Research Projects

Monks, Merchants and Mobility in the Making of a Transoceanic World : Missionary Buddhists into Maritime Asia, ca. 1650 – ca. 1750

(Funded under General Research Fund Scheme 2010 – 11 Exercise, Research Grants Council, Hong Kong)

Principal Investigator

Charles Wheeler, Research Assistant Professor, Hong Kong Institute for the Humanities and Social Sciences
(Remarks: Dr. Charles Wheeler left the University’s service from August 1, 2012.)

Total Fund Awarded

HKD 344,985

Project Duration

October 2010 – July 2012

Project Description

The objectives of this project are: 1) To conduct multi-site research at archives and temple sites in China, Vietnam, Taiwan, and Japan in order to conduct historical research on the role Buddhism played in the creation of merchant diaspora, transoceanic China society, and an intra-Asian maritime region that deepened inter-Asian interactions. 2) To move beyond my previous studies of the interaction between maritime societies, diasporic networks, and regional production, and the role that institutional Buddhism played in the development of transoceanic trade and society, and of a more integrated, cosmopolitan Asian society. 3) To foster a new dialog that advances these ideas about maritime regions, the role of religion in diaspora, and a new way of thinking about an interconnected Asia.