Author Archives: Donovan Schaefer

Bill Maher and the Bowl of Common Sense: White Atheism and Islamophobia, Part 2

by Donovan Schaefer * Follow these links for part 1 and part 3 in this series. Comedy makes me uncomfortable.  Comedy starts with the creation of a zone of common sense, then defines whatever happens outside that zone as laughable.  … Continue reading

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Shelter in Place: How to Talk about the Alleged Boston Marathon Bombers?

by Donovan Schaefer White.  Foreign.  Muslim.  Young.  Traumatized.  Conservative.  Isolated?  Americanized. The Tsarnaev brothers, believed by law enforcement to have been responsible for last Monday’s bombing attack at the Boston Marathon, fit poorly into existing media scripts about the perpetrators … Continue reading

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On the Muslim Question: White Atheism and Islamophobia, Part 1

by Donovan Schaefer * Follow these links for part 2 and part 3. Karl Marx’s “On the Jewish Question” is a systematic critique of the particularism of religious commitments as an obstacle to the coalescence of the true community of … Continue reading

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Critical Questions Series 2: Donovan Schaefer

In this second instalment of the Critical Questions Series, we ask scholars of religion how they negotiate the difficult line between “politics” and scholarship. The previous responses can be found here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here. The line between scholarship and politics or, if you … Continue reading

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Affect, Tactics, and Islamophobia

Yesterday, Matt Sheedy posted an analysis of this short documentary clip posted on nytimes.com in December by Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grady (perhaps best known for their 2006 documentary feature, Jesus Camp), showing demonstrators drowning out an anti-Islam sermon delivered … Continue reading

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Masks of Fear: IDF and Hamas

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is a mutual hostage-taking.  Without lapsing into the myth of parity, it is safe to say that there is an ongoing and systematic deployment of fear and violence designed to immobilize, destroy, and control bodies on both … Continue reading

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This Must Be How Jon Stewart Feels Every Day

by Donovan Schaefer Bill O’Reilly: It is a fact that Christianity is not a religion; it is a philosophy. If the government was saying that the Methodist religion deserves a special place in the public square I would be on … Continue reading

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