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Receptacle of the SacredIllustrated Manuscripts and the Buddhist Book Cult in South Asia$
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Jinah Kim

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780520273863

Published to California Scholarship Online: September 2013

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520273863.001.0001

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Text, Image, and the Book

(p.xxvi) (p.1) Introduction
Receptacle of the Sacred

Jinah Kim

University of California Press

The introduction identifies the primary concerns of this study as an art-history and material-culture study of the illustrated manuscripts and the Buddhist book cult in medieval South Asia.An illustrated Buddhist manuscript in medieval India was designed as a three-dimensional object that could be animated and that could perform magical wonders, comparable to an app of an interactive digital book designed for an electronic device like an iPad.Buddhist bookmakers in medieval South Asia took the mutually reinforcing roles of text, image, and book to transform an already sacred text such as the Prajñāpāramitā sūtra, a Mahāyāna Buddhist philosophical treaty, into a suitable cultic object of Esoteric Buddhist practitioners.

Keywords:   book cult, interactive book, history of book, word and image, material culture, genealogy of Buddhist manuscripts

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