Foreword GARY LEASE If self-reflection is any measure of maturity and independence, then the field of religious studies ought to be judged co-equal to the more established . natural, human, and social science stars in the academic firmament. A spate of publications during the last decade dealing with the foundational theory of the field, repeated studies of its undergraduate and graduate programme incarnations, and most recently even a special issue from the staid Journal of the American Academy of Religion ( 1994) pursuing a spate of questions surrounding the study of religion, all provide evidence that at least some of the participants in university programmes of instruction centring on the study of religion consider that area to be a discipline like any other. One might, of course, take the opposite tack. The argument could well be made that such narcissistic concern with the self betrays a genuine lack of self-confidence, even a lack of firm identity. Is it possible that not only in the eyes and minds of persons outside the field, but precisely in the reflections of those most intimately associated with the study of religion there is doubt about the legitimacy of the undertaking, above all
Method & Theory in the Study of Religion – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 1995
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