Lecturer, Department of Religious Studies
Office: Crowe Hall, 1860 Campus Drive Rd., 4-133
Phone: (847) 467-1368
Antonio Terrone specializes in Chinese, Tibetan, and Himalayan religions and cultures with a focus on Tibetan Buddhism as well as religion and ethnic nationalities policy in the People’s Republic of China (namely Tibetans and Uyghurs). His present work centers on rituals and practice within noncelibate Buddhist Tantric communities of present-day Tibet in the People's Republic of China. He received his M.A. degree from the Department of Asian Studies of the Oriental Institute of Napoli University (Istituto Universitario “L’Orientale,” Italy) in 1997 with a major in Chinese and Tibetan studies and a minor in Japanese studies and received his doctoral degree (2010) in Religious Studies/Asian Studies from Leiden University in the Netherlands. He joined Northwestern University as Visiting Assistant Professor in 2009 after completing a one-year position as “scholar in residence” at Gene Smith’s Tibetan Buddhist Resource Center in New York. Additionally, he taught at the Eugene Lang College of the New School for Liberal Arts in New York where he offered courses in Tibetan language and seminars on Asian cultures and religions including Buddhism, Asian Shamanism, and Himalayan cultures.
He has done extensive fieldwork in China, Tibet, India, and Nepal studying Tibetan Buddhism and researching the Tibetan Buddhist revelation tradition (gter ma) in contemporary Tibet. His research interests include Buddhist Tantric ritual, philosophy, and praxis, religion in contemporary Tibet, religion and politics in the People’s Republic of China, Buddhist revelation movements in Tibet, and the interface between Tibetan and Chinese religious traditions. His doctoral dissertation entitled “Bya rog prog zhu: The Raven Crest. The Life and Teachings of Bde chen ’od gsal rdo rje Treasure Revealer of Contemporary Tibet” is a critical study of the life, works, and activities of a present-day Buddhist visionary of Kham in Eastern Tibet. Based on textual analysis of a selection of his revealed spiritual texts and his autobiography as well as on ethnographic research conducted in his religious community, this study analyzes the career of a religious professional and charismatic leader that took place outside the Buddhist monastic environment. It also shows how some contemporary Tantric visionaries have galvanized the revival of Buddhist gatherings in Eastern Tibet after the end of the Cultural Revolution thus contributing to the redistribution of traditional religious knowledge and training among both Tibetan and Chinese Buddhist devotees.
Antonio Terrone teaches Tibetan Religions, Buddhism, Religion and Politics in the People's Republic of China; Buddhism and Politics, Religions and Cultures of the Himalayas, Hinduism, and East Asian Religions. In addition to several European languages, Antonio Terrone also speaks Mandarin Chinese, Tibetan, and basic Uyghur.
Books / Edited Volumes
Co-edited with Sarah Jacoby, Buddhism Beyond the Monastery: Tantric Practices and their Performers in Tibet and the Himalayas (Brill, 2009)
(ed.) Tibetan Visionaries and Their Revelations: Studies on gter stons and their gter mas. Journal of the International Association of Tibetan Studies (JIATS). Forthcoming in 2012.
"Messengers from Tibet's Past: The Role of Charismatic Leaders in the Spread of Tibetan Buddhism in Contemporary China.” Asiatica Ambrosiana, 4/2012, pp. 103-121.
"Cyberspace Revelations: Tibetan Treasures, Information Technology, and the Transnational Reader.”In A. Chayet, C. Scherrer-Schaub, F. Robin & J.-L. Achard (éds), Edition, éditions: l'écrit au Tibet, évolution et devenir. (Collectanea Himalayica 3), München: Indus Verlag, 2010, pp. 381-409.
"Householders and Monks: A Study of Treasure Revealers and their Role in Religious Revival in Contemporary Eastern Tibet.” In Sarah Jacoby and Antonio Terrone (eds), Buddhism beyond the Monastery: Tantric Practices and their Performers in Tibet and the Himalayas. Proceedings of the Tenth Seminar of the International Association of Tibetan Studies, Oxford 2003. Leiden: Brill, 2009, pp. 73-109.
"Tibetan Buddhism Beyond the Monastery: Revelation and Identity in rNying ma Communities of Present-day Kham,” in Monica Esposito (ed.), Images of Tibet in the 19th and 20th Centuries. Paris, École Française d'Extrême-Orient (EFEO), Coll. «Études thématiques» (22.2), 2008.
"Anything Can Be an Appropriate Treasure Teaching!" Authentic Treasure Revealers and the Moral Implications of Noncelibate Tantric Practice.” In Peter Schwieger and Saadet Arslan (eds), Tibetan Studies: An Anthology. Proceedings of the Eleventh Seminar of the International Association of Tibetan Studies, 2006, Halle: International Institute for Tibetan and Buddhist Studies, 2010, pp. 457-486.
"The New Journey to the West: Han Chinese Buddhist Devotees and their Role in the Development of Religion in Eastern Tibet” (Forthcoming)