Northwestern Events Calendar


Lecture 7: Sherab Wangmo, "'Ocean of Dakinis’: Biography, Gender, and Agency in a treasure text of Khandro Dechen Wangmo (1868-1935?)"

When: Friday, April 14, 2023
10:00 AM - 12:00 PM CT

Where: Online

Audience: Faculty/Staff - Graduate Students

Contact: Joshua Shelton  

Group: The Khyentse Foundation Buddhist Studies Lecture Series

Category: Academic


This talk introduces the biograhies of the Ocean of Dakinis, a collection of  sixteen female figures revealed by Khandro Dechen Wangmo. Through contexualing the cultural, historical, and religious milieu in which it was produced, this talk provides an overview of the biographies included in the anthology and analyzes the common themes that emerge across them. Specifically, it focuses on how the biographies convey gender roles and agency in the text by examining the conversations between the female protagonists and their interlocutors. Furthermore, the presentation suggests that the biographies of the Ocean of Dakinis, along with other texts by Khandro Dechen Wangmo and Sang-ngak Lingpa, can be read as an example of nation-building in Kham during the Republican period in China, highlighting the collection's value in analyzing broader political and cultural developments in the region beyond the narrow confines of Tibetan religious history.

Sherab Wangmo is a Ph.D. candidate in the Religious Studies Department at Northwestern University. Her dissertation focus on a series of texts by Khandro Dechen Wangmo and Sang-Ngak Lingpa to explore the religious and historical milieu in which they lived, as well as the gender and agency portrayed in their works. 

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