Catherine Prueitt

Catherine Prueitt

Catherine Prueitt

Assistant Professor

Buddhism, South Asian philosophy, philosophy of perception, cross-cultural philosophy, ethics and embodiment

Dr. Prueitt's research engages one Buddhist and one Hindu philosophical tradition on the question of how humans construct and experience their worlds. Her research focuses on a theory of concept formation drawn from the Sanskrit works of the 7th century CE Buddhist Dharmakīrti, as well as on how two later 10th-11th century Hindu philosophers, Utpaladeva and Abhinavagupta, adapted and expanded this theory. She finds that these traditions provide innovative perspectives from which to articulate an ethics of embodiment in the everyday world. She is currently working on her first book manuscript, tentatively titled Selves in Pain: Self-Knowledge and the Scope of Experience. Her teaching interests lie in premodern South Asian traditions, theories of religion and philosophy, religion in contemporary popular discourse, and cross-cultural philosophy.

Selected Publications

 

  • “Is There an Ideal Scientific Image? Sellars and Dharmakīrti on Levels of Reality.” In Garfield, Jay, ed. Freedom from Foundations: Sellars and Buddhist Philosophy. Pickering & Chatto Publishers, Studies in American Philosophy Series. Anticipated release in early 2019. 

 

  • 2018a. “Karmic Imprints, Exclusion, and the Creation of the Worlds of Conventional Awareness in Dharmakīrti’s Thought.” Sophia. Vol. 57: 313-335.

 

  • 2018b. Review of Refiguring the Body: Embodiment in South Asian Religions, by Barbara Holdrege and Karen Pechilis, eds. Body and Religion. Vol. 1.2: 212-217.

 

  • 2017. “Shifting Concepts: The Realignment of Dharmakīrti on Concepts and the Error of Subject/Object Duality in Pratyabhijñā Śaiva Thought.” The Journal of Indian Philosophy. Vol. 45: 21-47.

Expanded Publication List

  • “Beyond Time, Not Before Time: Abhinavagupta’s Critique of Dharmakīrti on the Beginningless of Conceptual Differentiation.” In Robert Sharf, Evan Thompson, and Catherine Prueitt, eds. Conceptuality and Nonconceptuality in Buddhist Philosophy. Anticipated release in 2020.

 

  • Review of Human Being, Bodily Being: Phenomenology from Classical India, by Chakravarthi Ram-Prasad. Solicited by Mind. Anticipated release in late 2019.

Grants and Fellowships

National Endowment for the Humanities Fellow at the Summer Institute on Self-Knowledge in Eastern and Western Philosophies at the College of Charleston (May 2018)

National Endowment for the Humanities Fellow at the Summer Institute on Perception and Presupposition at Cornell University (June – July 2016)

American Council of Learned Societies/Robert H.N. Ho Family Foundation Program in Buddhist Studies Dissertation Research Fellow (June 2014 – March 2015)

Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Graduate Teaching Fellow at Spelman College (Fall 2013 – Spring 2014)

Fulbright Graduate Student Research Fellowship to India (October 2011 – March 2012)

Courses Taught

George Mason University (Fairfax, VA)

 “Buddhism” (Fall 2017, Fall 2018)

 “Honors Research Methods” (Fall 2018)

 “Religion and Literature: The Rāmāyaṇa” (Summer 2018)

 “Human Religious Experience” (Fall 2017, Spring 2018)

 “Hinduism” (Spring 2018)

 

Emory University (Atlanta, GA)

“Asian Religious Traditions” (Fall 2015)

 “Introduction to Sacred Texts” (Fall 2012)

 

Spelman College (Atlanta, GA)

“Introduction to Sacred Texts” (Spring 2014) 

“Hinduism: From the Vedas to Today” (Spring 2014)

Education

PhD in Religion (Emory University, 2016)

B.A. in Religion with Honors; Japanese (University of Rochester, 2007)

Recent Presentations

Featured Talk:

“How to Bring Words to Life: Apoha as the Transition between Nonconeptual and Conceptual Language in Pratyabhijñā Śaivism.” The 2018 Toshihide Numata Book Award Symposium “Meaning in the World and in Texts: Thoughts on Buddhist Philosophy of Language” (November 2018, University of California, Berkeley). See https://youtu.be/oAMo1wS4dz0 for video.

2018-2019 Presentations:

“Selfhood and the Value of Pain.” Canadian Philosophical Association Annual Congress (upcoming in June 2019, Vancouver, BC, Canada)

“At the Limits of Pain: Attention, Exclusion, and Self-Knowledge in Pratyabhijñā Śaivism.” Virtues of Attention Global Philosophical Perspectives III: Workshop on Mind, World, and Attention (upcoming in April 2019, New York University, New York)

“Why Care about Freedom and Agency?” American Philosophical Association Central Annual Meeting (upcoming in February 2019, Denver, Colorado)

“Subverting the Monological Ideal by Embracing the Nonhuman World: How Abhinavagupta’s Nondual Ontology Could Support Charles Taylor’s Dialogical Ethics.” American Academy of Religion Annual Meeting (November 2018, Denver, Colorado)

“Subverting the Monological Ideal by Embracing the Nonhuman World: How Abhinavagupta’s Nondual Ontology Could Support Charles Taylor’s Dialogical Ethics.” American Academy of Religion Annual Meeting (November 2018, Denver, Colorado)

“Do Concepts Create Worlds? A Comparative Analysis of Dharmakīrti’s and Abhinavagupta’s Arguments Concerning Concepts and Subject/Object Duality,” Conceptuality and Nonconceptuality in Buddhist Philosophy Workshop, University of California, Berkeley (March 2018, Berkeley, California).

"Beyond Time, Not Before Time: Affirming the Reality of Beginningless Conceptual Differentiation in Indian Philosophy" Columbia Society for Comparative Philosophy (February 9th, 2018, Columbia University, New York).