yle:normal'>The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and The Washington Post - during a six-year span from January 1, 1996 to December 31, 2001 were analyzed for the presence of fantasy themes. A Chinese newspaper People's Daily and three U.S. movies Kundun, Seven Years in Tibet, and Red Corner were examined for corresponding themes. Fantasy types emerge from the media portrayals and form the rhetorical social reality of the Dalai Lama accordingly. The study contributes to the body of literature on Symbolic Convergence Theory, media influence, and individual image building.

 

5. Dalton, Jacob Paul. "The uses of the dgongs pa 'dus pa'i mdo in the development of the Rnying-ma school of Tibetan Buddhism (China)," UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN, 2002, Ph.D.

 

Abstract

 

The Sütra of the Gathered Intentions of All the Buddhas (Tib. Sangs rgyas thams cad dgongs pa 'dus pa'i mdo) is a canonical work recognized by both western scholars and today's Rnying-ma-pa as the fundamental tantra of the anuyoga class of teachings. Apart from this simple fact, however, it remains almost completely unknown. This dissertation traces the life of the Sütra from its ninth century origin through the present day. Each chapter examines, in chronological order, how the Sütra was used in a series of arenas. What emerges is an alternative history of the Rnying-ma school, one in which the Sütra plays a vital role. Chapter One argues that the Sütra, through a variety of interwoven strategies, provided Tibetans with a comprehensive system for organizing the flood of Buddhist teachings arriving from India. Chapter Two follows the Sütra into the twelfth century, when it was used in the codification of a new "Spoken Teachings" (bka' ma) curriculum for Kah-thog monastery in eastern Tibet. Chapter Three looks at how, upon entering the canon, the Sütra became less an active teaching system than an icon, worshipped only through its elaborate empowerment ritual. Chapter Four focuses on how, in the politically tumultuous years of the seventeenth century, a new lineage was constructed at Rdo-rje Brag monastery to replace the two already existing. Chapter Five looks at the Sütra 's role in the project carried out at Smin-grol-gling monastery at the turn of the eighteenth century to reformulate the Rnying-ma school through large-scale public rituals. Chapter Six reviews several attempts over the nineteenth and twentieth centuries to revive or preserve the practice and study of the Sütra. Chapter Seven considers how a text that has been so influential in the formation of the Rnying-ma school could have become invisible to the modern observer.

6. Hillis, Gregory Alexander. "The rhetoric of naturalness: A critical study of the gNas Lugs mdzod," UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA, 2002, Ph.D.

 

Abstract

 

Religious discourse, like other forms of discourse, is never fully separated from its social, political, as historical contexts. It may be that each of these forms of discourse is mutually constitutive of the others and represents an intersection of, or dialogue between, different, and often competing, discourses and vocabularies. Religious rhetoric is ubiquitous throughout almost all other forms of cultural discourse, and it should be clear to even the casual observer that religious ideas and beliefs are often used in pursuit of other, not necessarily related, personal, social and political agendas. The Treasury of Abiding Reality (gNas Lugs mdzod) represents the intersection of several religious, philosophical, historical, biographical, political, and even legal discourses. It also may well represent the culmination of its author Longchenpa's mature thought, as it was likely his last major work. The Treasury of Abiding Reality is thus informed by a lifetime of experience, conflict, and reflection. The present thesis argues that in it, these various currents crystallize for a moment before moving on. Using rhetoric as its principal interpretive rubric, the thesis addresses various questions not often raised in a strictly philosophical textual interpretation. In addition to being a presentation of a philosophical position, the distinctive "rhetoric of naturalness" articulated by Longchenpa and other followers of the Nyingma School of Tibetan Buddhism is a response to contemporaneous social, political and cultural trends. Moreover, elements found in The Treasury of Abiding Reality derive from specific details of Longchenpa's biography. Using historical and literary critical methods, the thesis interprets the bold, often paradoxical, language used in The Treasury of Abiding Reality as an instantiation of the broader social, political and religious conflicts in Tibet at that time.

 

7. Li, Ruohong. "A Tibetan aristocratic family in eighteenth-century Tibet: A study of Qing-Tibetan contact (China)," HARVARD UNIVERSITY, 2002, Ph.D.

 

Abstract

 

