Education About Asia: Online Archives

Rude Awakenings: Zen, the Kyoto School, and the Question of Nationalism

Download PDF

EDITED BY JAMES W. HEISIG AND JOHN C. MARALDO
HONOLULU: UNIVERSITY OF HAWAII PRESS, 1994
381 PAGES

Reviewed by Brian Ruppert

Rude Awakenings is a work that addresses the concerns of European and North American scholars who have for at least a decade longed for a well-balanced consideration of the relationships between Zen Buddhists, the philosophical proponents of Zen in the so-called “Kyoto school,” and nationalistic trends in pre-World War II Japan. Most scholars recognize that many figures who called themselves Zen Buddhists or Zen “philosophers” were closely connected with the rising forms of nationalism of the era. However, not many scholars, until the writing of this book, had an understanding of these connections, their ideological character, and their historical context.