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Dr Michael Willis has curatorial charge of the early south Asian and Himalayan collections from the late centuries BCE to the circa fourteenth century CE. He conducts research on these collections and makes them available through publication, display and study-access. His special interests include Sanskrit, Tibetan and the history of south Asian religions.
Michael received his PhD from the University of Chicago and joined the British Museum in 1994. He has been a visiting professor at the Collège de France, the University of Groningen and the School of Oriental and African Studies (University of London).
- The Indian Temple: Production, Place and
Collaboration with the Department of History at SOAS and the Welsh School of Architecture, Cardiff, is funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) for three years. The project examines how Indian temples where built and patronized and what their social and economic role was in medieval India.
External fellowships/ honorary positions/ membership of professional bodies
Fellow and Member of Council, Royal Asiatic Society. London
Monographs Editor, Society for South Asian Studies, The British Academy, London
M. Willis, Buddhist Reliquaries from Ancient India (London: British Museum, 2000)
M. Willis, Tibet: Life, Myth and Art (London, DBP, 1999)
M. Willis, Temples of Gopaksetra: A Regional History of Architecture and Sculpture in Central India, circa 600-950 (London: British Museum, 1997)
M. Willis, Inscriptions of Gopaksetra: Materials for the History of Central India (London, British Museum, 1996)
M. Willis, ‘Later Gupta History: Inscriptions, Coins and Historical Ideology’, Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society, 15 (2005) pp. 131-50