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Researching transnational activist lives: Irish Buddhists and the British Empire
Cox, Laurence
This research note explores some methodological challenges arising from biographical research on early Irish Buddhists in the colonial period. It briefly situates the role of such figures in relation to Asian anti-colonial movements and highlights the research challenges posed by multiple languages and countries, the variable preservation and digitisation of different kinds of sources, and the polarisation provoked by such figures. Practical solutions include international collaboration, digitisation, and a combination of quasi-philological precision and quasi-ethnographic understanding. The note highlights three relevant findings: a relativisation of the importance of organisations, a greater appreciation of the meanings of failure, and a historical materialist approach to possibility.
Keyword(s): biography; social movements; religious movements; organising; internationalism; Buddhist Studies; colonialism; pan-Asian; U Dhammaloka
Publication Date:
Type: Journal article
Peer-Reviewed: Yes
Institution: Maynooth University
Citation(s): Cox, Laurence (2016) Researching transnational activist lives: Irish Buddhists and the British Empire. Interface : a Journal for and about Social Movements, 8 (2). pp. 171-183. ISSN 2009-2431
Publisher(s): National University of Ireland Maynooth
File Format(s): other
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First Indexed: 2020-04-02 06:07:45 Last Updated: 2020-04-02 06:07:45