Reuse and Intertextuality in the Context of Buddhist Texts


  • Elisa Freschi Austrian Academy of Sciences
  • Cathy Cantwell Oriental Institute, University of Oxford



textual reuse, South Asian and Tibetan Buddhism, plagiarism, originality, intertextuality


The bulk of the present volume focuses on the reuse of Buddhist texts. The Introduction gives some background to the topic of textual reuse in general and discusses the reasons for undertaking the analysis of textual reuse within Buddhist texts. It then elaborates on the extent of its pervasiveness within Buddhist literature through the example of Tibetan ritual texts. Lastly, it takes stock of the articles on text-reuse and discusses some general lines of interpretation of the phenomenon of textual reuse in Buddhism, highlighting the importance of the genre over that of the time and language of composition. Thus, philosophical or technical texts tend to quote explicitly, whereas ritual texts see the predominance of the conveyed message over the transparency of the transmission so that reuse is mostly silent. Religious texts of various forms come in between these two extremes.


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Freschi, Elisa. 2015a. ‘Quotations, References, etc. A glance on the writing habits of a late M?m??saka’. Journal of Indian Philosophy 43(2–3): 219–255.

———. ed. 2015b. Special issue on ‘The reuse of texts in Indian philosophy’. Journal of Indian Philosophy 43(2–3 and 4–5).

———. 2015c. ‘The reuse of texts in Indian Philosophy. Introduction’. In Journal of Indian Philosophy 43(2–3): 85–108. Special Issue. Edited by Elisa Freschi.

Freschi, Elisa and Philipp André Maas, eds. 2017 (in press). Adaptive Reuse: Aspects of Creativity in South Asian Cultural History. Wiesbaden: Deutsche Morgenländische Gesellschaft. Harrassowitz.

Hugon, Pascale. 2015. ‘Text re-use in early Tibetan epistemological treatises’. Journal of Indian Philosophy 43(4): 453–491. Special Issue. Edited by Elisa Freschi.



2017-01-20 — Updated on 2017-01-20


How to Cite

Freschi, E., & Cantwell, C. (2017). Introduction: Reuse and Intertextuality in the Context of Buddhist Texts. Buddhist Studies Review, 33(1-2), 1–7.



Guest Editorial