Orientalism

The Wilderness of Mirrors: Nationalism, Religion, and Secret Intelligence

Podcast
You've heard of the CIA, but did you know that they're just as interested in religion as we are? Join Dr. Michael Graziano and Jacob Noblett as they discuss the impact of the OSS and CIA's religion-oriented intelligence operations across the globe!

The Critical Humanist Study of Islam

Podcast
What sort of discursive traps to we fall into when talking about 'Islam' or 'the West'? How might we reframe our discussions with a critical humanist approach? In this episode, Khurram Hussain joins Andie Alexander to discuss his recent book, The Muslim Speaks (Zed Books, 2020) explore the benefits of critically engaging these issues in a way that takes seriously the human-focused study of religion.

#ClassificationMatters | Discourse! September 2021 (with video)

Podcast
Kicking off our first episode of Discourse!, RSP co-founder David Robertson, Ting Guo, and Jacob Barrett discuss the effects of classification in vaccination resistance, the Texas abortion ban, and the equation of the hijab with oppression. It's an exciting episode—be sure to tune in!

Editors’ Picks, Summer 2018: Disenchanting India

Response
This week, Ella Bock tells us why she thinks you should re-listen to our interview with Johannes Quack on Indian Rationalism, and a Relational Approach to Non-religion: "A great listen for better understanding the boundary between religion and non-religion, especially outside of a western context!"

Indian Rationalism, and a Relational Approach to Nonreligion

Podcast
It is unfortunate fact that in popular ‘Western’ imagination, the land of India is frequently orientalised, and naively conceptualized as ‘the quintessential land of religion, spirituality, and miracles.’ Although we would certainly not want to completely invert this stereotype by substituting one unnuanced and inaccurate construct for another, ...

Of Demon Kings and Protestant Yakṣas

Response
The disappointment of Western pacifists here is not unlike the reaction of early Orientalists who, disappointed by the ritualism and deity-worship they found in living Buddhist cultures, described a degenerate Buddhism. Let me begin by saying that this is not a critique, but an effort to contribute to a conversation about issues that have affected me personally as a scholar. In particular,...

“The Last Word…?” A Response to Bruce Lincoln’s interview on “The Critical Study of Religion”

Response
Can one really engage in a “serious conversation” in which one always has “the last word”? Or is that perhaps a “misrecognized monologue,” to use Lincoln’s terms? And what are the potential political implications of the assertion that scholars “have the last word”?

At the Limits of Orientalism: The Politics and Problems of Labelling in the Career of Michael A. Cook

Response
Having so vigorously rocked the academic boat early in his career, Cook later changed tack gracefully when he realised that he had set a course in the wrong direction. Few scholars in the discipline of Islamic Studies could claim to be as qualified as Michael Cook to advise students on the matter of early career publications.