Tag Archives: General religious studies

Other Peoples’ Scriptures: Mythical Texts of Imagined Communities

In 2011 the Comparative Studies in Religion section of the American Academy of Religion hosted a memorable panel on “Other Peoples’ Scriptures: The Use of Sacred Texts across Religious Boundaries,” to which I offered a response. Two of those papers, by Ryan Szpiech and Nate Hofer, along with a contribution from Gary Sparks, were then published in Numen 61.4 (2014) as a special issue on the theme of using scriptures across religious lines. I served as guest editor for that issue, and wrote the introduction, which reflects on how religious people reimagine religious others and their sacred texts when they read scriptures across religious lines:

“Other Peoples’ Scriptures: Mythical Texts of Imagined Communities.” Numen: International Review for the History of Religions 61.4 (2014): 329–333.

Here is a pdf of the article text as accepted by Numen, but without the publisher’s formatting. It is posted here for personal use, following the publisher’s two-year embargo period. The published Version of Record of this article may be obtained at the journal’s web site.

Interreligious Boundaries and Encounters

In 2013 I wrote a chapter on the general subject of boundaries and encounters between religious communities for a volume on Understanding Interreligious Relations, edited by David Cheetham, Douglas Pratt, and David Thomas.

David R. Vishanoff. “Boundaries and Encounters.” In Understanding Interreligious Relations, ed. David Cheetham, Douglas Pratt, and David Thomas, 341–364. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013.

I was surprised to discover how little systematic theoretical reflection there had been on the subject within the field of religious studies itself, but I found plenty of relevant case studies to illustrate the chapter’s argument, which is related to my thinking about sacrificial listening. Many thanks to Whitney Patterson, a University of Oklahoma student who worked closely with me to find, sift, and think through all those fascinating case studies!

The book is a remarkable collection of essays addressing both theoretical topics and specific religious traditions. The table of contents may be found at OUP’s web site.

Other Peoples’ Scriptures: The Use of Sacred Texts across Religious Boundaries

In 2011 the Comparative Studies in Religion section of the American Academy of Religion hosted a memorable panel on “Other Peoples’ Scriptures: The Use of Sacred Texts across Religious Boundaries,” which I organized, and to which I offered a response:

David R. Vishanoff. “Other Peoples’ Scriptures: The Use of Sacred Texts across Religious Boundaries.” Response to papers delivered at the American Academy of Religion, San Francisco, November 21, 2011.

Here is a pdf of my prepared response.

Two of those papers were published in Numen 61.4 (2014) as a special issue on the theme of Other Peoples’ Scriptures, for which I wrote an introduction.

 

Reading Scriptures Across Religious Lines in Colonial India

This paper, presented while I was a graduate student at Emory University, compares two Hindus, two Christians, and two Muslims who wrote about one another’s scriptures–some appreciatively and some critically–during the long and fascinating 19th century in India. I loved this research, and I still hope to turn it into a major publication someday. In the meantime, here is a pdf of the paper as delivered. It may be cited as:

David R. Vishanoff. “Reading Scriptures Across Religious Lines in Colonial India: Interreligious Conflict and Reconciliation, and the Intrareligious Contestation of Identity.” Religion, Identity, and Reconciliation conference, Emory University Graduate Division of Religion, Atlanta, March 31, 2001.

The paper summarized a much longer and more theoretical but less well written paper that I submitted to Emory as my minor field general examination, of which a pdf is available here.