Yesterday was the day of our panel (meaning the panel on intertextuality within Buddhist literature organised by Cathy Cantwell, Jowita Kramer and me), which means that I spent most of the day there. The final discussion has been especially challenging and interesting, since it has highlighted some of the elements one needs to bear in mind while thinking of textual reuse within a Buddhist milieu:
- genre: it seems that philosophy is a special case, in which literality of quotations is especially evaluated, whereas commentaries on religious texts are mid-way (as shown by Jowita) and religious and ritual texts reelaborate more freely (as shown by Cathy)
- time: surprisingly enough, Petra Kieffer-Pülz’ findings concerning Pāli harmonise with my own ones on Sanskrit and confirm that after a certain century, authors tend to be much more specific as for their sources, adding author’s and work’s names*
- authorship: unexpectedly, even a strong concept of authorship, as the one common in kāvya does not prevent a free reuse, since the readership still regards authored texts as it regards other kind of texts (as shown by Camillo Formigatti using the example of the avadāna-collections)
We did not have time, instead, to discuss further about geographic differences, nor about the impact of multilinguism (which had been dealt with by Charles DiSimone in his talk) on the accuracy of textual reuse.
Further elements you would take into account? Further applications of the elements we highlighted?
*Kiyotaka Yoshimizu has kindly reminded me of an article by Larry McCrea in this volume) on how Dignāga’s way of referring literally to his opponents has changed at once the Indian way of doing philosophy and of engaging with one’s opponents. Could Dignāga be the source of such later developments?
This post is a part of a series on the IABS. For its first day, see here. Please remember that these are only my first impressions and that all mistakes are mine and not the speakers’ ones