Critical Conversations in Russian Studies: Buddhism and the Uses of History in Russia

Wednesday, March 9, 2022

10:00 A.M.

Location: Online

Buddhism and the Uses of History in Russia

While the history of Buddhism in Russia has often been overlooked, it is vitally important to understanding both Russian statecraft and Buddhist practice: Buddhist narratives are embedded in the history of Russia, and Russian historical narratives are embedded in local practices of Buddhism. Join us for a conversation on the history of Buddhism in Russia, how that history matters to contemporary Russian Buddhists, and what scholars of Buddhism can learn from it. In conversation to discuss their new books will be Nikolay Tsyrempilov (Nazarbayev University), author of Under the Shadow of White Tara: Buriat Buddhists in Imperial Russia, and Justine Buck Quijada (Wesleyan University), author of Buddhists, Shamans, and Soviets: Rituals of History in Post-Soviet Buryatia. Moderated by Kathryn E. Graber (Indiana University).

View a recording of the panel discussion

Panelists + Moderator


Kathryn Graber, an Associate Professor of  Anthropology and Central Eurasian Studies at Indiana University, is a linguistic and sociocultural anthropologist with special interests in language and media in post-Soviet Eurasia.


Justine Buck Quijada is an Associate Professor in the Department of Religion and an affiliated member of the Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies Program at Wesleyan University. Her research focuses on post-Soviet religious practice in Buryatia, indigenous urban shamanism, New Age neo-shamanism, secularism and ritual. 


Nikolai Tsyrempilov is an Associate Professor in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences at Nazarbayev University (Kazakhstan). He has published monographs and papers exploring the history of Buddhist communities in Tibet, Mongolia and Russia as well as the role of Tibetan Buddhism in political history of Central Eurasia and Russia.