AAR Cultural History of the Study of Religion Group
November 21-25, 2014, San Diego, CA
The Cultural History of the Study of Religion group is devoted to historical inquiry into the social and cultural contexts of the study of religion and into the constructions of ‘religion’ as an object of scholarly inquiry.” This year CHSR is sponsoring or co-sponsoring four sessions at the San Diego AAR, with a workshop on the role of comparison in research on religion and panels on the study of religion in distinctive institutional settings the impacts of this on constructions of difference, French Feminisms and an author-meets-critics panel on Brent Nongbri’s Before Religion.
Friday, November 21, 2014
Location disclosed to those registered. To register place “SORAAAD – 2014 – Registration” in the subject line of an email addressed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
A22-121 Local Accents: The Study of Religion in Distinctive Institutional Settings
Saturday – 9:00 AM-11:30 AM
Hilton Bayfront- 410A
This session explores how the category of “religion” gets constructed on the ground in specific academic institutions. Each paper explores a detailed case study: the American University in Beirut; Ursula Niebuhr at Barnard College; and the Center for the Study of World Religions at Harvard Divinity School. Taken together, the papers form a springboard for a critical discussion of the role of “difference” in the formation of religion as an object and discourse of study in the American academy.
Diane Segroves, Ball State University, Presiding
Caleb McCarthy, University of California, Santa Barbara
Rethinking the Teaching of Religion at the American University of Beirut, 1900-1930
Leslie Ribovich, Princeton University
A Woman’s Religious Work, Protestant Privilege, and Interfaith Ideals: The Story of Ursula Niebuhr and the Barnard and Columbia Religion Departments
Lucia Hulsether, Harvard University
Residual Battle Fatigue: Racial Formations and the Discourse of Religious Pluralism at Harvard Divinity School, 1960-1975
Eugene V. Gallagher, Connecticut College, Responding
Ann M. Burlein, Hofstra University
Randall Styers, University of North Carolina
A24-209 Feminism and Subjectivity in the Study of Religion
Monday – 1:00 PM-3:30 PM
Co-sponsored by Sociology of Religion Group,
Critical Theories and Discourses on Religion Group and
Cultural History of the Study of Religion Group,
or STAR (the Social Theory and Religion Cluster).
STAR Business Meeting, 3:20 pm
2014 marks the thirty- and forty-year anniversaries of key works in French social theory, including Julia Kristeva’s Revolution in Poetic Language (40th anniversary) and Luce Irigaray’s Speculum of the Other Woman (40th) and An Ethics of Sexual Difference (30th). In honor of their legacies, the panelists in this session explore related questions of feminism and subjectivity in the study of religion. With reference not only to Irigaray and Kristeva, but also to Michel Foucault, Judith Butler, and Saba Mahmood, they treat critical turns in affect theory and speech act theory, the ethics of alterity, and the discursive formation of subjectivity as a crucial category in the study of religion.
Morny Joy, University of Calgary, Respondent
Abigail Kluchin, Ursinus College
An Alternative Lineage for Affect Theory: Returning to Irigaray’s Speculum de l’Autre Femme and Kristeva’s Revolution du Langage Poétique
Wesley Barker, Mercer University
Signifying Flesh: The Ambiguity of Desire and the Possibility of Alterity in Irigaray’s Ethics of Sexual Difference
Samantha Langsdale, University of London
Framing Historical Women’s Agency: A Critical Reading of Speech Act Theories
Constance Furey, Indiana University
Hermeneutics of Intersubjectivity: Foucault, Butler, and Limit Experiences
William E. Arnal, University of Regina;
Randall Styers, University of North Carolina;
Ipsita Chatterjea, Vanderbilt University
A24-319 Brent Nongbri’s Before Religion: A History of a Modern Concept (Yale University Press, 2013): Critical Engagement
Monday – 4:00 PM-6:30 PM
Co-sponsored by Cultural History of the Study of Religion Group and SBL Religious World of Late Antiquity Section
This session will include four responses to Brent Nongbri’s Before Religion: A History of a Modern Concept. Cosponsored by the AAR’s Cultural History of the Study of Religion Group and the SBL’s Religious World of Late Antiquity Group, the panelists will consider both Nongbri’s account of the pre-history of the concept of “religion” and the implications of Nongbri’s work for future scholarship.
Cynthia M. Baker, Bates College, Presiding
Andrew Durdin, University of Chicago
Religio without Religion: Reflections on Recent Debates in Roman Religion and Religious Studies
James Broucek, Iowa State University
Historicizing the Concept of Religion: A Prerequisite to Critical Research, or an Intrinsically Interesting Subject?
Kathleen M. Sands, University of Hawai’i
The “Religious” and “Secular” Meanings of “Playing Indian”: An Assessment of Brent Nongbri’s Before Religion
Nathan Rein, Ursinus College
Beyond Religion: Directions for Research Following Nongbri’s Before Religion
Brent Nongbri, Macquarie University, Responding