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CJS Noon Lecture - The Five-Element Pagoda (gorinto) and Changing Concepts of the Dead in Medieval Japan: A Visual Exploration

Thursday, October 11, 2012
4:00 AM
Room 1636, School of Social Work Bldg.

In a recent written work, Professor Glassman provided an illustrated reflection on the gorin no tô, or “five-element pagoda.” This structural object came into being in Japan around 1100 and became a central symbol in medieval Shingon Buddhism. The five-element pagoda is an ideal vehicle for the examination of cultural flows in East Asia. In this presentation, Professor Glassman will enlist the aid of visual resources and focus particularly on the place of the gorin no tô style gravestone in the iconography of a new “Children’s limbo” introduced at the turn of the 17th century.

About the Speaker:
Hank Glassman is Associate Professor of East Asian Studies at Haverford College in Pennsylvania. His teaching and scholarly work centers on Japanese history, death and the afterlife, Buddhism, and gender. He has authored works such as The Face of Jizô: Image and Cult in Medieval Japanese Buddhism (Hawaii 2012).