Oxford, 1991), for which he received the American Academy Book Award for Excellence; The Religious World of Kirti Sri:  Buddhist Art and Politics in Late Medieval Sri Lanka (Oxford, 1996); The Buddhist Visnu (Columbia, 2004); Spirits of the Place: Buddhism and Lao Religious Culture (Hawai’i, 2009); Theravada Traditions:  Buddhist Ritual Cultures in Southeast Asia and Sri Lanka (Hawai’i, 2017); and Myanmar’s Buddhist-Muslim Crisis:  Rohingya, Arakanese, and Burmese Narratives of Siege and Fear (Hawai’i, 2019).