This trilingual publication is a remarkable accomplishment and a landmark publication in Tibetan studies, making research findings accessible to the community for whom Shepa is a living practice. This is a welcome first publication on the tradition of Shepa as it exists in Chone, in the Amdo region of Eastern Tibet. The collaborative team have contextualized Shepa oration as part of Tibet's rich tradition of oral narratives, and have meticulously transcribed the oral narrations that existed in the memories of the older generation. They provide readers with faithful translations, and preserve the joyous mode of storytelling that fills the grassland.
Associate Professor and Canada Research Chair in Religion and Contemporary Society in Asia at the Institute for Asian Research, School of Public Policy and Global Affairs, University of British Columbia.
Bendi Tso is a sociocultural anthropologist working on borderlands, ethnicity, Indigeneity, and the documentation of oral traditions in China. She is currently working on a book project that examines the negotiation of an essentialized Tibetanness among disparate Tibetan subgroups on the Sino-Tibetan borderland characterized by ambiguity and transition. Bendi Tso received her Ph.D. in Anthropology from the University of British Columbia (2023) and is an incoming postdoctoral fellow in the Center for East Asian Studies at Stanford University (2024).
Marnyi Gyatso is a historian of empires and frontiers in East Asia. He is a Postdoctoral Associate at the Council on East Asian Studies of Yale University. His research focuses on the interaction and exchange between China and Inner Asia from the fourteenth to the twentieth century. He is currently working on a book project that examines China’s transition from empire to nation-state in Inner Asia between 1862 and 1962. He is also editing a book that explores how different ethnic groups along the rivers of the eastern Tibetan Plateau have adapted to, negotiated with, transformed, and interpreted their natural surroundings.
Naljor Tsering is a Ph.D. candidate in Ethnology at Southwest Minzu University and in Tibetan History and Philology at École Pratique des Hautes Études, PSL. He is also a member of the Center for Research on East Asian Civilizations. His research interests include Tibetan Indigenous beliefs, ritual practices, early Bon treasure literature, and Tibetan oral tradition. He is currently participating in the project entitled “Protecting the Kingdom with Tibetan Manuscripts: Codicological and Historical Analysis of the Royal Drangsong Collection from Mustang, Nepal.”
Mark Turin is an anthropologist, linguist and occasional radio presenter, and an Associate Professor of Anthropology at the University of British Columbia. Mark Turin writes and teaches on language reclamation, revitalization, documentation and conservation; language mapping, policies, politics and language rights; orality, archives, digital tools and technology. Indigenous methodologies and decolonial practice inform and shape his teaching and research. He is the author or co-author of four books, three travel guides, the editor of twelve volumes, and he edits the World Oral Literature Series with Open Book Publishers.