Tibetan Language and Literature Courses

A continuation of Tibetan 110A, this course provides an intensive introduction to a range of literary Tibetan literature. Assuming knowledge of basic literary Tibetan grammar, the course focuses on selected readings from Buddhist texts in Tibetan. Prerequisites: Tibetan 110A; or consent of instructor.
This course seeks to develop a critical understanding of contemporary Tibet, characterized as it is by modernity, invasion, Maoism, liberalization, exile, and diaspora. It explores the cultural dynamism of the Tibetans over the last 100 years as expressed in literature, film, music, modern art, and political protest. The core topics include intra-Tibetan arguments regarding the preservation and "modernization" of traditional cultural forms, the development of new aesthetic creations and values, the constraints and opportunities on cultural life under colonialism and in the diaspora, and the religious nationalism of the recent political protests. Prerequisites: None.

A continuation of the Fall 2016 seminar that focused on the beginnings of tantric ritual in India with a particular focus on the ritual system of the Saravatathāgata-tattvasaṃgraha, this seminar moves forward by about one century to consider the rise of the Mahāyoga tantras and the *Guhyagarbha-tantra in particular.  The readings will center on the De kho na nyid kyi snang ba dam pa rgyan gi bsgom thabs, an extensive sādhana based on the *Guhyagarbha that is found only among the Tibetan Dunhuang manuscripts. Using this as our primary source, we will supplement it with secondary readings in western scholarship on the same period of tantric ritual development.  Attention will also be paid to how Tibetans assimilated these systems in the eighth to tenth centuries.  Prerequisites: Graduate standing and consent of instructor.