From: Amy Smith
Date: Mon, 5 Nov 2007 10:36:04 -0500 (EST)
American Comparative Literature Association
"Arrivals and Departures"
Long Beach, CA
April 24-27, 2008
Seminar: "Secular Religion"
While the debate over secularization, which once seemed settled, has
reopened, there is no question that religion has changed in the
age. The needs and desires expressed in religion, and elements that
recognize from religion -- the desire for transcendence, ritual,
symbolism, the search for meaning, etc. -- take on new forms in the
popular culture, theory (philosophy, psychology, anthropology,
private life, politics, and other sites. This seminar concerns the
sometimes surprising sites in which we may find religion in
and twentieth-century culture, asking - where does religion go and
does it persist?
If a cultural form does not outwardly resemble religion, what is there
it that makes it recognizably religious; that is, what do we recognize
essentially religious? If traditional religious motifs are mobilized
other interests (political, social, psychological, etc), what is
effect of that redirection? How may we evaluate these forms of the
religious and particularly, what might ethical inquiry have to say
them? As this is a topic that is of interest to many theoretical
approaches, we welcome innovative and divergent inquiries into
and nonwestern cultural forms.
Panel organizer: Amy
Smith, Ithaca College and SUNY Cortland
Paper abstracts must be submitted on the ACLA website:
Questions can be
emailed to Amy Smith at amycoli_at_gmail.com