Editor’s Corner: Critics or Caretakers?
It’s All in the Mapping
Keywords:religious studies, caretakers, critics, progressivism, Russell McCutcheon, Religious Studies Project
A short essay, in responding to an online roundtable (the Religious Studies Project), explores the role of progressive ideology in the academic study of religion, specifically with a focus on debates over Russell McCutcheon's distinction between scholars functioning as cultural critics or caretakers of religious traditions. This short piece is part of the "Editor's Corner" (an occasional section of the Bulletin where the editors offer provocative musings on theoretical challenges facing the discipline).
Harré, Rom and Luk van Langenhove, eds. 1999. Positioning Theory: Moral Contexts of Intentional Action. Oxford: Blackwell.
McCutcheon, Russell T. 2001. Critics Not Caretakers: Redescribing the Public Study of Religion. Albany, NY: SUNY Press.
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______. 1997b. “ ‘My Theory of the Brontosaurus’: Postmodernism and “Theory” of Religion.” Studies in Religion/Sciences Religieuses 26.1: 3-23.