Coming to Terms

Robert DeCaroli

in Haunting the Buddha

Published in print October 2004 | ISBN: 9780195168389
Published online January 2005 | e-ISBN: 9780199835133 | DOI:
Coming to Terms

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This introductory chapter presents an overview of the ways in which the iconographic evidence, provided by the sculptural imagery found on early Buddhist monasteries, contradicts the traditional histories of early Buddhism that rely almost exclusively on textual sources. These discrepancies are largely due to the work of European authors writing during the colonial period and, as such, functioned to support the colonial agenda. However, long after the end of Imperialism these ideas still remain entrenched in our understanding of Buddhism's early history. As a first step, this chapter undertakes a thorough analysis of the diverse terminology associated with various categories of spirit‐deities in order to work out an appropriate vocabulary for use in the rest of the book.

Keywords: Terminology; Imperialism; Colonial; Buddhism

Chapter.  10070 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Buddhism

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