This dissertation is a case study on the Manchu Qing-Tibetan contacts during the eighteenth century by investigating the precarious political career of one of the most eminent Tibetan aristocratic families in central Tibet, the Rdo ring (or Dga' bzhi) family. Drawing upon multi-lingual first-hand sources, mainly Rdo ring Bstan 'dzin dpal 'byor's autobiography, this research intends to shed new light on the connections between Tibetan lay aristocrats and Qing officials on the official as well as personal level. Utilizing the current research trend of micro-historical approach, the Rdo ring family's political career in four generations will be put into the context of eighteen-century Qing and Tibetan politics and the change of Qing court policy in ruling Tibet. The rise and fall of the Rdo ring family throughout the eighteenth century reflects the change of Qing Tibetan policy. The Rdo ring family emerged as eminent Tibetan aristocrats as a result of the Qing's early pro-lay aristocracy policy following the Dzungar incursion to Tibet and Tibetan civil war. The ascent of the family political power was greatly attributed to the strong tie that Pho lha nas had with the Qing court. In the late eighteenth century, the downturn of the Rdo ring family's political power signaled serious and fundamental problems in Qing Tibetan policy. Lay aristocracy failed the court; the Dalai Lama's dominant power both in the political and religious realms cannot ensure a balanced power structure, and regency was not reliable in face of chaotic situation. The Qing court was left with no other choices but to turn to its own ambans. This research concludes that the ultimate failure of Qing Tibetan policy resulted from the temporary and opportunistic features of the policies themselves, the inefficiency of the amban system and the decline of the Qing empire as a whole that started from the late eighteenth century. The Qing suzerainty over Tibet was largely wishful thinking. Deeply troubled by the overall imperial administrative laxity and socioeconomic disturbances in all aspects, Tibet was left out of the major picture of the Qing empire in the post-Qian long era. The decline of the Rdo ring family epitomizes the Qing-Tibetan contacts and the change of the Qing Tibetan policy in the eighteenth century.

 

8. Schiaffini-Vedani, Patricia. "Tashi Dawa: Magical realism and contested identity in modern Tibet (China)," UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA, 2002, Ph.D.

 

Abstract

 

This dissertation focuses on the writer Tashi Dawa, who in the 1980s became the most famous Tibetan writer in China, and one of the most controversial figures associated with modern Tibet. The controversy surrounding Tashi Dawa revolves around his half-Tibetan half-Han ethnic background, his writings in Chinese language and his use of a magical realistic style. The very few studies about his works tend to interpret them in opposite terms: some affirm his stories portray Tibetan traditions in order to oppose the Chinese domination of Tibet, while others accuse them of misrepresenting Tibetan culture to satisfy the Chinese taste for the exotic. This dissertation addresses relevant topics neglected by previous scholarship, such as an in-depth study of Tashi Dawa's early realistic works, and what his progression from realism to magical realism tells us about his ethnic transition from being regarded as a Han to being regarded as a Tibetan. Contrary to the generalized assumption that Tashi Dawa's magical realism is based on the author's imitation of Gabriel Garcia Marquez, this dissertation explains the origins of his writing style in terms of his culturally hybrid identity. Through the analysis of Tashi Dawa's magical realistic works and a comparison of his life and ideas with those of other magical realistic writers, this study defends that Tashi Dawa arrived to magical realism as a result of a common process experienced by other culturally hybrid writers all over the world. Tashi Dawa, like these writers, rediscovered his native land after being educated under the culture of the colonizer and, he also wanted to find literary alternatives to the dominant (socialist) realism. Finally, this dissertation also explores how the controversy surrounding Tashi Dawa relates to the debate about Tibet's right to independence, and how this political and ethnic conflict affects the literature produced in Tibet and the ways in which scholars approach it.

 

9. Tuttle, Gray Warren. "Faith and nation: Tibetan Buddhists in the making of modern China (1902--1958)," HARVARD UNIVERSITY, 2002, Ph.D.

 

Abstract

 

In the present work, I analyze one aspect of how the dynastic Qing empire became the modern Chinese nation-state through the effort to include Tibet as part of the new China. In so doing, I offer insights into the impact of the global forces of nationalism, race, and religion on social organization in East Asia. The territory of East Asia's largest empire, the Qing dynasty, has largely been preserved in the nation-state of the People's Republic of China. In the case of Tibet, the rhetoric of nationalism and racial unity proved largely powerless to effect this transition. Instead, religion served as the pan-Asian link between the social organization of the dynastic empire and the nation state. I examine Tibet's inclusion as part of how contemporary China defines itself in order to demonstrate the crucial role that Buddhists played in China's transition from a dynastic empire to a nation-state. I also explore the nexus of religion and nation and argue that religion cannot merely be associated with "tradition" that is ultimately displaced by "modernity" in the form of the nation. My findings demonstrate that within the context of the modern nation-state religious traditions are readily adopted and adapted by both state actors and members of religious institutions to advance their respective interests. The central thesis of my dissertation is that Buddhism was the key factor in maintaining a tenuous link between China and Tibet during the Republican period (1912-1949), a link that the Communists preserved when exerting control over Tibet by force in the 1950s. For this reason, I argue that Buddhist religious culture played an essential role in the formation of the modern Chinese nation-state. The majority of this dissertation is devoted to understanding the efforts of Buddhists and politicians to integrate Buddhist culture and modern Chinese politics. I have combined the methodologies of historical analysis of specific cases of religious, educational, and political interaction with a comparison across time of the changing or continuing nature of these relations. These methodologies have allowed me to demonstrate the effect of nationalist and racial ideology and new conceptions of what it meant to be Buddhist on twentieth century Sino-Tibetan interaction.