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Chapter Summary

The role played by aspects of Pure Land Buddhism, and especially Shin Buddhism, in modern Japanese culture has been the main focus of this book. From the book it is observed at the outset that orientalist and occidentalist interpretations have indeed been responsible for excluding some religious traditions while privileging others, and that the key concept of hegemony has been a fundamental tool for understanding such processes. One of the examples which have been considered, is the link between the samurai and Zen (Buddhism) as proposed by Suzuki and others. The marginalization of the Pure Land tradition in the creation of Japanese culture to be proposed to the 'West' is also seen. Moreover, "the strongly political nature of the Shin tradition", Amstutz has theorized, discouraged Shinshū's appeal to the 'West'. The religious idea of tariki is considered in the book.

Keywords: cultural hegemony; Jōdo Shinshū; Japanese culture; pure land Buddhism; Shin Buddhism; tariki; Zen Buddhism



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