Efficacious Underworld: The Evolution of Ten Kings Paintings in Medieval China and Korea

From the publisher’s website: The Ten Kings hanging scrolls at Tokyo’s Seikadō Bunko Art Museum are among the most resplendent renderings of the Buddhist purgatory extant, but their origin and significance have yet to be fully explored. Cheeyun Kwon unfurls this exquisite set of scrolls within the existing Ten Kings painting tradition while investigating textual, […]

Empire’s Twilight: Northeast Asia under the Mongols

From the publisher’s website; The rise of the Mongol empire transformed world history. Its collapse in the mid-fourteenth century had equally profound consequences. Four themes dominate this study of the late Mongol empire in Northeast Asia during this chaotic era: the need for a regional perspective encompassing all states and ethnic groups in the area; […]

New Perspectives on Early Korean Art: From Silla to Koryo

From the publisher’s website: This volume, consisting of five chapters and an introduction, includes discussion of a variety of artworks, ranging from gold adornments found in Silla tombs to Koryŏ Buddhist paintings scattered in modern museum and private collections, that provide insight into the religious practices, aesthetics, cross-cultural exchanges, and everyday life of the people […]

A Chinese Traveler in Medieval Korea: Xu Jing’s Illustrated Account of the Xuanhe Embassy to Koryŏ

From the publisher’s website: “The king and ministers, superior and inferior, move with ritual and refinement. When the king goes on an inspection tour, everyone has the correct ceremonial attributes and the divine flag [troops] gallop in front while armored soldiers block the road. The soldiers of the Six Divisions all hold their attributes. Although […]

Buddhism in Koryo: A Royal Religion

From the publisher’s website: In this volume, we catch glimpses of Buddhism in the Koryo period at its height. It was a time when the religion made significant contributions to the development of Korean culture. Art and literature flourished under the support of the central government. Monasteries of great beauty were constructed, and the monastic […]

Currents and Countercurrents: Korean Influences on the East Asian Buddhist Traditions

From the publisher’s website: Soon after the inception of Buddhism in the sixth or fifth century B.C.E., the Buddha ordered his small band of monks to wander forth for the welfare and weal of the many, a command that initiated one of the greatest missionary movements in world religious history. But this account of a […]

Power of the Buddhas: The Politics of Buddhism During the Koryo Dynasty

From the publisher’s website: Buddhism in medieval Korea is characterized as “State Protection Buddhism,” a religion whose primary purpose was to rally support (supernatural and popular) for and legitimate the state. In this view, the state used Buddhism to engender compliance with its goals. A closer look, however, reveals that Buddhism was a canvas on […]

The Book of Korean Poetry: Songs of Shilla and Koryo

From the publisher’s website: “Here at last in one English-language volume is the heart and soul of the Korean lyric tradition, brought to sensuous life by a poet who is our finest all-around translator of Korean literature.”—Bruce Fulton, Young-Bin Min Chair in Korean Literature and Literary Translation, University of British Columbia Korea’s history is divided […]

Buddhas and Ancestors: Religion and Wealth in Fourteenth-Century Korea

Publisher description: Two issues central to the transition from the Koryo to the Choson dynasty in fourteenth-century Korea were social differences in ruling elites and the decline of Buddhism, which had been the state religion. In this revisionist history, Juhn Ahn challenges the long-accepted Confucian critique that Buddhism had become so powerful and corrupt that […]

Korea: Art and Archaeology

This illustrated book, the first authoritative general introduction to the distinctive culture of this country to be published in English, traces its development chronologically from the Neolithic period (c. 6000 BC) right up to the present day. Korea, published in association with the opening of a major new permanent Korean Gallery in the British Museum, […]

The Land of Scholars: Two Thousand Years of Korean Confucianism

This book discusses the historical development of Korean Confucianism in terms of its social functions. It also examines the types of transfiguration Confucianism underwent and the role it played in each period of Korean history. The Land of Scholars spans from the Three Kingdoms period in 18 BC to the Joseon dynasty in 1910. The […]