Jonathan Feuer

Jonathan Feuer's picture
Postdoctoral Associate in East Asian Studies and Lecturer in Religious Studies
Areas of interest : 
Korean Buddhism in the 20th Century

Jonathan C. Feuer earned his Ph.d in Asian Languages and Cultures from UCLA in 2023. His dissertation was entitled “The South Korean Buddhist Military Chaplaincy: Buddhist Militarism, Violence, and Religious Freedom.” His research interests include Buddhist modernity, religion and violence, and religion and the Cold War. He is a previous recipient of a Fulbright fellowship and ACLS Ho Foundation fellowship. Jonathan received his B.A. in English from Manhattan College and his M.A. in Religion from Rutgers University.


EAST 405, RLST 410

Buddhism and Violence

This course focuses on Buddhism and violence in the modern world, with a particular emphasis on Korean Buddhism. Buddhism is often perceived to be a pacifist religion; however, all across the modern Buddhist world, from Japanese Zen Buddhists during World War II, to Vietnamese Buddhists during the Vietnam War, to Buddhists in the contemporary United States, Buddhists have been complicit in and even supported state-sanctioned violence. Can Buddhism be deemed less (or more) violent than other major religions? We cover introductory topics on Buddhism, going back in history to see the fundamental philosophical debates on violence and killing in the tradition. Using Korean Buddhism as a case study, we explore in what ways, if any, these ancient debates relate to the modern world.

Term: Spring 2024
Day/Time: T 3:30 PM - 5:20 PM