Photo of Ellen Posman

Dr. Ellen Posman is featured as a scholarly expert in a documentary showcasing the hierarchal plights that women face in religion.

Professor showcases knowledge in Buddhist documentary

March 26, 2018

Photo of Ellen PosmanBaldwin Wallace University's own Dr. Ellen Posman, associate professor and chair of the religion department, is featured as the scholarly expert in an award-winning documentary which showcases a few of the hierarchal plights that women face in religion.

The film, "Bhikkhunī. Buddhism, Sri Lanka, Revolution," details the struggles of the first fully ordained Buddhist nuns in the Theravada Buddhist tradition.

Chance meeting

Posman met the film's director, Małgorzata Dobrowolska, while she was on sabbatical in 2015 conducting research on Buddhist nuns and the issues surrounding their full ordinations.

She hopes to incorporate her research and information from the film into her classes at BW, and to screen the film on campus.

Intersection of travel and research

Posman, who earned degrees in comparative religion from Harvard, Stanford and the University of California, has conducted research all over the world.

In pursuit of research on religion and culture, she has been to India, Nepal, Israel, Palestine, Turkey and Taiwan, as well as Sri Lanka, where she met Dobrowolska. Posman also enjoys textual research and received a grant to participate in the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) 2013 summer seminar on classical Buddhist texts.