Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
Trim: 6 x 9
978-1-4422-5471-8 • Hardback • September 2015 • $111.00 • (£85.00)
978-1-4422-5472-5 • Paperback • September 2015 • $46.00 • (£35.00)
978-1-4422-5473-2 • eBook • September 2015 • $43.50 • (£33.00)
Tansen Sen is professor in the department of history at Baruch College, CUNY.
List of Illustrations
Foreword by Prasenjit Duara
List of Abbreviations
Introduction: China’s Encounter and Predicament with the Indic World
Chapter One: Military Concerns and Spiritual Underpinnings of Tang-India Diplomacy
Chapter Two: The Emergence of China as a Central Buddhist Realm
Chapter Three: The Termination of the Buddhist Phase of India-China Interactions
Chapter Four: The Reconfiguration of India-China Trade and its Underlying Causes
Chapter Five: The Phases and the Wider Implications of the Reconfiguration of India-China Trade
Conclusion: From Buddhism to Commerce: The Realignment and Its Implications
About the Author
This is a splendid book. It has an overarching theme buttressed by immense detail. It has a central argument, one that defies and challenges a conventional view. Its scholarly appurtenances are superb, including notes, documentation, and index. It is well written and interesting. Indeed, I found it quite difficult to put down, despite its length, weight, and academic content…. It is a real tour de force of religious and diplomatic history and has put forward a new and convincing historical interpretation. It is the most thorough book on the subject of Sino-Indian relations and Buddhism in medieval China and India yet written and will certainly become the standard book on the subject. I suspect it will retain that status for quite a long time. I strongly recommend this book to all those interested in the history of Buddhism, the history of China and India, and the interrelationship among these topics. (Previous Edition Praise)
— China Review International
Simply tracing the political interaction between the various powers that held sway in these two cultural areas during the span of time covered by Tansen Sen's book is no mean feat. But beyond the detail of events, we find here an elaborate and well-presented argument about India's decline as a source of Chinese Buddhism that is bound to have a widespread impact on both teaching and research…. The sweep of scholarship involved in this big picture is truly exhilarating, and the conclusions offered in general terms are welcome and persuasive. (Previous Edition Praise)
— Journal of Asian Studies
This is a truly trans-national work by a brilliant young Indian scholar who was brought up in China, trained at the University of Pennsylvania, did research in Kyoto and now teaches in New York. … The book is very readable, and Sen's arguments are easy to follow. … It is well researched, well written and stimulating. No doubt its impact on a variety of fields in the study of East and South Asia will be felt for many years to come. (Previous Edition Praise)
— Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies
Tansen Sen’s success in melding two disciplinary approaches, that of social history and the study of Buddhism, make this a seminal work in understanding the very complicated relation between the spread of religious beliefs and economic expansion. Little scholarly attention has been paid to the connections between the two great, vibrant neighboring civilizations that deeply influenced all of Asia in part because of the necessity of dealing with inaccessible texts written in very different languages, but Sen shows himself a master of a vast range of material. That it has seventy pages of bibliographic notes is an indication that Buddhism, Diplomacy, and Trade is a work of formidable scholarship. In showing how, in the period he is studying, the relationship between these two cultures is secularized and transformed, Sen opens up new vistas in both economic and religious history for specialists in Indian and Chinese studies and also for teachers in world history courses.
— Ainslee T. Embree, professor emeritus of history, Columbia University
Tansen Sen’s book lifts Buddhist exchanges from the confines of the individual national histories of India and China and places them squarely in a broader regional context. Earlier generations of scholars who focused on the history of Buddhism in either India or China described a decline in the years after 1000, but Sen depicts a thriving Buddhist world with trade between India and China before 1000 and little after, Sen shows conclusively that the trade continued, though in the hands of Arab middlemen. His world is much more interesting as a result.
— Valerie Hansen, Yale University
Tansen Sen’s work offers the most thorough overview to date of Sino-Indian relations in the period between the seventh and fifteenth centuries. Forcefully argued, well-documented, and clearly written, it will be of interest to scholars specializing in the history of Buddhism, Chinese and Indian military history, foreign relations of India and China, and economic history in pre-modern Asia, and will also prove helpful to world historians and scholars interested in the roots of modern relations between the two countries.
— John Kieschnick, Academia Sinica