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Grant number: FT-12616-75

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Albert W. Sadler
Sarah Lawrence College (Bronxville, NY 10708-5999)

A Critical Appraisal of the Writings of Alan Watts, 1915-1973

To place Alan Watts' published works in a biographical context and appraise their worth in light of Watts' own changing goals. Watts, schooled in a strict Church of England atmosphere, rejected that Church turned to Buddhism, in his mid-twenties, he returned to the Church, was ordained, and wrote books of a theological and apologetic nature. Finally became "free lance”: without quite losing his priestly vocation. Question: Where does he stand in relation to Suzuki, Krishnamurti, the Sasakis, and the rest? How well did he succeed in representing Asian thought to Christians, and in fitting selected themes drawn from the mystical and devotional teaching of the Hindus and Buddhists into a framework of theological questions that were essentially Christian? Most importantly, what is Watts’ place in the history of the East-West exchange in mid-twentieth century America?

Project fields:
Religion, General

Summer Stipends

Research Programs

Total amounts:
$2,000 (approved)
$2,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
7/1/1975 – 9/30/1975