This past Friday, I presented a paper at the Stanford-Berkeley Graduate Student Conference on Pre-modern Chinese Humanities, titled “The Gāthā in Medieval China, or, Are You Shī?” This will form the basis of one chapter of my dissertation on Buddhist poet-monks of ninth- and tenth-century China. The basic aim of the paper is to trace the development of the term gāthā 偈頌 over the course of eight centuries (140-940 CE) and its relationship to the concept of “poetry” 詩.
It was a delightful conference, with some of the strongest grad student research I’ve seen in a while. The schedule of the day’s events can be found here. Anyone interested in my paper is welcome to contact me.