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Religion and Science as Forms of Life

Anthropological Insights into Reason and Unreason

Edited by Carles Salazar and Joan Bestard

238 pages, bibliog., index

ISBN  978-1-78238-488-5 $90.00/£64.00 Hb Published (January 2015)

eISBN 978-1-78238-489-2 eBook


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Reviews

“The publication of this volume marks a rich addition to long-established anthropological fields of magic, religion, and science. More importantly, however, the book is an important, much-needed injection to arguably sidelined anthropological fields of belief, disbelief, and, relatedly, unresolved contradiction.” · Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute

Religion and Science as Forms of Life: Anthropological Insights into Reason and Unreason brings together various theoretical positions from which to consider how forms of knowledge are articulated, opposed or mingled together, and their impact in different social settings. It is of special interest for academics in the field of anthropology and sociology of religion, but it can also be of particular relevance to anyone interested in analyses that explore the categories of ‘superstition’ and ‘belief’.” · Anthropological Forum

“Drawing on an eclectic range of ethnographic, empirical and theoretical sources, this book is a fascinating and timely contribution to contemporary scholarly debates about that most troubled of interfaces, between religion and science.” · Alexander Smith, The University of Warwick

“The conceptualization of the volume in terms of science, religion and forms of life (although public life might also work) is original and compelling as a means of exploring the complex terrains and scales at which religion and science meet, are received and transform one another.” · Paul-François Tremlett, The Open University

Description

The relationships between science and religion are about to enter a new phase in our contemporary world, as scientific knowledge has become increasingly relevant in ordinary life, beyond the institutional public spaces where it traditionally developed. The purpose of this volume is to analyze the relationships, possible articulations and contradictions between religion and science as forms of life: ways of engaging human experience that originate in particular social and cultural formations. Contributions use this theoretical and ethnographic research to explore different scientific and religious cultures in the contemporary world.

Carles Salazar is Professor of Social and Cultural Anthropology at the University of Lleida. He received his PhD from the University of Cambridge and has carried out ethnographic fieldwork on cooperation, religion and kinship. His publications include Anthropology and Sexual Morality. A Theoretical Investigation (Berghahn, 2006) and European Kinship in the Age of Biotechnology, co-edited with Jeanette Edwards (Berghahn, 2009).

Joan Bestard is Professor of Social Anthropology at the University of Barcelona, where he is also director of the research center on Kinship and Family. He has done research on kinship and religion and is currently conducting research on religion in Southeast Poland. His recent publication is Familias (Madrid, 2012).

Subject: General Anthropology Religion General Cultural Studies



Contents

Introduction: Science, Religion and Forms of Life
Carles Salazar

PART I: COGNITION

Chapter 1. Maturationally Natural Cognition Impedes Professional Science and Facilitates Popular Religion
Robert N. McCauley

Chapter 2. Scientific vs. Religious ‘Knowledge’ in Evolutionary Perspective
Michael Blume

Chapter 3. Magic and Ritual in an Age of Science
Jesper Sørensen

PART II: BEYOND SCIENCE

Chapter 4. Moral Employments of Scientific Thought
Timothy Jenkins

Chapter 5. The Social Life of Concepts: Public and Private 'Knowledge' of Scientific Creationism
Simon Coleman

Chapter 6. The Embryo, Sacred and Profane
Marit Melhuus

Chapter 7. The Religions of Science and the Sciences of Religion in Brazil.
Roger Sansi-Roca

Chapter 8. Science in Action, Religion in Thought: Catholic Charismatics’ Notions about Illness
Maria Coma

PART III: MEANING SYSTEMS

Chapter 9. On the Resilience of Superstition
João de Pina-Cabral

Chapter 10. Religion, Magic and Practical Reason: Meaning and Everyday Life in Contemporary Ireland
Tom Inglis

Chapter 11. Can the Dead Suffer Traumas? Religion and Science after the Vietnam War
Heonik Kwon

Notes on Contributors

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