Back at the 2015 North American Association for the Study of Religion meeting I was part of a panel responding to Jason Blum’s paper “On the Restraint of Theory.” The proceedings of that entire conference have to been published as an excellent little book edited by Aaron W. Hughes about the role of theory in religious studies during our current moment: Theory in a Time of Excess: Beyond Reflection and Explanation in Religious Studies Scholarship.Cover image of Theory in a Time of Excess

In my brief contribution to the volume I argue that theory must be understood as part of the production of knowledge and not just a tool used to explain the world. Our theories dictate the objects we choose to study in the first place.

For more on the book I recommend this excellent review over at Reading Religion.

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