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Jin Y Park Professor and Department Chair, Philosophy & Religion Philosophy and Religion

Jin Y Park
(202) 885-2919 (Office)
CAS | Philosophy/Religion
Battelle-Tompkins 118
Office Hours (Spring 2023)
Tuesday 2:00-4:00 pm
PhD, State University of New York at Stony Brook; MA, New York University; MA, Yonsei University; BA, Yonsei University (Seoul, Korea)

Jin Y. Park is Professor and Department Chair of Philosophy and Religion at American University. She also served as Founding Director of Asian Studies Program from 2013-2020. Park specializes in East Asian Buddhism, Buddhist and comparative ethics, intercultural philosophy, and modern East Asian philosophy. Her research focuses on gender, violence, politics of discrimination, and narrative philosophy. Marginality has been a consistent theme in her scholarship which deals with the marginalization of non-West and non-Western philosophy, of women’s philosophy, and of some forms of philosophizing, revealing the power structure in philosophy and aiming for the voices of the margin to be heard.

Park currently serves as President of the North American Korean Philosophy Association and President-Elect of the American Academy of Religion. She also served as President of the Society for Asian and Comparative Philosophy (2018-2019).

Park’s research in Buddhism focuses on the Zen and Huayan schools of East Asian Buddhism on language, violence, and ethics. In her comparative study, Park reads Zen and Huayan Buddhism together with postmodern thought in Continental philosophy, with a special focus on Jacques Derrida’s deconstruction.

Park’s research on modern East Asian philosophy examines the dawn of philosophy in East Asia and the East-West encounter in this context.

In her monograph Buddhism and Postmodernity: Zen, Huayan, and the Possibility of Buddhist-Postmodern Ethics (2008), Park discusses Buddhism and continental philosophy on the topics of, among others, self, language, and violence. In this book, Park offers the "ethics of tension" as a potential ethical paradigm drawn from Buddhism and postmodern philosophy.

Reflections of a Zen Buddhist Nun (2014), is a translation of a book published in Korean in 1960 by Kim Iryŏp (1896-1971), a writer, first-generation Korean feminist, Buddhist nun, and philosopher. In this book, Kim Iryŏp offers a creative interpretation of Buddhist philosophy and practice.

In Women and Buddhist Philosophy: Engaging Zen Master Kim Iryop (2017), Park proposes a new mode of philosophizing based on the discussion of Kim Iryŏp’s life and philosophy.

Park is also the editor of volumes: Buddhisms and Deconstructions (2006), Merleau-Ponty and Buddhism (co-edited, 2009), Comparative Political Theory and Cross-Cultural Philosophy (2009), and Makers of Modern Korean Buddhism (2010).
See Also
Department of Philosophy and Religion
For the Media
To request an interview for a news story, call AU Communications at 202-885-5950 or submit a request.


Spring 2024

  • PHIL-380 Colloquium in Philosophy: Nonviolence: Phil and Practice

Scholarly, Creative & Professional Activities

Selected Publications


For a comprehensive list of Book Chapters and Journal Articles, see my

Selected Recent publications (Book chapters and Journal articles)


  1. “Action and Praxis in Modern Korean Philosophy.” In Key Concepts in World Philosophies: Everything You Need to Know About Doing Cross-Cultural Philosophy, edited by Sarah Flavel and Chiara Robbiano. London: Bloomsbury Academics, 2022.


  1. “An Examined Life: Women, Buddhism, and Philosophy in Kim Iryŏp.” Journal of World Philosophies 5 (Winter 2020): 176-18
  2. “Hyeam Sŏnsa ŭi Sŏn sasang kwa Han’guk Pulgyo ŭi segyehwa” (Sŏn Master Hyeam’s Buddhist thoughts and the globalization of Korean Buddhism). Hyeam Sŏnsa ŭi Sŏn Sasang kwa Segyehwa (Sŏn Master Hyeam’s Buddhist thoughts and globalization). Hyeam Sŏnsa muhwa chinhŭnghoe, ed. Seoul: Sihwaŭm, 2020, 97-136.    
  3. “Doing Philosophy at the Margin.” American Philosophical Association’s Newsletter on Asian and Asian American Philosophers and Philosophies 20, no 1 (Fall 2020): 55-57.


  1. “Living without a Canopy: Flanagan, Derrida, and Zen Buddhism on the Production of Meaning” In Naturalism and Asian Philosophy: Owen Flanagan and Beyond, edited by Bongrae Seok. Routledge 2019, 92-110.
  2. “Temporality and Non-temporality in Li Tongxuan’s Huayan Buddhism.” In Dao Companion to Chinese Buddhist Philosophy: Dharma and Dao, edited by Sandra A. Wawrytko and Youru Wang. Springer, 2019, 325-347.
  3. “Kyŏnghŏ Songu and the Existential Dimensions of Modern Korean Buddhism.” Journal of Korean Religions 10, no. 2 (Oct 2019): 247-274.
  4. “Law of Genre and Intercultural Philosophy: A Reading of Kwok-ying Lau’s Phenomenology and Intercultural Understanding.” Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 18, no. 1 (January 2019): 119-126.


  1. “Toccata and Fugue of a Stranger.” Étrangeté, vol. 2 (2018):109-125.
  2. “Religion beyond the Limits of Reason: Inoue Enryō, Kim Iryŏp, and Tanabe Hajime on Philosophy of Religion.” In Reconfiguring Philosophy of Religion, edited by Jim Kanaris. Albany: State University of New York Press, 2018, 131-150.


  1. “Philosophizing and Power: East-West Encounter in the Formation of Modern East Asian Buddhist Philosophy.” Philosophy East and West 67, no. 3 (July 2017): 801-823.
  2. “Zen Buddhism and the Space of Ethics.” In A Mirror is For Reflection: Understanding Buddhist Ethics, edited by Jake Davis. New York: Oxford University Press, 2017, 73-91.
  3. “Derida wa Pulgyo, yŏsŏng kŭrigo p’ongnyŏk e kwanhayŏ” (On Derrida, Buddhism, Women, and Violence). Pulgyo p’yŏngnon (The Buddhist Review) 70 (Summer 2017): 31-50.
  4. “Pŏphwagyŏng saropkye ilgi, kŭrigo chonggyojŏk segyegwan e tahayŏ” (A new reading of the Lotus Sūtra, and about a religious worldview), Modern Buddhism (December 2016-January 2017).


Professional Services


Grants and Sponsored Research

  • The Uberoi Foundation Religious Studies Grant
  • Academy of Korean Studies, Laboratory for the Globalization of Korean Studies, Co-Researcher, on the project "Traces of Reason: The Korean Approach to Logic and Rationality and Its RElation to Buddhist Traditions from India and China"
  • Mellon Fellowship
  • American Academy of Religion Individual Research Grant
  • Korea Foundation Advanced Research Grant
  • Academy of Korean Studies, Translation of Korean Buddhism Grant
  • Korea University, International Center for Korean Studies, Korean Studies Publication Series Grant