Paride Stortini is a BOF research fellow at Ghent University, which he joined after a JSPS fellowship at Tokyo University. He has a PhD in history of religions from the University of Chicago, a BA and MA in East Asian languages and religious studies from the Universities of Venice and Padua. Stortini investigates the intellectual and cultural history of Buddhism in modern and contemporary Japan from a transnational perspective.
His dissertation, which he is turning into a monograph, is titled Reimagining India between Science and Religion: Indology and Modernity in Japanese Buddhism, and shows the active role of Japanese Buddhists in redeploying ideas and images on India in scholarship, literature, and visual culture to inform the role of religion in modern Japan.
At Ghent University, Stortini is developing a second project titled Building Buddhist Heritage in Postwar Japan: The Silk Road between History and Memory at Yakushiji Temple. This project explores the concept of “Silk Road” in twentieth century Japan, at the intersection between cultural heritage, religious practices of memorialization and pilgrimage, and media representation of travel and “Buddhist cosmopolitanism,” centering on the case study of the temple and Buddhist community of Yakushiji, Nara Prefecture.
His articles appeared in Journal of World Buddhist Cultures, Journal of Religion in Japan, Religions, and other journals and edited volumes. He served as editorial assistant for History of Religions, and he is currently book review editor for Japanese Religions.