Sisyphus and I

Or, Theologians I Have Known in Three Decades as Religionswissenschaftler


  • Will Sweetman University of Otago



Religious studies, theology, David Hume



My work as a scholar of religion began in a Department of Religious Studieswhich had been the first in the United Kingdom not to be connectedto Theology. I now teach in a Religion programme which has recentlysevered its institutional connection to Theology. However, for many ofthe intervening years in my three decades in the discipline I worked incontexts which combined theology with religious studies. My researchbegan with reflection on the historical origin of the academic study ofreligion. This article reflects on the relationship between theology andreligious studies as I have experienced it, and argues that it is crucial tomaintain the distinction and to communicate it clearly to those outsideof our discipline.

Author Biography

Will Sweetman, University of Otago

Will Sweetman is Associate Professor of Asian Religions at the University ofOtago, where he has taught for fifteen years. His research interests centre on interactionsbetween the religions of Asia and the West in the early modern period.


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How to Cite

Sweetman, W. (2020). Sisyphus and I: Or, Theologians I Have Known in Three Decades as Religionswissenschaftler. Journal for the Academic Study of Religion, 32(2-3), 145-165.

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