Kurtis R. Schaeffer

Frances Myers Ball Professor of Religious Studies


Kurtis R. Schaeffer is Professor and Department Chair in the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Virginia. He specializes in the literary and cultural history of Tibet. He is the author or editor of nine books and numerous articles, including The Life of the Buddha (Penguin Classics, 2015) and The Culture of the Book in Tibet (Columbia University Press 2009). He co-edited, with Mathew Kapstein and Gray Tuttle, Sources of Tibetan Tradition (Columbia, 2013), the largest anthology of Tibetan literature in English, and is currently at work on an anthology of classical Tibetan meditation texts. His other current book projects include The Story of the Dalai lama; The Madman's Wife: Community and Contemplation in the Life of a Tibetan Buddhist Nun (forthcoming from Columbia University Press). You can check out Kurtis' books on his author page at Amazon (, and his other work at Academia.Edu (