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Jason C. Bivins

peppering their writings with rhetorical justifications that sound exciting, daring even: ideas are contested, agon is celebrated, books look outward to “margins” and inward to “cracks.” Couched within this discourse is a story Religious Studies tells of its movement beyond “belief,” a category declared

Kathryn Lofton

In Postmodern Belief: American Literature and Religion Since 1960 (2010), literary critic Amy Hungerford asked, “Can we do without belief ?” Through close readings of work by Allen Ginsberg, Don DeLillo, and Marilynne Robinson, Hungerford answers, quite simply, “no.” Recent works of American

Bosco B. Bae

I Introduction To paraphrase Rodney Needham ( 1972 ): belief is dead. The anthropologist famously declared that the concept of belief should be abandoned as a critical category and tool of analysis for the study of religion. Like many great scholars, the conclusion has taken precedent over

Russell T. McCutcheon

’ many references to studying beliefs, experiences, meanings, identities, and impulses, all of which are understood as dispositions that, although private , are nonetheless also considered to be: 1. public (inasmuch as people express them [a key verb here]), 2. universal (inasmuch as large numbers

Mary-Jane Rubenstein

In her recent work on religion in American literature, Amy Hungerford seeks to correct what she sees as an excessive devaluation of the category of “belief” among religious studies scholars ( 2010 ). This retreat from belief—one might even call it an allergy—could be attributed to a number of

Esther Eidinow

modern rationality? The tendency has been to describe her/it as an expression of a sense of vulnerability among the populations that worshipped her (see below, “Tyche as a Problem of Belief”). Although no doubt this may have been a part of what Tyche represented, as a summary of her cultural role, it

Mayanthi L. Fernando

, usually to protect public order or the rights and freedoms of others. That distinction between conscience and its manifestation is undergirded by a prior division between belief and practice, one that both privileges belief as the authentic site of religion and understands practices as signs or

Extraordinary Experiences and Religious Beliefs

Deconstructing Some Contemporary Philosophical Axioms

Gregory Shushan

, it is supposedly unintelligible to look to religious experience for the origins of religious beliefs (the “experiential source hypothesis” in David Hufford’s terminology). Indeed, for many critics it is not so much a chicken-or-egg question (which comes first: religious experience or religious belief

Craig Martin

within the last two years (and with mainstream academic presses: Oxford University Press, Wiley Blackwell, and Penn State University Press, respectively), advance a theory of religion according to which religions are about practitioners who have religious experiences, and who form beliefs and then

Justin L. Barrett

Suppose someone argued that everyone is irrational or intellectually vicious to believe their moral convictions are true on the grounds that (1) people hold a variety of beliefs about moral truths and (2) scientists have reason to think that moral beliefs are, in large part, a product of the