Annotated Bibliography on the Role of Feminism and Women in Buddhism

Decent Essays
Introduction Women in religion are so often swept away by the more prominent achievements of the male members of their order. This does not mean that these women did not play a formative role in their religion, but their stories are often unrecorded or ignored and their contributions are devalued. It is easy to believe that this is isolated to one religion that we might feel particularly uncharitable towards, however my research has shown that this happens in almost all religions around the world.
Buddhism is complicated with regard to women, as some countries’ version of it holds women in higher esteem than others. The whole religion has been debating on whether or not women can legitimately participate in enlightenment since
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Anand also discusses quite a bit about how the Aryans changed Indian society.

DeVido, Elise Anne. Taiwan's Buddhist Nuns. Albany: SUNY, 2010. Print. Taiwan’s nuns are singular within their religion. Taiwan has the most Buddhist nuns in the world as well as more nuns than monks. Unlike other country’s nuns, Taiwan’s Buddhist nuns play a large role in society, social services, and education and are highly respected. This book explores how Buddhism in Taiwan is shaped by nuns and ordinary women, who both play an important role. DeVido also shows the history of female Buddhists in China and Taiwan to explain how they came to be so valued in the present. She explores several different orders of nuns, as well as how popular philosophies have bolstered women in Taiwan. It is important to have sources that represent all sides of an argument in order to understand the full issue. DeVido’s book shows the rare circumstance where women are equal or more important than men in Buddhism. In Taiwan, nuns’ contributions to society are valued as they are nowhere else in the world. Taiwan went through a religious renaissance of sorts in the 1980’s, when there was more relative freedom for everyone, women included. Women poured into convents to pursue the opportunities that a nun’s life afforded them, and nuns also contributed to society in many ways. One of these ways was the formation of numerous relief groups and non-governmental organizations, or NGOs, which helped
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