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Religions 2018, 9(5), 147; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9050147

Women and Ultramodern Buddhism in Australia

School of Humanities and Social Sciences, Deakin University, 221 Burwood Hwy, Burwood, VIC 3125, Australia
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Received: 5 April 2018 / Revised: 24 April 2018 / Accepted: 24 April 2018 / Published: 2 May 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Women in Buddhism)
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Abstract

Buddhists started arriving in Australia in large numbers during the mid-1800s, and the first Buddhist societies and centres began to be formed in the mid-late 1900s. This paper examines the role of women in bringing Buddhism to and establishing it in Australia. Women have featured prominently in a small amount of scholarship, including Paul Croucher’s (1989) Buddhism in Australia: 1848–1988 and Cristina Rocha and Michelle Barker’s (eds. 2011) edited volume on Buddhism in Australia: Traditions in Change. This paper draws on these sources, but primarily on more recent digital oral histories of prominent Buddhist women and men in Australia, recorded as part of the first stage of the Buddhist Life Stories of Australia project in 2014–2015. These first-hand accounts bring the early female pioneers of Buddhism in Australia to life and provide a rich re-telling of this history with emphasis on women’s contributions to it. We also argue that these women’s experiences can best be understood through a framework of ‘ultramodern Buddhism,’ built upon theories of modern and post-modern Buddhism, as many of these women were trailblazers bridging dualisms of tradition and modernity, Asia and the West, and adhering to both feminist and Buddhist principles. View Full-Text
Keywords: Buddhism; Australia; women; feminism; modern Buddhism; ultramodernity Buddhism; Australia; women; feminism; modern Buddhism; ultramodernity
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Halafoff, A.; Garrod, J.; Gobey, L. Women and Ultramodern Buddhism in Australia. Religions 2018, 9, 147.

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