Director of Undergraduate Studies
After completing an undergraduate degree in Economics at Keio University, Ryūichi Abé acquired a master’s degree from School of Advanced International Affairs, the Johns Hopkins University. He then turned to Religious Studies and was awarded an M.Phil and Ph.D. from Columbia University. Abé’s research interests center around Buddhism and visual culture, Buddhism and literature, Buddhist theory of language, history of Japanese esoteric Buddhism, Shinto-Buddhist interaction, and Buddhism and gender. He has been teaching wide-ranging graduate and undergraduate courses on East Asian religions and premodern and early modern Japanese religions. His publications include Great Fool–Zen Master Ryōkan (University of Hawai'i Press), the Weaving of Mantra–Kūkai and the Construction of Esoteric Buddhist Discourse (Columbia University Press), “Word” (In Lopez ed, Critical Terms in Buddhist Studies, University of Chicago Press), “Genjô sanzô no tôei: Shingon hasso gyôjôzu no saikaishaku” (Tripitaka Master Xuanzang and His Reflections: reinterpreting the narrative painting series Deeds of the Shingon Patriarchs), Sano Midori, et al. eds., Chûsei kaiga no matorikkusu II (Matrix of Medieval Paintings II, Seikansha Press), “Heian shoki tennô no seiken kôtai to kanjô girei” (Early Heian Imperial Succession and Abhiseka Ritual), Nemoto Seiji, et al. eds., Nara Bukkyô no dentô to kakushin (Tradition and Innovation in the Buddhism of Nara, Bensei Shuppan Press), and “Revisiting the Dragon Princess: her role in medieval origin stories and its implications in reading the Lotus Sutra” (forthcoming).