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Vaia Touna

Taking seriously critiques of historiography produced in recent decades, Vaia Touna advocates for an alternative approach to the way the past is studied. From Euripides’ tragedy Hippolytus, to the notion of voluntary associations in the Greco-Roman world, to the authenticity of traditional villages in Greece, Fabrications of the Greek Past argues that meanings (and thus identities) do not transcend time and space, and neither do they hide deep in the core of material artifacts, awaiting to be discovered by the careful interpreter. Instead, this book demonstrates that meanings are always relative to their present-day context; they are historical products created by social actors through their ever-contemporary acts of identification.


“By disturbing the notion of an easily knowable Greek past, Touna makes an invaluable contribution to critical scholarship regarding ancient cultures and to contemporary theory about ideological uses of history.”

- Naomi Goldenberg, University of Ottawa

“From an insider to Greek tradition, expert in its modern appropriations and translations, Fabrications is an important stimulus to metatheory and self-reflexivity in the study of religion, ancient and contemporary.”

- Gerhard van den Heever, University of South Africa

“Vaia Touna expertly dissects modern discourses on the past, arguing that our contemporary interests don't just color our accounts of the past, they constitute them. A fantastic book.”

- Brent Nongbri, author of Before Religion: A History of a Modern Concept


Edited by Aaron W. Hughes

Theory and Method are two words that cause considerable consternation in the academic study of religion. Although everyone claims to be aware of and to engage them, the fact of the matter is that they remain poorly understood. Some see the terms as irritants that get in the way of data interpretation and translation. Others may invoke them sporadically to appear in vogue but then return quickly and myopically to their material and with little concern for the larger issues that such terms raise. To contribute to these debates, the present volume reproduces select articles from Method and Theory in the Study of Religion (MTSR) from the first 25 volumes of the journal, and allows a group of younger scholars to introduce and review them, asking if the issues raised are still relevant to the field.

Read the Inaugural Editorial now, please click here.


International Review for the History of Religions

NVMEN publishes papers representing the most recent scholarship in all areas of the history of religions ranging from antiquity to contemporary history. It covers a diversity of geographical regions, and religions of the past as well as of the present. The approach of the journal to the study of religion is strictly non-confessional. While the emphasis lies on empirical, source-based research, typical contributions also address issues that have a wider historical or comparative significance for the advancement of the discipline. Numen also publishes papers that discuss important theoretical innovations in the study of religion and reflective studies on the history of the discipline. The journal publishes book reviews and review articles to keep professionals in the discipline updated about recent developments.

European Science Foundation Ranking A.

Occasionally, Numen announces news about the activities of the International Association for the History of Religions (IAHR) and its member associations. See also:

NOW AVAILABLE - Online submission Articles for publication in Numen can be submitted online through Editorial Manager. Please click here.

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Carole M. Cusack

Christoph Bochinger and Jörg Rüpke (eds), (2017) Dynamics of Religion: Past and Present; Proceedings of the XXI World Congress of the International Association for the History of Religions . Berlin: DeGruyter. ix + 296 pp. ISBN 9783110450934 (hbk.) This edited volume results from the

David Flusser

SALVATION PRESENT AND FUTURE BY DAVID FLUSSER Jerusalem Since Albert Schweitzer, the importance of eschatology for original Christianity has rightly been stressed. Later, a further point entered the scholarly discussion: If Christianity at its very beginnings expected that "the present

Anders Klostergaard Petersen

extreme sports as well as in arts (Marina Abramović’s The Artist Is Present is a telling case). In the modern, secularized world, asceticism is expressed in the variety of bodily exercises found outside the more narrow sphere of religion as traditionally defined; but rather than seeing this in contrast

Guillaume Dye

from the idea present in the former text. In Q 70, what is implied is unceasing prayer (this explains the singular in Q 70:34 — there is only one prayer to guard, since it is always the same, unceasing prayer), whereas Q 23:9 refers to several prayers — probably three daily prayers. This idea of

Pia Andersson

mainly came to do religious rituals on the mound. These visits had become an integral part of the archaeologists’ daily life, just as they had become used to visits from film teams, journalists, and local and distant tourists. In 2003 additional panels were put up in the nearby visitor center, presenting

Anders Klostergaard Petersen

publish the most readable and interesting articles in Religionsvidenskabeligt Tidsskrift — a journal in the study of religion in the Scandinavian languages, located at our department. A special issue (no. 64) of the journal was published in 2016. However, I found it obvious also to present some of our