Zen Buddhist Rhetoric in China, Korea, and Japan
edited by Christoph Anderl
One of the key factors for the success of the Chán/Sǒn/Zen schools in East Asia was the creativity of their adherents concerning the development of innovative literary genres and the skillful application of linguistic and rhetorical devices in their textual products. From the very beginning, Zen Buddhists used literature in order to attract the attention and support of influential lay Buddhists, such as literati, officials, and members of the aristocracy. Consequently, Zen Buddhist texts had a deep and lasting impact on the development of East Asian languages, literary genres, and rhetorical devices, and more generally, on East Asian culture.
In this volume, leading specialists in East Asian Buddhism and linguistics analyze the interplay of language and doctrine/ideology in Chinese Chán, Korean Sŏn, and Japanese Zen, as well as tracing developments triggered by changes in the respective sociopolitical and socio-religious contexts.
As a special focus, Zen rhetoric will be related to pre-Chán Buddhist literary developments in India and China, in order to trace continuities and changes in the application of rhetorical strategies in the overall framework of Buddhist literary production.
Through this diachronic and comparative approach, the great complexity and the multifaceted features of Chán/Sŏn/Zen literature is revealed.