In his classroom, there is a clear divide between scholar and practitioner, between religious studies and religious practice. Obviously, [Brooks] is an example of how those two worlds comingle. But he is also committed to further advancing the study of religion as a secular discipline – in the same way that one studies history, psychology, sociology, and the like.
Perhaps it is time to stop treating the word “religion” as a tool of the scholar and to start treating it as the very object of study.
There is the perception that critical scholarship will not get a fair hearing, and there is a perception that theological or confessional scholarship is incapable of being fair.
Perhaps my greatest argument against ‘non-religion’ has been based on the notion that it stands as a relational umbrella…
Would it be better to say “Japanese Religions”? How about “religions of Japan”? Or, is “religion” even the best word to use to describe the Japanese traditions we’re studying?
Professor Bruce Lincoln from the University of Chicago discusses a variety of topics including werewolves, critical theory, pedagogy, and self-imposed estrangement from the academic study of religion.