"TAKING RELIGION SERIOUSLY" : ERIC SHARPE'S COMPARATIVE RELIGION: A HISTORY AS APOLOGY DONALD WIEBE I have very much appreciated Eric Sharpe's history of the field of Religious Studies.' 1 He has provided there a wealth of information . about scholars, debates, and movements in the field and of the establishment of Religious Studies in the curriculum of the modem western university and of its growth and development through a variety of associations, societies, journals and other such institutions. Nevertheless, it seems to me that his history of the field is not simply a history but also an apology, of sorts, and that it is so despite his 1 This essay makes use of material found in my paper "History or Mythistory in the Study of Religion? The Problem of Demarcation" presented to a a conference on the institutional context of the study of religion held in marburg in June, 1988. The paper will appear in the proceedings of the conference. 72 recognition in the preface that his concern is with "the multi- disciplinary and non-confessional approach to the study of religion" that takes the religious traditions to be "phenomena to be observed, rather than as creeds to be
Method & Theory in the Study of Religion – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 1989
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