EVENT> ISHB hosts Dr. Funie Hsu “Re-orienting the Conversation on Buddhism in the West" (8 Feb)

Jens Reinke's picture

Re-orienting the Conversation on Buddhism in the West

We are excited to announce the Institute’s new bi-monthly conversation series with title “Re-orienting the Conversation on Buddhism in the West.” Discussions on Buddhism in the West often focus on the experiences of lay Buddhists who belong to the ethnic mainstream of countries such as the USA and the countries of Europe. While these studies provide valuable inside in one sub-demographic of the Western Buddhist landscape, a demographic that is sometimes called white convert Buddhists, they frequently overlook the majority of Buddhists in Western societies: Buddhists who possess cultural and family linkages to Asia.

ISHB’s new bi-monthly Zoom conversation series aims to address the issue by opening up the conversation on who counts as a Western Buddhist. It will include lay Buddhists as well as Monastics, and academics as well as practitioners. ISHB is excited to announce two conversations that are scheduled for the spring term of 2022: Dr. Funie Hsu from San Jose State University will be a guest on February 8 at 6 PM PST. Next we have the honour of welcoming Venerable Miao Guang, Deputy Chancellor of the Fo Guang Shan Institute of Humanistic Buddhism in April. Please find details for registration for the conversation series below.


Funie Hsu (she/they) is associate professor of American studies at San José State University. She is a former University of California President’s Postdoctoral Fellow and is a transdisciplinary scholar whose research areas include American Buddhism, race, Asian American studies, education, mindfulness, language, gender, human animal studies, and the political status of Taiwan. Her research is largely informed by her upbringing in a working class, multilingual Taiwanese American Buddhist family, and her prior experience as an elementary school teacher in Los Angeles Unified. Her writing has appeared in Journal of Global Buddhism, American Quarterly, Educational Studies, CATESOL, L2 Journal, Buddhadharma, Lion’s Roar, and Huffpost.com.

We will have a conversation with Dr. Hsu about her upbringing as an Asian American Buddhist in Southern California, her famous 2016 Lion’s Roar Article on the erasure of Asian American Buddhism, and her most recent engagement as a co-organizer of May We Gather, a national Buddhist memorial for Asian American ancestors. Please register for this exciting event.

February 8, 6 PM PST on Zoom