Colleges Professor to Study in the Far East – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

Colleges Professor to Study in the Far East

Chi-chiang Huang receives grant to do research in Taiwan and Japan

(July 29, 2004) Geneva, N.Y. — Hobart and William Smith Colleges Professor of Asian Languages and Cultures Chi-chiang Huang was recently awarded a grant from the Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation for International Scholarly Exchange (CCKF).

The grant, which is highly competitive, is awarded on the merit of a proposal submitted by a senior professor who wishes to take a sabbatical leave in order to do research and writing. Huang will travel to Taipei, Taiwan and Kyoto, Japan from August until December to work on a project titled “Pilgrims, Lay Buddhists and Buddhist Identity in the Jiang-Zhe Region during the Yuan Dynasty.”

The research project will entail the use of classical Chinese and Japanese sources on Buddhism, the reading of rarely used Buddhist books and documents, and the search for the undocumented stele inscriptions preserved in major libraries and temples, of which many played very important roles during the Kamakura and Muromachi periods of Japan.

“Receiving this grant will allow me to study my proposed topic in a way I would not otherwise have had the opportunity to do,” said Huang. “I'm honored to have received such a strong endorsement from the CCKF and eager to avail myself of this grant to work toward expanding the base of scholarship in my area of specialization.”

Huang began his tenure at Hobart and William Smith Colleges in 1987. Over the years, he has authored two books, published some thirty articles and book reviews, presented papers at more than two dozen conferences and workshops, and given public talks in the United States, Japan, and Taiwan. His published books, titled “Study in the History of Northern Song Buddhism,” and “Causality, Pure Land, and Rebirth in the Land of Utmost Bliss–Perspectives on the History of Chinese Buddhism,” deal with such issues as the relationship between Buddhist institutions and imperial rulership, Korean and Japanese monks in Song China, the debates about the Pure Land faith and many others.

Very active within the HWS community, Huang was instrumental in building the Chinese language and culture curriculum at the Colleges. He was awarded the Faculty Prize for Scholarship in 2000 and was responsible for putting in place the Asian language lab in the Colleges' new building, Stern Hall.

The Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation for International Scholarly Exchange is a nonprofit organization with headquarter in Taipei, Taiwan and a U.S. office in McLean, Virginia. It was established in 1989 in honor of the late President Chiang Ching-kuo. CCKF promotes the understanding of Chinese culture and society in western countries. The U.S. office administers applications submitted by scholars in the United States and awards approximately five to eight senior scholar grants annually. Huang is the second member of HWS faculty to receive this grant. Professor William Atwell received the same award in 1995. The Colleges have also received two grants from CCKF for institutional enhancement.

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