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After We Deconstruct ‘Religion,’ Then What? A Case for Critical Realism

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image of Method & Theory in the Study of Religion

Abstract Some scholars of religion have turned their attention from religion to “religion” and have then deconstructed the conceptual category, arguing that the concept of religion is an invention of the scholar that corresponds to nothing. In Schilbrack (2012), I used the work of Tim Fitzgerald to identify what such arguments get right and what they get wrong. In the present reply to Fitzgerald, I make a case for critical realism as a methodological stance for the study of religion that can learn from deconstructive approaches without abandoning the concept.

Affiliations: 1: Department of Philosophy and Religion, Western Carolina University 226-A Stillwell, Cullowhee, NC 28723 USA


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