Tyler A. Lehrer

Credentials: Thailand

2018 SKJ Fellow

Tyler A. Lehrer is a Ph.D. student in the Department of History with a minor emphasis in gender and women’s studies. He holds an M.A. in religious studies from the University of Colorado Boulder. Tyler’s research engages the history of religious and diplomatic exchange in the early modern Indian ocean, specifically intersections between Buddhist kingdoms in Sri Lanka and mainland Southeast Asia in the context of European colonization. Pursuant to a period of research in Sri Lanka, with his SKJ Fellowship, Tyler will conduct preliminary pre–dissertation research in Bangkok and Ayutthaya, Thailand on Buddhist history writing about the patronage of monastic and royal lineages. In the mid– eighteenth–century, an unlikely and short–lived diplomatic relationship between two Buddhist kingdoms and the Dutch East India Company led to the re-establishment of a politically–legitimizing ordination tradition for Buddhist monks that has been narrated in a panoply of Lankan and Thai sources in subsequent centuries. He hopes to discover how these led to the galvanization of key ideas of difference—ethnic, gendered, and religious—across maritime Southern Asia and their role in contemporary nationalist and xenophobic mobilizations.

Read Tyler A. Lehrer’s fellowship report here.