New World Dharma

Interviews and Encounters with Buddhist Teachers, Writers, and Leaders

By Trevor Carolan
Foreword by Susan Moon

Subjects: Buddhism, Religion, Literary Criticism, American Culture, Cultural Studies
Paperback : 9781438459820, 214 pages, July 2016
Hardcover : 9781438459837, 214 pages, April 2016

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Table of contents

Foreword by Susan Moon

1. Dancing with China’s Old Masters: With Master Red Pine/Bill Porter

2. The Wild Mind of Gary Snyder

3. Grounded in Humanity: Gary Snyder on Back on the Fire

4. A Bloomsday Interview with Joanne Kyger

5. And So Make Peace: Talking Story with Maxine Hong Kingston

6. The Bedrock of Practice: With Sulak Sivaraksa in Bangkok

7. A Heart Free to Listen: The Awareness Practice of Thich Nhat Hanh

8. Embracing the Responsibility of the Moment: The Zen Politics of Jerry Brown

9. Avanti! The Dharma Poetics of Diane di Prima

10. On Forgiveness and Compassion: H. H. the Dalai Lama

11. On the Trail with Nanao Sakaki

Back on the Trail with Nanao

12. Dangerous Work: The Retirement Interview with Zen Master Robert Aitken-Roshi

13. Expatriate Passions: Meeting Donald Richie

14. A Conversation with Andrew Schelling

15. Notes from the Gone World: Lawrence Ferlinghetti on Street Smarts and the Poetry Rebellion

16. Beloved Renegade: With Allen Ginsberg at Cortes Island

Interviews and profiles of spiritual and cultural figures influenced by Buddhism.


Based on Trevor Carolan's interviews, profiles, and essays from the past twenty years, this book offers a fascinating and intimate look at many of the Buddhist (and Buddhist-inspired) spiritual and cultural leaders who have shaped our time. Drawn from the global mosaic of the arts and humanities, environmentalism, and governance, Carolan's collaborators include Buddhist teachers, poets, writers, activists, and even a politician. Readers will encounter Red Pine, Maxine Hong Kingston, Gary Snyder, Robert Aitken-Roshi, Jerry Brown, the Dalai Lama, Allen Ginsberg, along with many others. They explore engaged practice, East-West ethics, the role of dharma-influenced literature, Beat literature, social and political activism, and more. A rich resource for anyone interested in Buddhism, New World Dharma reveals a Buddhist consciousness responding to the challenge of rethinking what citizenship, community, and the sacred might mean in a global age.

Canadian literary scholar and journalist Trevor Carolan is Assistant Professor of English at the University of the Fraser Valley near Vancouver. His books include Return to Stillness: Twenty Years with a Tai Chi Master.


"…this is a book for the general reader who has an interest in getting to know some important figures of the contemporary Buddhist world better, as well as a desire to explore the influence that Buddhism has played on their lives." — Nova Religio

"This collection is a treat for anyone interested in how the Dharma is lived today. Each chapter is like a window that opens unto the life, adventures, quirks, beliefs and wisdom of some of its famous followers … Carolan's wish with this collection is to safeguard the wisdom of these teachers for future generations. In doing so, he also takes his place as one of them." — Pacific Rim Review of Books

"Congratulations to Trevor Carolan for creating a wise and excellent sequence of essays, accurate historical information, and interviews which provide very useful insights and Buddhist time-tracks to both Buddhist and non-Buddhist readers and researchers." — Ed Sanders, poet and historian

"New World Dharma sheds light on a major development in literary and spiritual life by giving a personal, social, internal look into the lives of key Buddhist writers and leaders. In hindsight, it is clear that the influx of Asian spiritual teachings into the West instigated a cultural awakening of major proportion. This book provides a sense of how the fabric of this cultural awakening was woven, thread by thread, over several decades, as the people interviewed were all connected in some way." — Fran Grace, coeditor of Meditation and the Classroom: Contemplative Pedagogy for Religious Studies