The Legend of Barlaam and Josaphat as a Paradigm for Cultural and Religious East-West Entanglement
CERES Palais, room "Ruhrpott" (4.13)
The story of Barlaam and Josaphat, known in the West from a very early time in the form of Christian hagiography, has fascinated scholars since the discovery in the middle of the 19th century of the fact that one of its protagonists, Josaphat, has his origin in the figure of the Bodhisattva, and that it contains narrative elements from the Buddha biography. The oldest version of the story is preserved in Arabic, and the story was adopted in different hagiographic traditions and different Europpean languages like Greek, Latin, Georgian, Ethiopic, Hebrew, Slavonic, Armenian has been represented in art. The conference will address and discuss a wide range of aspects of the legend and its transmission.