ALASTAIR GORNALL

ASSISTANT PROFESSOR

Pillar / Cluster: Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences

Biography

Alastair Gornall gained his Ph.D. in South Asian Studies from the University of Cambridge in 2013. He is currently Assistant Professor in the Humanities at the Singapore University of Technology and Design, Research Associate in the Department of the Languages and Cultures of South Asia at SOAS, University of London, and 2018 Research Fellow, The Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation. His research focuses on the intellectual and cultural history of Buddhism in South and Southeast Asia. Alastair also enjoys translating and publishing forgotten works of Southeast Asian poetry and literature composed in Sanskrit, Pali and Sinhala. He teaches courses on Asian philosophy, literature, science and religion.

Recent Publications

Books

  • 2014a. Ciotti, Giovanni, Alastair Gornall and Paolo Visigalli, eds. Pupikā: Tracing Ancient India Through Texts and Traditions. Contributions to Current Research in Indology Volume 2. Oxford: Oxbow Books.

Articles

  1. 2018 (with Amal Gunasena). “A History of the Pali Grammatical Traditions of South and Southeast Asia by Vaskaḍuvē Subhūti (1876): Part One: The Kaccāyana-vyākaraṇa and its commentaries.” Journal of the Pali Text Society XXXIII: 1–53.
  2. 2018 (with Aleix Ruiz-Falqués).“Verses of a Dying Arahant: A Revised Edition and Translation of the Telakaṭāhagāthā.” Journal of the Pali Text Society XXXIII: 55–100.
  3. 2017 (with Justin Henry). “Beautifully Moral: Cosmopolitan Issues in Medieval Pali Literary Theory.” In Cosmopolitan Sri Lanka, ed. by Alan Strathern and Zoltán Biedermann. London: University College London Press.
  4. 2015. “Fame and Philology: R.C. Childers and the Beginnings of Pāli and Buddhist Studies.” Contemporary Buddhism, vol. 16, no. 2: 462–489.
  5. 2014b. “How Many Sounds Are in Pāli? Schisms, Identity and Ritual in the Theravāda Saṅgha.”Journal of Indian Philosophy, vol. 42, no. 5: 511–550.
  6.  2014c. Kārakain Cāndra Grammar: An Interpretation from the Pāli Buddhist śāstras”. In Pupikā: Tracing Ancient India Through Texts and Traditions. Contributions to Current Research in Indology Volume 2, edited by Giovanni Ciotti, Alastair Gornall and Paolo Visigalli, 87–113. Oxford: Oxbow Books.

Book Reviews

  • 2014d. How Theravāda is Theravāda? Exploring Buddhist Identities, edited by Peter Skilling, Jason A. Carbine, Claudio Cicuzza, and Santi Pakdeekham, reviewed in Religions of South Asia, 8.2: 237–241.

EDUCATION BACKGROUND

  • 2009 – 2012, PhD, South Asian Studies, University of Cambridge
  • 2009, MA, Study of Religions, SOAS, University of London (Distinction)
  • 2008, BA, Study of Religions, SOAS, University of London (1st Class Hons.)

AWARDS & ACHIEVEMENTS

  • 2009 - 2012, Rapson Scholarship, University of Cambridge
  • 2008 - 2009, AHRC Research Preparation Masters Award, SOAS
  • 2007, Undergraduate School Prize, SOAS

 

RESEARCH INTERESTS

  • South and Southeast Asian Religion
  • South and Southeast Asian Literature
  • South and Southeast Asian Intellectual History
  • History of Science