2015 Day Lecture, The University of Alabama

I’m gearing up for a trip to Alabama (my first time in the state) to deliver the 3rd annual Zachary Daniel Day Lecture at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa. My talk, “The Buddhist Virtues of Raging Lust and Crass Materialism in Contemporary Japan,” is based on a forthcoming article with the same title (Material Religion, due out late 2015/early 2016). A short video abstract of the talk is below.


Joining the Conversation on the Politics of Religious Freedom at PluRel

This week I had the good fortune to be invited to respond to an exchange between Elizabeth Shakman Hurd (Northwestern University) and Ed Brown (Stefanus Alliance International) hosted at the Norwegian PluRel blog. Hurd and Brown offered two very different takes on a meeting held in Oslo last month at which signatories representing several different nations signed a charter upholding their commitment to protecting religious freedom.

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Reviews of Drawing on Tradition—A Preliminary Response to Some Critiques

EDIT (28 January 2014): This edit is belated, but I want to thank Horie Norichika for reading and immediately responding to this post via Twitter. To summarize our brief exchange there, Horie-sensei clarified that he was less concerned with my deployment of the category of religion than in the source material I used to bolster my claims. I agree with this part of his critique.

***Original Post Follows***

It’s been just over a year since Drawing on Tradition hit the shelves, and happily several reviews have already been published in ChoiceAnthropology Review DatabaseMonumenta NipponicaAmerican EthnologistPacific Affairs (I’ve not yet read that one) and Religious Studies in Japan. I am honored and flattered that the book has received such a critical response in such a short time frame. The best academic compliment one can be paid is to have one’s work seriously critiqued.

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Website crash and rise

Just a quick note that this site was down for several hours due to user error on 15 April. I had to reconstruct the site from scratch, so several of the pages that had existed before will be slowly coming back on-line in the coming week.