Prof. Dr. Esther-Maria Guggenmos



/ Professor, Deputy Chair

Institut für Sprachen und Kulturen des Nahen Ostens und Ostasiens - Lehrstuhl für Sinologie
Prof. Dr. Esther-Maria Guggenmos
Artilleriestraße 70
91052 Erlangen

Raum: 01.119
Telefon: 09131 85 29356

Selected Publications

Selected Lectures


Esther-Maria Guggenmos is deputy chair of sinology at the Institute for Near Eastern and East Asian Languages and Civilizations, University Erlangen-Nuremberg, while the International Consortium for Research in the Humanities (IKGF, is directed by the Chair of Sinology, Prof. Dr. M. Lackner. Trained in Sinology, Religious Studies and Buddhist Studies at the Universities of Münster, Fujen (Taiwan, DAAD) and Ghent (Belgium, FWO fellowship), Guggenmos has specialised in Chinese Buddhism. In her PhD thesis (Gent 2010), she analysed the attraction of a Buddhist self-denotification in the urban areas of Taiwan by examining biographical narratives of Taiwanese lay Buddhists based on a qualitative sociological data analysis. While at Erlangen, she served as research coordinator at the IKGF (2009-2015), simultaneously persuing research on the relationship between Buddhism and divination with respect to legitimation strategies of divinatory practices, the enumeration of mantic techniques in the Buddhist canon, Buddhist adaptations of the temple oracle, a translation project on the Biographies of Thaumaturge Monks, and her habilitation project on a concrete Buddhist divinatory ritual. In the academic year 2014/15, she served as visiting professor of religious studies at Münster University. Besides the research projects mentioned above, Guggenmos’ interests lie in the field of Chinese Buddhist apocrypha, the Huayan school, transmission processes of Buddhist ideas, the role of religion (especially Buddhism and Christianity) in Chinese cultures and hybrid spaces, contemporary Chinese Buddhism, empirical and qualitative methods, Chinese intellectual history and religious aesthetics with a focus on smellscapes. 

Guggenmos has taught courses on religious studies as well as sinology, ranging from the theory and method of religious studies, the history of religions in Europe and Asia, to Classical Chinese, Chinese art history, the Silk road, Chinese leisure time activities of the upper class literati, and courses directly related to her research such as on Buddhism and its Chinese transformations, divination and the concepts of fate and prediction. She is a speaker for the research group on religious aesthetics of the German Association for the Study of Religions (DVRW, and serves on the board of the Center for the Anthropolgy of Religions (Erlangen University, Guggenmos has led several excursions and academic visits to China and Taiwan and regularly visits Asia to undertake field research or to engage in academic exchanges at Chinese, Taiwanese and Japanese research institutions (Nanzan Research Institute for Religion and Culture, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Shandong University, Fagu Shan, etc.).


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