Tyler Roberts: Encountering religion: responsibility and criticism after secularism: Columbia University Press, New York, NY, 2013, xvi and 300 pp., $55.00

International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 76 (1):95-98 (2014)
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In the 1980s and 1990s, the theoretical energy in the study of religion came from postmodern theory and its appropriation by scholars who worked in, or at the margins of, the subfield called “philosophy of religion.” Today, philosophy of religion—at least in departments of religion and religious studies—threatens to kill itself with its own jargon; the theoretical energy in the study of religion comes from young scholars working in American religious history (such as John Modern, author of Secularism in Antebellum America) and a coterie of thinkers associated with the journal Method and Theory in the Study of Religion (MTSR), notably Russell McCutcheon and Timothy Fitzgerald. These thinkers and others argue in various ways that the academic study of religion is rightly constrained by its academic context, and therefore requires the bracketing of all discourse from the study of religion (whether in the discipline of history of religions, or that of theology) that assumes a natural human



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