Tibetan Buddhist Ethnography

Deficiencies, Developments, and Future Directions


  • Mark Owen University of Winchester




Tibetan Buddhism, ethnography, reflexivity, methodology


In recent years scholars working in the area of Religious Studies have increasingly been obliged to acknowledge that the level of methodological rigour displayed in many studies on religious phenomena is unsatisfactory, perhaps particularly when compared to that of some academics operating in related subject areas. Arguably one of the principal areas in which an apparent reticence to engage with contemporary developments in method is evident is that of ‘religious ethnography’. The purpose of this short study is to assess the extent to which ethnographic practices in the study of Tibetan Buddhism have historically responded to methodological developments in ethnography and anthropology, and to briefly suggest ways in which studies in this area may progress in the future.


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How to Cite

Owen, M. (2011). Tibetan Buddhist Ethnography: Deficiencies, Developments, and Future Directions. Buddhist Studies Review, 27(2), 221–238. https://doi.org/10.1558/bsrv.v27i2.221