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Towards a symmetrical approach : the study of religions after postmodern and postcolonial criticism

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FUJDA, Milan and David ZBÍRAL. Towards a symmetrical approach : the study of religions after postmodern and postcolonial criticism. 2012.
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Original name Towards a symmetrical approach : the study of religions after postmodern and postcolonial criticism
Authors FUJDA, Milan and David ZBÍRAL.
Edition 2012.
Other information
Original language English
Type of outcome organization of a workshop
Field of Study 6.3 Philosophy, Ethics and Religion
Country of publisher Czech Republic
Confidentiality degree is not subject to a state or trade secret
WWW Homepage of the workshop
Organization Filozofická fakulta - Repository
Keywords in English religion; postcolonial criticism; actor-network-theory; principle of symmetry; postmodern criticism of science; academic study of religion
Changed by Changed by: RNDr. Daniel Jakubík, učo 139797. Changed: 14. 4. 2013 00:50.
Abstract
"The symmetry postulate", as David Bloor formulated it, "enjoins us to seek the same kind of causes for both true and false, rational and irrational beliefs." Such a principle seems to conform to the common sense. At the same time it is often neglected in the field of social sciences. In the light of consequences of this principle, the academic study of religions seems to be predominantly an exercise in asymmetry: neglecting the voices of women and favouring men's worlds; preferring the voices of experts over those of lay participants, of elites over ordinary people; siding with the winners against the losers. The postmodern and postcolonial criticism of the Western scholarly tradition have brought number of such asymmetries to our sight. Yet, the symmetrical ways are still an unexplored territory. This workshop on the symmetrical approach would like to offer a chance to explore this unexplored territory together. We therefore invite students of religions, qualitative sociologists, anthropologists, and historians to exchange ideas and scholarly experience and examples of good practice at a workshop on the symmetrical approach in the study of religions held in Brno, Czech Republic.
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