Russell T. McCutcheon

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Russell T. McCutcheon
Born
Russell Tracey McCutcheon

1961 (age 58–59)
NationalityCanadian
Academic background
Alma mater
ThesisManufacturing Religion[1] (1995)
Doctoral advisorNeil McMullin
Other academic advisors
Academic work
DisciplineReligious studies
Institutions

Russell Tracey McCutcheon (born 1961) is a Canadian religion scholar with a PhD in religious studies from the University of Toronto in 1995. He is a professor and was department chair from 2001 to 2009 at the University of Alabama. He was one of the editors of the quarterly periodical Method & Theory in the Study of Religion, 1997–2001. In 2005, McCutcheon was elected President of the Council of Societies for the Study of Religion, headquartered at Rice University. He is the founder and series editor for the anthology series, Critical Categories in the Study of Religion.[2]

He has been noted for a controversy concerning methodology in the field of religious studies. This controversy centred on a rather polemical exchange between McCutcheon and Robert A. Orsi, who held a teaching position at Harvard University and Harvard Divinity School, with Orsi referring to McCutcheon's book, The Discipline of Religion, as "chilling". Orsi also made the comment, "the assumption appears to be that the scholar of religion by virtue of his or her normative epistemology, theoretical acuity, and political knowingness, has the authority and the right to make the lives of others the objects of his or her scrutiny. He or she theorizes them." McCutcheon responded with a paper included in the Journal of the American Academy of Religion entitled, "It's a Lie. There's No Truth in It! It's a Sin! On the Limits of the Humanistic Study of Religion and the Costs of Saving Others from Themselves".[3]

Books[edit]

  • Manufacturing Religion: The Discourse on Sui Generis Religion and the Politics of Nostalgia. Oxford University Press. 1997. ISBN 9780190282981.
  • with Willi Braun, Guide to the Study of Religion, London; New York: Continuum, 2000.
  • The Discipline of Religion: Structure, Meaning, Rhetoric, London; New York: Routledge, 2003.
  • Studying Religion: An Introduction, London; Oakville, CT: Equinox, 2007
  • with William E. Arnal, The Sacred is the Profane: The Political Nature of "Religion" . New York: Oxford University Press, 2013.
  • A Modest Proposal on Method: Essaying the Study of Religion, Leiden; Boston: Brill, 2015.

References[edit]

  1. ^ McCutcheon, Russell T. (1995). Manufacturing Religion: The Discourse of Sui Generis Religion and the Politics of Nostalgia (PhD thesis). Toronto: University of Toronto.
  2. ^ Critical Categories in the Study of Religion accessed June 10, 2017.
  3. ^ McCutcheon, Russell T. (2006-09-14). ""It's a Lie. There's No Truth in It! It's a Sin!": On the Limits of the Humanistic Study of Religion and the Costs of Saving Others from Themselves". Journal of the American Academy of Religion. 74 (3): 720–751. ISSN 1477-4585.