BOOK REVIEW: The culture of Issei Buddhism



Edited By Duncan Ryuken Williams and Tomoe Moriya (Champaign, Ill.: University of Illinois Press, 2010, 216 pp., $25, paperback)

For academics and others interested in religious, Asian American, and/or Japanese American studies, editors Duncan Ryuken Williams and Tomoe Moriya have assembled a wide-ranging collection of articles on Buddhism in the Americas. The eclectic collection of articles are divided into four major headings: “Nation and Identity,” “Education and Law,” “Race and Print Culture” and “Patriotism and War.”

The editors frame Buddhism in the Americas as a continuation of the eastward movement of Buddhism from India, China, Japan, and across the Pacific Ocean to the Americas rather than merely viewing Buddhism through the lenses of an imported adaptive religion.

This approach leads the researcher to explore dynamic relationships between “local,” “translocal,” “nation,” “empires,” and the export of various sects of Buddhism to the Americas. Studies in this collection range from Zen Buddhism in Brazil, Bukkyokai in British Columbia, language school controversy in Hawai‘i to religious profiling during World War II of Tenrikyo ministers as well as other pseudo Shinto sects.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *