Thank you to Leslie Dorrough Smith (Editor) & the North American Association for the Study of Religion (NAASR) for the opportunity of a new publication in the volume Constructing “Data” in Religious Studies: Examining the Architecture of the Academy. 

“The volume 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.”



My response rests in Part III of the volume “scholars,” addressing the paper “The Thing itself Always Steals Away”: Scholars and the Constitution of their Objects of Study by Craig Martin. Titled: Caffeinated and Half-baked Realities: Religion as the Opium of the Scholar. 



Head over to Equinox to check out the new volume:(see