Catherine Hartmann

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Dr. Hartmann joined the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies as Assistant Professor of Asian Religions in 2020. She received a B.A. in Religious Studies from the University of Virginia in 2011, an M.A. in the History of Religions from the University of Chicago in 2013, and a Ph.D. from the Committee on the Study of Religion at Harvard University in 2020. She teaches courses about Buddhism and other Asian religions, including History of Non-Western Religions and Buddhist Ethics. 

Professor Hartmann's engagement with Religious Studies arises out of a longstanding interest in religion as a force that shapes our experience of the world, and in the practices religions develop to transform that experience. After growing up in a multi-religious household, she encountered Buddhism as an undergraduate, and hasn't looked back since. She is comfortable in classical Tibetan, modern Tibetan, and Sanskrit, and also reads Chinese and Hindi. She has spent over a year and a half in various communities in Asia, including summers at a Buddhist nunnery in Ladakh, at the Tibetan Library of Works and Archives in Dharamsala, at Rangjung Yeshe Institute in Kathmandu, and at Sichuan University in Chengdu.  

Her work focuses on the history of Tibetan pilgrimage to holy mountains and the goal of transforming perception while on pilgrimage, and she is currently working on a book on this topic. She is also interested in Buddhist ethics, vision and visuality, theories of place, and autobiographical writing. When not working on teaching or research, she likes to run, hike, and look at videos of cats on Instagram.

Areas of Specialization: Tibetan Buddhism, Buddhist Approaches to Perception, Buddhist Ethics, Pilgrimage

Curriculum Vitae

Personal Website:

Courses Taught at UW:

RELI/HIST 2315: “History of Non-Western Religions: Tibetan Buddhism,” Fall 2021
RELI 2050: “Religions of Asia,” Fall 2021
RELI/HIST 2315: “History of Non-Western Religions: Buddhism,” Summer 2021
RELI 1000: “Introduction to World Religions,” Spring 2021
RELI 2050: “Religions of Asia,” Spring 2021
RELI/HIST 2315: “History of Non-Western Religions: Buddhism,” Fall 2020
RELI 4310: “Seminar in Asian Religions: Buddhist Ethics,” Fall 2020

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