The Exile and Diplomacy of the 13th Dalai Lama (1904-1912): Tibet’s Encounters with the US and Japan

Nov 29, 2016 | 12:00 PM - 1:30 PM

Kobayashi Ryosuke (Research Fellow, Toyo Bunko; Harvard-Yenching Institute Visiting Scholar)
Chair/Discussant: Leonard van der Kuijp (Professor of Tibetan and Himalayan Studies, Harvard University)
Co-sponsored with the Asia Center, the Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies, and the Reischauer Institute of Japanese Studies

This talk will show how Tibet attempted to participate in the international community around the demise of the Qing Dynasty in 1912 by focusing on its relationships with the US and Japan. The sojourns of the 13th Dalai Lama (1876-1933) to Mongolia, China and India from 1904 to 1912 were remarkable turning points that led him to reconsider the deteriorating relationship with the Qing dynasty/China and to begin participating in the modern international community. Through encounters with foreign dignitaries from Britain, Russia, the US and Japan, the Dalai Lama, who had never before been away from Tibet, developed his understanding of the international community and of Tibet’s position in the world. This talk will discuss how the Dalai Lama conducted his diplomacy with the U.S. and Japan, two newly influential countries in East Asia at the end of 19th century, and how those countries dealt with Tibetan issues.