James Egge

A photo of James Egge

Professor and Associate Dean for Programs, College of Arts & Sciences

History and Philosophy

214 Pray Harrold


[email protected]


  • Ph.D., University of Chicago
  • MA, University of Chicago
  • BA, University of Virginia

Interests and Expertise

Professor Egge is a historian of religion whose research focuses on the Pali literature of Theravada Buddhism. He has written on Theravada conceptions of karma, the body and the role of visual perception in religious devotion. He is also interested in theories and methods for the study of religion, and has written on the use of conceptual metaphor theory as a method for the comparative study of religion.


  • RLST 100 The Comparative Study of Religion
  • RLST/HIST 306 Hinduism
  • RLST/HIST 307 Buddhism

Publications and Presentations

  • "Merit Transfer," in Oxford Bibliographies in Buddhism
  • "Theorizing Embodiment: Conceptual Metaphor Theory and the Comparative Study of Religion," in Figuring Religions: Comparing Ideas, Images, and Activities, ed. Shubha Pathak (State University of New York Press, 2013).
  • "Physical Boundaries and Bodily Control in Theravadin Accounts of the Buddha's Awakening and Final Nirvana" (forthcoming).
  • "Interpretive Strategies for Seeing the Body of the Buddha," in Constituting Communities: Theravada Buddhism and the Religious Cultures of South and Southeast Asia, ed. John Clifford Holt, Jacob N. Kinnard, and Jonathan S. Walters (State University of New York Press, 2003).
  • Religious Giving and the Invention of Karma in Theravada Buddhism (Routledge Curzon, 2002).