On Teaching Religion: Essays by Jonathan Z. Smith

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9780199944293: On Teaching Religion: Essays by Jonathan Z. Smith

For more than thirty years, Jonathan Z. Smith has been among the most important voices of critical reflection within the academic study of religion. Smith has also produced a significant corpus of essays and lectures on teaching and on the essential role of academic scholarship on religion in matters of education and public policy. Education is not a side issue for Smith, and his essays continually shed light on fundamental questions. What differentiates college from high school? What are the proper functions of an introductory course? What functions should a department serve in undergraduate and graduate education? How should a major or concentration be conceived-if at all? What roles should the academic guilds play in public discourse on education and on religion? Most importantly, what does it mean to say that one is both a scholar and a teacher, and what responsibilities does this entail?

Smith's writings on these crucial issues for education have been largely inaccessible until now. Some pieces in this book appeared in education journals, while others were collected in specialist volumes of conference proceedings. Many were originally delivered as keynote speeches to the American Academy of Religion and other major scholarly organizations, and although scholars reminisce about hearing Smith deliver them, the works themselves are not readily available. On Teaching Religion collects the best of these essays and lectures into one volume, along with a new essay by Smith.

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About the Author:


Christopher I. Lehrich is Assistant Professor of Religion, Boston University.

Review:


"Smith's writing in these essays is consistently clear and often provocatively epigrammatic...Any reader of this journal is likely to find something of value in this book."--Teaching Theology and Religion


"Academic colleagues know J. Z. Smith as a scholar of wide-ranging erudition, but not many, I suspect, also realize that he is a superb instructor (at both the undergraduate and graduate levels) and a seasoned administrator. Equal to his dedication to profound scholarship, part of his life-long passion has also been expended on all the nitty-gritty issues of teaching religion, set within a specifically American liberal arts collegiate context. Genially and wittily written, these essays that formed the bases of over 150 live presentations over the years on materials and methods, aims and curriculum, of the discipline are as fresh and relevant today as they were first encountered. No serious educator in the discipline can afford to neglect the content of the volume that is also the editor's labor of love."--Anthony C. Yu, Carl Darling Buck Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus in Humanities, The University of Chicago


"There are a growing number of people who connect to J.Z. Smith and recognize him as the giant he is, not just in the field of religious studies but in the role of the humanities as a window into the broadest canvas of human inquiry, creativity and self-doubt. Smith is a devout skeptic, with the verbal brush stroke of a Picasso. It is sheer pleasure to hear him think out loud, and to reason about common issues with his distinctive, always engaging panache."--Bruce Lawrence, Nancy & Jeffrey Marcus Humanities Professor Emeritus and Professor of Islamic Studies, Duke University


"For those who think religion is obvious and ultimately important, Jonathan Z. Smith's pedagogical advice-'there is nothing that must be taught, there is nothing that cannot be left out'-is utterly subversive, for it finds opportunities in matters that previously seemed settled. His message is that not everything gets to count as significant; focus requires us to disregard much; things can be otherwise. Throughout these essays, Smith invites readers-subtly, provocatively, and always artfully-to identify other people's choices, to defend their own, and to live with the implications. This is critical thinking at its best and most potent."--Russell T. McCutcheon, Professor of Religious Studies, University of Alabama


"Required reading for any scholar of religion concerned with the state and fate of the profession, the book should be read either prior to or at the outset of graduate studies in religion. The book is vital to any committee in the humanities or social sciences concerned with the aims of education and the mission of the university." --Religious Studies Review


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Christopher I. Lehrich
Verlag: OXFORD UNIV PR Dez 2012 (2012)
ISBN 10: 0199944296 ISBN 13: 9780199944293
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Buchbeschreibung OXFORD UNIV PR Dez 2012, 2012. Buch. Buchzustand: Neu. Neuware - On Teaching Religion collects the best of Jonathan Z. Smith's essays and lectures into one volume. 176 pp. Englisch. Artikel-Nr. 9780199944293

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