Constructing "Data" in Religious Studies

Examining the Architecture of the Academy

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Editor(s): 
Leslie Dorrough Smith
NAASR Working Papers
  • Sheffield, UK: 
    Equinox
    , October
     2019.
     256 pages.
     $35.00.
     Paperback.
    ISBN
    9781781796764.
     For other formats: Link to Publisher's Website.

Description

Constructing “Data” in Religious Studies provides a critical introduction to the ways in which the category “data” is understood, produced, and deployed in the discipline of religious studies. The volume is organized into four different sections, entitled “Subjects,” “Objects,” “Scholars,” and “Institutions,” with an epilogue by Russell McCutcheon and Aaron Hughes.

The volume’s aim is to reflect, first, on the problems, strategies, and political structures through which scholars identify (and therefore create) data, and second, on the institutions, extensions, and applications of that data. The first three sections are spearheaded by a key essay and followed by four responses, all of which consider how the politics of the academy determine the very nature of the things we purport to study. The fourth section considers what these concepts look like as they are applied and further institutionalized in college and university structures, and itself includes four essays on “teaching,” “departments,” “research,” and “labor.” Finally, the epilogue closes the volume with a consideration on the politics of scholarly collegiality, transforming the data-makers (scholars) into data themselves.

About the Author(s)/Editor(s)/Translator(s): 

Leslie Dorrough Smith is Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Religious Studies and Philosophy at Avila University (Kansas City, MO), where she is also the Director of the Women’s and Gender Studies Program.