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Department of the History of Art and Archaeology, School of Arts

Dr Peter D. Sharrock

BA (Cantab), MA (SOAS), PhD (SOAS)


Peter Sharrock
Department of the History of Art and Archaeology

Senior Teaching Fellow

School of Arts

Senior Teaching Fellow, History of Art and Archaeology

Centre of Jaina Studies

Member, Centre of Jaina Studies

Centre of Buddhist Studies

Member, Centre of Buddhist Studies

Centre of South East Asian Studies

Academic Staff, Centre of South East Asian Studies

The Southeast Asian Art Academic Programme

Project Board Member

Dr Peter D. Sharrock
Email address:
020 7898 4462
020 7898 4699
SOAS, University of London
Thornhaugh Street, Russell Square, London WC1H 0XG
Brunei Gallery
Office No:
Office Hours:
Wednesdays 3pm-4pm


Peter Sharrock experienced the American war in Indochina for four years as the Reuters correspondent and discovered how, as the French said, Indochina ‘attaches to the skin’.
The war put the large Angkor temple complex out of reach and this was prolonged as Cambodia closed on itself and underwent the agony inflicted by Pol Pot. He finally reached Angkor in 1990, when landmines abounded and control of temples passed daily between the government and the Khmers Rouges.
His doctorate is on a new interpretation of the Buddhism and imperial politics of the greatest king of ancient Cambodia, Jayavarman VII.

He has developed a 'coherentist' approach to the history of Southeast Asia in which the very limited written sources – temple dedications inscribed in stone – are supplemented by trying to capture the religious and political messages embedded by kings in the decoration of state temples and in sacred icons and by monitoring the international flow of ideas across the states lying between the great centres of learning and technology in India and China.


History and art history of the Khmer empire of Angkor; the temple art and architecture of Southeast Asia from 400CE to 1400 CE; Buddhism and Hinduism and their impact on the formation and development of states in Southeast Asia; Sanskrit and local languages in the sacred epigraphy of Cambodia, Thailand, Laos and Champa (Vietnam).


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Available for
Regional Expertise
  • South East Asia
Country Expertise
  • Cambodia


Authored Books

Sharrock, Peter (2013) Banteay Chhmar: forest citadel of the Khmer Empire. Bangkok: River Books. (In Press)

Book Chapters

Sharrock, Peter (2011) 'The Naga-enthroned Buddha of Angkor. Appendix.' In: Bunker, Emma C. and Latchford, Douglas, (eds.), Khmer Bronzes: New Interpretations of the Past. Chicago: Art Media Resources, pp. 481-491.


Sharrock, Peter (2011) 'Berlin’s 1182-86 CE Bodhisattva ‘Sunlight’ or ‘Moonlight’.' Indo-Asiatische Zeitschrift, 15 . pp. 31-40.

This list was generated on Sat Nov 28 00:36:36 2015 GMT.