November 2011

Introductory remarks by Alexander von Rospatt

Introductory remarks by Alexander von Rospatt

Todd Lewis in the audience

Todd Lewis in the audience

Rev. Brian Nagata, Bukkyo Dendo Kyokai

Rev. Brian Nagata, Bukkyō Dendō Kyōkai

2011 Toshihide Numata Book Award

Friday, November 4, 2011. During a ceremony at the Jodo Shinshu Center, the Center for Buddhist Studies at the University of California, Berkeley, and Bukkyō Dendō Kyōkai (Numata Foundation) presented the 2011 Toshihide Numata Book Award to College of the Holy Cross Professor Todd T. Lewis for his, and Subarna Man Tuladhar's, 2010 book Sugata Saurabha: An Epic Poem from Nepal on the Life of the Buddha by Chittadhar Hridaya (Oxford University Press).

This event included introductory remarks by Professor Alexander von Rospatt (UC Berkeley), the presentation of the award by Rev. Brian Nagata (Bukkyō Dendō Kyōkai) on behalf of Mr. Toshihide Numata, a keynote address by Todd Lewis, and a symposium on "Lives of the Buddha, chaired by Robert Sharf, with presentations by John Strong (Bates College), Gregory Schopen (UCLA), and Alexander von Rospatt.

Professor Lewis teaches at the College of the Holy Cross and is a Research Associate in the Department of Sanskrit and Indian Studies at Harvard University. Beginning with his scholarly training at Columbia University (where he earned his Ph.D. in Religion 1984), Professor Lewis' research and teaching has been interdisciplinary, linking anthropology, the history of religions, and Indology. His area of special expertise is Buddhist narratives and the role of merchants in Buddhist history. Professor Lewis is also one of the world's leading authorities on the religions of the mid-montane Himalayan region and the social history of Buddhism.

Subarna Man Tuladhar is Director of Studies at Nepal Administrative Staff College. His collaboration as a translator on Prof. Lewis scholarly research into Buddhism and culture of 'Uday,' one of the Newar merchant and craftsmen communities, began almost four decades ago and culminated into several works including Popular Buddhist texts from Nepal: Narratives and Rituals of Newar Buddhism (Suny Press, 2000).

The Toshihide Numata Book Award in Buddhism (or "Toshi" Award) is awarded on an annual basis to an outstanding book in the area of Buddhist studies. Professor Lewis' and Mr. Tuladhar's work was selected by members of an outside committee.

Click on photos to enlarge.


Todd Lewis and Alexander von Rospatt Prize presentation by Rev. Brian Nagata to Todd Lewis

Todd Lewis Todd Lewis and Robert Sharf

John Strong Gregory Schopen