Centre of Buddhist Studies

Dr Eichman Jennifer

Key information

Centre of Buddhist Studies Research Associate


I completed my Ph.D. in Religion at Princeton University in 2005. My primary area of expertise is late Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) Chinese Buddhist traditions, however, my research extends from the sixteenth to twenty-first century. 2016 saw the publication of my book, A Late Sixteenth-Century Chinese Buddhist Fellowship: Spiritual Ambitions, Intellectual Debates, and Epistolary Connections, which dealt with the sustaining power of associative life in the creation of a Chinese Buddhist fellowship and the contemporary intra-Buddhist and Yangming Confucian discourses vital to their desire for self-cultivation. Theoretically, I have been focused on the relationship between network and discourse. However, my next two projects shift that focus from a network of people to the circulation of ideas prominent in late sixteenth-century discourse on "the three teachings coalesce in the one” (sanjiao heyi 三教合一) and also to late Ming Buddhist reading practices. My current research projects concern four main areas of inquiry: Religious Literacy; Female Buddhist Practice; Elite Conceptions of the Three Teachings; and Yangming Confucian Discourse.

I am the convener of the Chinese Buddhist Reading Group at SOAS. If you would like to join, please email me at jennifer.eichman@gmail.com

Research interests

Chinese religious history of the late medieval and modern periods; the dynamic interchange between Confucian and Buddhist traditions; Buddhist social organization, network analysis, and epistolary culture; women and Buddhism.

Contact Jennifer