Visiting Assistant Professor of Religious Studies Abhishek Amar co-edited Cross-disciplinary Perspectives on a Contested Buddhist Site: Bodh Gaya Jataka, a volume in the Routledge Press South Asian Religion Series.
Amar and his co-editors, David Geary of Oxford University and Matthew Sayers of Lebanon Valley College, brought together the recent work of 12 scholars from a variety of disciplines - anthropology, art history, history and religion – highlighting their findings and perspectives on different facets of Bodh Gaya’s past and present.
Located in the North Indian state of Bihar, Bodh Gaya is recognized as the place where Buddha achieved enlightenment. According to the publisher, “the book discusses the dynamic and contested nature of this site, and looks at the tensions with the on-going efforts to define the place according to particular histories or identities. It addresses many aspects of Bodh Gaya, from speculation about why the Buddha chose to sit beneath a tree in Bodh Gaya, to the contemporary struggles over tourism development, education and non-government organizations, to bring to the foreground the site's longevity, reinvention and current complexity as a UNESCO World Heritage monument.”