Peter Romaskiewicz

Buddhist Studies, Medieval Chinese Religions, Sensory Studies, Composition and Rhetoric
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Peter Romaskiewicz received his Bachelors of Arts from Rutgers University, graduating with highest honors in Religious Studies for his thesis on exegetical traditions relating to the Yoga Sūtras of Patañjali. Working under the guidance of Chun-fang Yu and Robert A.F. Thurman, Peter received his Masters from Columbia University for his research comparing the Western models of virtue and utilitarian ethics with Buddhist ethics. After graduation, he began living in Chinese Buddhist monasteries in the US and Taiwan, translating classical Chinese Buddhist texts into English and lecturing on Buddhist philosophy. During this time he also taught for the Woodenfish Program, a non-profit organization that brings university students to China to live and study in a traditional Chinese Buddhist monastery for a month during the summer. Since 2013 Peter been in charge of developing the academic curriculum for the Woodenfish Program in consultation with other volunteer instructors. Before arriving at UCSB, Peter also worked for a non-profit that taught meditation to schools and jails. At UCSB, he has received several departmental awards, recognition for his teaching, and both the Dean’s Fellowship and the Graduate Humanities Research Fellowship, year-long central fellowships acknowledging promising scholarship. Peter’s dissertation research, as eclectic as his experience, explores the convergence of medieval Chinese religions and the sense of smell. The working title for his dissertation is, “Sacred Smells and Strange Scents: Olfactory Imagination in Medieval Chinese Religions.”