Contributor Spotlights In Thdl

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THL Contributor Spotlight

John Vincent Bellezza

John Vincent Bellezza, Senior Research Fellow at the Tibet Center, University of Virginia, has written extensively on the nomads, history and culture of Upper Tibet, locating and exploring hundreds of pre-Buddhist archaeological sites, describing the monuments and the people that built them in great detail. The Iron Age civilization he has charted is associated with Zhang Zhung, Tibet’s ancient, pre-Buddhist kingdom and civilization. He has spent more than two decades in the western Himalaya and Tibet carrying out research on Upper Tibet: conducting interviews, reading texts, and surveying pre-Buddhist archaeological sites. John has published eight monographs, including Divine Dyads: Ancient Civilization in Tibet (1997), which looks at the mythic and religious make-up of two great mountain and lake pairs in Upper Tibet; Antiquities of Northern Tibet and Antiquities of Upper Tibet, in which he documents the physical and geographic traits of the archaeological sites, analyzing their ceremonial and utilitarian functions, and determining cross-cultural affinities; and Calling Down the Gods, in which he explores the history, ritual practices, and pantheon of deities of the spirit-mediums (lha pa) of Upper Tibet.

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